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LinguaFolio STARTALK March 2008. Deborah W. Robinson, Ph.D. World Languages Consultant, Ohio Dept. of Ed. NCSSFL President. Critical Issues in Curriculum & Assessment. How do we determine what students should know and be able to do in these STARTALK programs?

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linguafolio startalk march 2008

LinguaFolio STARTALK March 2008

Deborah W. Robinson, Ph.D.

World Languages Consultant, Ohio Dept. of Ed.

NCSSFL President

critical issues in curriculum assessment
Critical Issues in Curriculum & Assessment
  • How do we determine what students should know and be able to do in these STARTALK programs?
  • How do we determine how well they can do it?
the what of curriculum national and state standards
The WHAT of Curriculum: National and State Standards

5Cs: Communication, Cultures,

Connections, Comparisons, Communities

  • Modes of Communication: Interpersonal, Interpretive, Presentational
  • Products, Practices, and Perspectives
Progress Indicators at grades 4, 8, 12,

and 16

“Students ask and answer simple questions about topics such as family, school, daily routine, and activities.”


how well
How Well?

Formative and Summative Assessments

  • Based globally on proficiency guidelines
  • Based locally on performance objectives
actfl proficiency guidelines
ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines

Speakers at the Novice-Mid level communicate minimally and with difficulty by using a number of isolated words and memorized phrases limited by the particular context in which the language has been learned. When responding to direct questions, they may utter only two or three words at a time or an occasional stock answer. They pause frequently as they search for simple vocabulary or attempt to recycle their own and their interlocutor’s words.

european common scale of reference a1
European Common Scale of Reference A1:

I can interact in a simple way provided the other person is prepared to repeat or rephrase things at a slower rate of speech and helps me formulate what I’m trying to say. I can ask and answer simple questions in areas of immediate need or on very familiar topics.

what is linguafolio
What IS LinguaFolio?
  • A language portfolio learners keep throughout their educational and professional careers.
  • A tool in which language learners, including heritage learners and English for speakers of other languages, record and reflect on their language learning and intercultural experiences.
  • A tool to help learners become reflective and autonomous language learners as they manage their own learning.
components of linguafolio
Components of LinguaFolio
  • Language Passport

An overview of experiences and abilities with different languages. It can be updated frequently and records formal qualifications and diplomas and self-assessments.

the passport includes
The Passport includes:
  • a summary of language learning and intercultural experiences or language courses outside of school; 
  • summer study, academies, or camps; 
  • contact with speakers of the language; 
  • a self-assessment grid and global scale; 
  • a linguistic profile.
2 language biography
2. Language Biography

A record of personal language learning history that helps to evaluate learning goals and reflect on language learning and cultural experiences.

the biography includes
The Biography includes:
  • learning goals—why you are learning language(s) and which language skills are most important to you;
  • language history—list of language learning experiences and dates; 
  • significant language learning and intercultural experiences; 
  • current linguistic priorities including Self-Assessment Checklist. The Self-Assessment Checklist must be completed before filling out your Passport.
why do we need can do s
Why do we need Can Do’s?

“Students ask and answer simple

questions about topics such as family,

school, daily routine, and activities.”


self assessment can do s
Self-Assessment Can Do’s

I can ask simple questions and give simple responses on familiar topics such as:

• What I like and dislike

• What I am doing

• Where I am going

• When I am going to do something

• Who someone is

  • What day it is

• What the weather is like

evidence for biography
Evidence for Biography

Choose any or all of the following: 

  • History of language learning and intercultural experiences
  • Travel, study, or work in other countries
  • Language use in programs or foreign countries
  • Pen pals or hosting exchange students
  • Reflections on exchanges and study visits
  • Reflections on important linguistic and intercultural experiences 
what is interculturality





Understanding another culture in relation to one’s own

Interaction with native speakers

Engagement with authentic artifacts

What is Interculturality?
cultures standard
Cultures Standard

Perspectivesmeanings, attitudes, values, ideas


celebrations, greetings, social interactions


art, literature, foods, laws, music, games








What interactions have you had with

people from another culture using

another language

  • in the last day?
  • in the last week?
  • in the last month?
evaluate your study skills
Evaluate Your Study Skills:
  • Learning inventory: What have you accomplished using a foreign language?
  • How do you learn? Learning style examples and ideas.
3 dossier
3. Dossier

A collection of pieces of work and certificates chosen by the individual to document and illustrate language skills, experiences, and achievements. It can be used to demonstrate the individual’s language abilities to others.

