Toepas test of oral english proficiency for academic staff
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TOEPAS: Test of Oral English Proficiency for Academic Staff. Pete Westbrook Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use (CIP) University of Copenhagen (KU), Denmark IATEFL Conference, Glasgow 21 st March 2012 [email protected] Danish Universities.

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Toepas test of oral english proficiency for academic staff

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

TOEPAS: Test of Oral English Proficiency for Academic Staff

  • Pete Westbrook

  • Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use (CIP)

  • University of Copenhagen (KU), Denmark

  • IATEFL Conference, Glasgow

  • 21st March 2012

  • [email protected]


Toepas test of oral english proficiency for academic staff

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Danish Universities

>¼ of all study programmes in English


So we have

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

So we have:

Danish lecturer

“the chemical

formula for this

compound can thus

be found by

analysing...”

English Medium Instruction (EMI)

S T U D E N T S

NS Danish

NS Other

NS English

How do we know how the lecturers are coping?


Outline

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Outline

  • Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use (CIP)

  • Background to TOEPAS

  • Description of the test specifications

  • Formative aspects of the test

  • Summary


1 cip

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

1. CIP

  • Parallel language use at KU:

  • “The use of parallel languages refers to a situation in which two languages are considered equal in a particular domain, and where the choice of language depends on what is deemed most appropriate and efficient in a specific situation. At the University of Copenhagen, the use of Danish and English is determined by the principles of parallel language use.”


Toepas test of oral english proficiency for academic staff

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

  • CIP opened officially November 2008

  • 3 main areas:

    • language competence development

    • research

    • resource centre

  • Grown to around 16 staff


2 background to toepas

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

2. Background to TOEPAS

  • Test procedure for elite COME programmes

  • Purpose to assess COME teachers’ English language skills

    • High-stakes, specific test for university lecturers

  • Assessment should also provide information about any language training needed

    • Unique competence development tool


How toepas was developed

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

How TOEPAS was developed:


3 description of test specifications rating scales

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

3. Description of test specificationsRating scales:

  • Global scale: 5 levels

    • Levels 3, 4, 5 = certified

    • Levels 1, 2 = not certified

  • Analytic scales of 5 criteria:

    • fluency

    • pronunciation

    • vocabulary

    • grammar

    • interaction


Global rating scale

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Global rating scale:

  • 5: The lecturer has demonstrated English language proficiency for university teaching equivalent to that of a highly articulate, well-educated native speaker of English. The lecturer has been certified to teach English-medium courses. No training is required.

  • 4: The lecturer has demonstrated excellent English language proficiency for university teaching. The lecturer has been certified to teach English-medium courses. No training is required.

  • 3: The lecturer has demonstrated good English language proficiency for university teaching. The lecturer has been certified to teach English-medium courses. No training is required, but training may be beneficial in one or more of the assessed areas.

  • 2: The lecturer has demonstrated less than sufficient English language proficiency for university teaching. The lecturer has not been certified to teach English-medium courses. Training is required.

  • 1: The lecturer has demonstrated limited English language proficiency for university teaching. The lecturer has not been certified to teach English-medium courses. Significant training is required.


Layout of certification room

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Layout of certification room:

Examinee 3 – ‘graduate student’

Examiner B

And

as you can see on the...

screen

Table

Examinee 1 – ‘lecturer’

Video camera

Examinee 2 –

‘graduate student’

Examiner A


Test procedure

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Test procedure

  • Part 1: Warm up (not assessed)

  • 10 minutes as a group

  • Part 2: Mini-lecture (assessed)

  • 20 minutes each

  • Part 3: Question/answer session (assessed)

  • 5-7 minutes each

x3


Assessment procedure

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Assessment procedure

  • Examiners A & B:

    • take notes during test

    • assess and assign scores independently

    • discuss each examinee afterwards

  • 3rd examiner (C):

    • in cases of disagreement

    • all 2’s and 5’s

    • random selection for norming


Results so far march 2012

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Results so far (March 2012):

Certified

Not certified


What happens if people are not certified

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

What happens if people are not certified?

  • CIP: no influence – up to own department

  • CIP can offer training


4 formative aspects of the test

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

4. Formative aspects of the test

  • Detailed written feedback report

  • Option for oral feedback session

  • Access to the video recording

    • Clarification of result

    • Transparency

    • Training


Why formative aspects

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

Why formative aspects?

  • Stakeholders focus on need for language training as opposed to testing

  • ‘Exchange currency’

  • Strengthen:

    • validity

    • transparency

  • Matches CIP mission to be a competence development and research centre


5 summary

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

5. Summary:

  • TOEPAS:

    • Specific test for academic staff

    • Formative aspects

      • an awareness-raising tool

      • a needs assessment

      • validity and transparency

    • Future tasks:

      • Expand test for rest of KU

      • Test validation


Toepas test of oral english proficiency for academic staff

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

  • Thankyou

  • Any (more) questions?

  • Pete Westbrook: [email protected]


The toepas rating scale and the cefr

Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use

The TOEPAS rating scale and the CEFR

  • CEFR global scale parallels our 5 level global scale, but:

    • certification cut level is between B2 and C1

    • elements of B2 in our level 3

  • Target group more proficient CEFR

  • CEFR descriptors not nuanced enough


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