TSL204 - Principles of Evaluation

Outline info
Last revision date 2018-07-26 08:54:41.901
Last review date 2018-07-26 08:54:41.903

Subject Title
Principles of Evaluation

Subject Description
Acquiring skills in the evaluation of students' work is critical to becoming a successful teacher. This subject teaches students the principles and tools of ESL assessment and gives students practical guidance on using and developing tasks in different language settings such as EAP and settlement-oriented ESL (PBLA).

Credit Status
This is a required credit in the TEFL/TESL Certificate Programs.

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

1. Explain the principles of language assessment.

2. Describe the functions of ESL assessment.

3. Demonstrate knowledge of the steps involved in classroom language test design.

4. Demonstrate knowledge of the strengths and weaknesses of different types of assessment.

5. Choose assessment instruments appropriate for different curriculums and ESL programs.

6. Evaluate and choose teaching resources appropriate for different curriculums and ESL programs.

7. Compare and contrast some standardized tests of English.

8. Choose and develop different assessment techniques pertinent to the level of the students and the relevant skill (e.g. listening, speaking, reading, writing etc.).

Cheating and Plagiarism
Each student should be aware of the College's policy regarding Cheating and Plagiarism. Seneca's Academic Policy will be strictly enforced.

To support academic honesty at Seneca College, all work submitted by students may be reviewed for authenticity and originality, utilizing software tools and third party services. Please visit the Academic Honesty site on http://library.senecacollege.ca for further information regarding cheating and plagiarism policies and procedures.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at student.conduct@senecacollege.ca.

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Disabilities Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.

TSL200 and TSL201.  TSL203 is recommended, but is not a formal prerequisite.

Topic Outline
1. Introduction

  • Testing, assessment and teaching
  • Approaches to language testing
  • Current issues in classroom testing
2.  Principles of Language Assessment
  • Practicality, reliability, validity, authenticity and washback
  • Applying principles to evaluation of classroom tests
3.   Designing classroom language tests
  • Test types
  • Practical steps to test construction
4.  Standardized testing
  • Developing a standardized test
  • TOEFL, IELTS etc.
5.  Assessing teaching resources
  • Books, audio/videocassettes, CDs etc.
6.   Assessing Listening
  • Types and skills of listening
  • Intensive listening
  • Responsive listening
  • Selective listening
  • Extensive listening
7.  Assessing Speaking
  • Types and skills of speaking
  • Imitative speaking
  • Intensive speaking
  • Responsive speaking
  • Test of Spoken English (TSE)
  • Interactive speaking
  • Extensive speaking
8.  Assessing Reading
  • Genres/types of reading
  • Skills and strategies for reading
  • Perceptive reading
  • Selective reading
  • Interactive reading
  • Extensive reading
9.  Assessing Writing
  • Genres/types of writing 
  • Skills of writing
  • Imitative writing
  • Intensive (controlled) writing
  • Responsive and extensive writing
  • Scoring methods for writing

10. Assessing in other types of clsses/contexts/purposes
  • Assessments in grammar, pronunciation classes etc.
  • Canadian Language Benchmarks
  • Portfolios

Mode of Instruction
The teacher may use some of the following teaching modes:

  • lectures 
  • questions and answer techniques 
  • classroom discussion 
  • pair/group work 
  • individual consultation 
  • student presentations

Prescribed Texts
Brown, H. Douglas and Abeywickrama, Priyanvada.  Language Assessment: Principles and Classroom Practices.  White Plains, N.Y. : Longman, 2nd Edition ISBN 978-013-814-931-4

Reference Material

Required Supplies

Promotion Policy

Grading Policy
A+ 90%  to  100%
A 80%  to  89%
B+ 75%  to  79%
B 70%  to  74%
C+ 65%  to  69%
C 60%  to  64%
D+ 55%  to  59%
D 50%  to  54%
F 0%    to  49% (Not a Pass)
EXC Excellent
SAT Satisfactory
UNSAT Unsatisfactory

For further information, see a copy of the Academic Policy, available online (http://www.senecacollege.ca/academic-policy) or at Seneca's Registrar's Offices.

Modes of Evaluation
Grading is based on the following marking scheme:

Mid Term 20%
Interview ESL teacher 10%
Comparing 2 standardized English tests 20%
Teaching Resources Assignment 10%
Evaluative Tools Assignment I 20%
Evaluative Tools Assignment II 20%
Assignments are due at the beginning of the class on the dates specified.  Begin your assignments early in anticipation of unforeseen problems that may arise in your work or personal life.  Should extenuating circumstances arise, please contact your instructor immediately, prior to when your assignment is due, so an appropriate course of action can be established.  Late assignments may be subject to a penalty of up to 10% per week and will not generally be accepted beyond two weeks after the assignment due date.

Students must attain a grade of at least 60% to pass the course. 


Approved by: Fiona Bain-greenwood