the dossier includes
The Dossier includes:
  • samples of written work and projects; 
  • certificates that indicate language skills; 
  • video and/or audio recordings; 
  • reports from tutors.
types of assessment












Types of Assessment







(contextualized listening, speaking, reading, writing)

AP test

formative summative assessment options
• Self-assessments of language competencies and intercultural experiences

Work samples


End-of-Course exam

Performance task


Formative & Summative Assessment Options
critical element goal setting
Critical Element: Goal Setting
  • Model goal setting
  • Make it clear that functional use of language, not grammar knowledge,

is the principle goal

  • Provide opportunities for learners to set their owngoals

Right, left, straight, opposite, across from, behind, roads, streets,

House, police station, store, post office, bus stop,

Where, what, how much, currency

From, to, in, out

Numbers up to ten

How to read a map

Word order varies, word borrowing, yes/no questions, Interrogative markers/words, gender agreement


Understand, follow, and give simple directions with visual support

Interact in culturally appropriate ways in service and purchasing situations

Present information about your ‘hood to others

student driven cycle
Student-Driven Cycle:

1. Review Self-Assessment of Competency Level Rubric.

2. Write goals based on unit content and perceived strengths.

3. Determine tasks for achieving goals.

4. Save goals and all completed work in a folder.

5. End of unit: Choose BEST work for each goal.

6. Write self-reflection based on BEST work and goals.

learner reflection includes
Learner Reflection Includes:
  • connecting what they already know to what they are learning.
  • checking frequently to see what they can and cannot do yet.
  • determining which activities help them learn most effectively.
  • setting small, achievable goals.
  • planning and monitoring future learning.
students should reflect on

I have learned…

I can…

I am good at…

I haven’t managed…

I don’t understand…

I have difficulty in…


I like best…

The most interesting thing is…

I don’t like…

The most boring thing is…

Students Should Reflect on:
reflecting on interculturality
Reflecting on Interculturality

Learners also need to be able to self-assess

their intercultural growth:

  • Are learners aware of the multiple aspects of culture?
  • Do they know where to find and how to engage in intercultural activities?
practices and activities that promote self assessment
Practices and Activities thatPromote Self-Assessment
  • Journaling or learner logs
  • Portfolios
  • Rubrics
  • Peer-assessment
  • Admit/exit slips
  • KWL charts (What I know, want to know, learned)
  • Think-Pair-Share
the benefits of linguafolio
The Benefits of LinguaFolio:
  • Increased motivation
  • Heightened self-confidence
  • Active learning
  • Promotes learner autonomy
  • Time thinking about learning
benefits continued
Benefits, continued
  • Increased teacher creativity
  • Stronger focus on communication
  • Improved relationships between teachers and students
  • More informed parents
  • Greater realization of language use in community
linguafolio informs
LinguaFolio informs:
  • language learners and their parents
  • educators
  • businesses and employers
  • facilitates K-16 articulation
  • serves as a tool for students to manage their language learning
  • recognizes and values heritage languages
  • promotes language learning as a life-long endeavor
linguafolio online
LinguaFolio Online
  • U. of Oregon Center for Applied Second Language Studies, Carl Falsgraf, director
  • “Can Do” statements, uploadable evidence
  • On-line by June 1, 2008!

For STARTALK: Novice-level Can Do's form the basis of the framework.

Programs choose Can Do’s from a menu of options.

The full set of Novice and Intermediate Can Do's can be used with heritage speakers and others with some language background to conduct before and after self-assessment. 

Good programs will not rely solely on Can Do self-assessment.
  • Programs should develop performance assessments and other measures.
  • Students can enter scores in LinguaFolio Online.
  • May have capability to upload performance assessments (text and audio) this summer as evidence of accomplishing Can Do's and broader cultural and content goals
can do s
Can Do’s
  • I can do this with help
  • I can do this
recap what is linguafolio
Recap: What is LinguaFolio?

A standards-based, self-directed

formative assessment tool that

records ongoing learner progress

and, along with external summative

assessment results, provides a

comprehensive view of student



European Language Portfolio

ACTFL Performance Guidelines for K-12 Learners

ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines

how to find the project
How to Find the Project

Helen’s slide:

Lessonslearned in Virginia

  • “Now we will do the LinguaFolio…”
  • Students must understand WHY
  • Students need guidance in HOW
  • Realistic expectations (level, goals)
  • Teacher training is key
  • Start small!