Testing    Grammar Jonathan Magdalena
What  are we trying to  MEASURE ? <ul><li>“ English  grammar  is chiefly a system of  </li></ul><ul><li>syntax , that deci...
Why  should we test  grammar ? <ul><li>Linguistic   or communicative competence? </li></ul><ul><li>Structures  or function...
How   should we test  grammar ? <ul><li>Separated  from skills? </li></ul><ul><li>Discrete  point  or integrative items? <...
What are the most common  test formats  for testing grammar? <ul><li>RECOGNITION </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple choice items (...
What are the most common  test formats  for testing grammar? <ul><li>Production </li></ul><ul><li>Completion items (Hughes...
When  should we go for  grammar   recognition ? <ul><li>When… </li></ul><ul><li>More material needs to be covered.  </li><...
When  should we go for  grammar   production ? <ul><li>When… </li></ul><ul><li>You want to evaluate a person’s ability to ...
True/False <ul><li>Is this sentences true or false? </li></ul><ul><li>“ He works from Monday to Friday” </li></ul><ul><li>...
Multiple Choice <ul><li>John usually ______from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>a. works  b. worked  c. has worked  d. ...
Gap-Filling <ul><li>John usually ______(work) from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>They must be part of a broader conte...
Cloze/C-test <ul><li>John ______ works ______Monday ______Friday </li></ul><ul><li>Tests student’s understanding of the wh...
Sentence Building <ul><li>Friday/usually/to/John/Monday/work </li></ul><ul><li>Tests recognition and/or production   </li>...
Sentence Transformation <ul><li>John is a doctor. He ______________ (work) </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be p...
Correction/Editing <ul><li>John usually working from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>Tests recognition of mistakes </li...
Five characteristics to measure  communicative   grammar <ul><li>The test must provide more context than only a single sen...
Therefore… <ul><li>Have the test taker say or write something of discourse length in order to perform some communicative t...
Split Sentences <ul><li>Write out some sentences, and then cut each sentence in half. Place the two halves in two separate...
Examples <ul><li>If you eat that   </li></ul><ul><li>If you touch the dog   </li></ul><ul><li>If you steal my boyfriend   ...
Sentences from pictures <ul><li>Hand out a sheet of pictures.  Ask students to come out sentences from the pictures or ask...
 
Memory Test <ul><li>Give limited time for students to see the picture.  Ask them to describe the picture without seeing it...
 
Picture Dictation <ul><li>A student try to describe the picture to other students who haven ’ t seen it. </li></ul><ul><li...
 
Strip Story <ul><li>Give students a text from a strip story.  Ask them to find the order and resolve the problem from the ...
 
Miming an action <ul><li>Ask students to role play in a limited situation. </li></ul><ul><li>Through acting, it can test s...
Growing Stories <ul><li>Story-building activities </li></ul><ul><li>Students ’  ability of making sentences with different...
 
Questionnaires <ul><li>Turn what have taught in class into a questionnaire.  Get students to survey each other.  (does not...
 
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Testing Grammar

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Testing Grammar

  1. 1. Testing Grammar Jonathan Magdalena
  2. 2. What are we trying to MEASURE ? <ul><li>“ English grammar is chiefly a system of </li></ul><ul><li>syntax , that decides </li></ul><ul><li> the order and </li></ul><ul><li>patterns in which </li></ul><ul><li>words are arranged </li></ul><ul><li> into sentences. ” ( Close, 1982) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why should we test grammar ? <ul><li>Linguistic or communicative competence? </li></ul><ul><li>Structures or functions? </li></ul><ul><li>Usage or use? </li></ul><ul><li>Prescriptive or descriptive? </li></ul>
  4. 4. How should we test grammar ? <ul><li>Separated from skills? </li></ul><ul><li>Discrete point or integrative items? </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on grammar or meaning? </li></ul>
  5. 5. What are the most common test formats for testing grammar? <ul><li>RECOGNITION </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple choice items (Liu, 121) </li></ul><ul><li>Error-recognition items (Liu, 129) </li></ul><ul><li>True/False (Baxter, 35) </li></ul><ul><li>Pairing and matching items </li></ul><ul><li>Cloze/Modified Cloze (Hughes, 144) </li></ul>
  6. 6. What are the most common test formats for testing grammar? <ul><li>Production </li></ul><ul><li>Completion items (Hughes, 143) </li></ul><ul><li>Transformation items (Liu, 131) </li></ul><ul><li>Paraphrase (Hughes, 143) </li></ul><ul><li>Rearrangement </li></ul><ul><li>Editing </li></ul><ul><li>Combination and addition items </li></ul><ul><li>Items involving the changing of words </li></ul>
  7. 7. When should we go for grammar recognition ? <ul><li>When… </li></ul><ul><li>More material needs to be covered. </li></ul><ul><li>You want to test different levels of learning. </li></ul><ul><li>You have little time for scoring. </li></ul><ul><li>You are not interested in evaluating how well a test taker can formulate a correct answer. </li></ul><ul><li>You have a large number of test takers. </li></ul>
  8. 8. When should we go for grammar production ? <ul><li>When… </li></ul><ul><li>You want to evaluate a person’s ability to formulate a correct answer. </li></ul><ul><li>You have more time to score the items </li></ul><ul><li>You want to test a persons ability to apply concepts and information to a new situation. </li></ul><ul><li>You have a clear idea of the aspects and concepts that should be tested. </li></ul>
  9. 9. True/False <ul><li>Is this sentences true or false? </li></ul><ul><li>“ He works from Monday to Friday” </li></ul><ul><li>Does not demonstrate broader knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to construct in higher levels  </li></ul><ul><li>Encourages guessing due to 50/50 chance </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes toward learning </li></ul>
  10. 10. Multiple Choice <ul><li>John usually ______from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>a. works b. worked c. has worked d. is working </li></ul><ul><li>They can be tricky or too picky   </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes towards learning </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge is limited to options provided </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to construct at higher levels </li></ul><ul><li>Encourages guessing (25% chance) </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>All options must be grammatically possible </li></ul>
  11. 11. Gap-Filling <ul><li>John usually ______(work) from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>They must be part of a broader context   </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>First gap may be offered as a sample </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes towards learning </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge is limited to options provided </li></ul><ul><li>Limitations result in negative backwash </li></ul><ul><li>Focus should be on the aspect assessed. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Cloze/C-test <ul><li>John ______ works ______Monday ______Friday </li></ul><ul><li>Tests student’s understanding of the whole language   </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>First letter may be offered as a sample </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes towards learning </li></ul><ul><li>Some words may be impossible to guess </li></ul><ul><li>Can test student’s IQ rather than language proficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult for some students (bias) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Sentence Building <ul><li>Friday/usually/to/John/Monday/work </li></ul><ul><li>Tests recognition and/or production  </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>Capital letters and punctuation may interfere in the production of the answer </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes towards learning </li></ul><ul><li>Some context may be added </li></ul><ul><li>Can test student’s IQ rather than language proficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult for some students (bias) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Sentence Transformation <ul><li>John is a doctor. He ______________ (work) </li></ul><ul><li>More than one option may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>Clues will limit the answers </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to test attitudes towards learning </li></ul><ul><li>Some context may be added </li></ul><ul><li>Instructions are essential </li></ul><ul><li>Few aspects might be assessed (passive, reported, comparatives, conditionals…) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Correction/Editing <ul><li>John usually working from Monday to Friday </li></ul><ul><li>Tests recognition of mistakes </li></ul><ul><li>Can also test production through corrections </li></ul><ul><li>More than one correction may be possible </li></ul><ul><li>Mistakes must be grammatically possible </li></ul><ul><li>Good backwash </li></ul><ul><li>Context is essential </li></ul>
  16. 16. Five characteristics to measure communicative grammar <ul><li>The test must provide more context than only a single sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>The test taker should understand what the communicative purpose of the task is. </li></ul><ul><li>He or she should also know who the intended audience is. </li></ul><ul><li>He or she must have to focus on meaning and not form to answer correctly. </li></ul><ul><li>Recognize is not sufficient. The test taker must be able “ to produce grammatical responses. ” </li></ul>(R. Dickins)
  17. 17. Therefore… <ul><li>Have the test taker say or write something of discourse length in order to perform some communicative task for a known audience. </li></ul><ul><li>What is said or written must make sense. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Split Sentences <ul><li>Write out some sentences, and then cut each sentence in half. Place the two halves in two separate columns and ask students to find the matching half. </li></ul><ul><li>Students ’ abilities in combing sentences </li></ul><ul><li>Grammar knowledge to all forms of the sentences </li></ul>
  19. 19. Examples <ul><li>If you eat that </li></ul><ul><li>If you touch the dog </li></ul><ul><li>If you steal my boyfriend </li></ul><ul><li>If you go out now </li></ul><ul><li>If you don ’ t leave </li></ul><ul><li>If you don ’ t book a ticket </li></ul><ul><li>you ’ ll be sick </li></ul><ul><li>it ’ ll bite you </li></ul><ul><li>I ’ ll never speak to you again </li></ul><ul><li>you ’ ll get soaked </li></ul><ul><li>I ’ ll call the police </li></ul><ul><li>you ’ ll be lucky to get a seat </li></ul>
  20. 20. Sentences from pictures <ul><li>Hand out a sheet of pictures. Ask students to come out sentences from the pictures or ask them to tell a story. </li></ul><ul><li>Enough grammar knowledge to make sentences by students. </li></ul><ul><li>Accuracy </li></ul>
  21. 22. Memory Test <ul><li>Give limited time for students to see the picture. Ask them to describe the picture without seeing it. </li></ul><ul><li>Testing students ’ ability of making sentences.(enough grammar knowledge) </li></ul><ul><li>Accuracy </li></ul><ul><li>The transformation of students ’ sentences </li></ul>
  22. 24. Picture Dictation <ul><li>A student try to describe the picture to other students who haven ’ t seen it. </li></ul><ul><li>Testing if a student can make sentences which can help him/her communicate well. </li></ul><ul><li>Accuracy </li></ul>
  23. 26. Strip Story <ul><li>Give students a text from a strip story. Ask them to find the order and resolve the problem from the story. </li></ul><ul><li>See if students can find the time order from the tenses of the sentences. </li></ul><ul><li>Accuracy </li></ul>
  24. 28. Miming an action <ul><li>Ask students to role play in a limited situation. </li></ul><ul><li>Through acting, it can test students ’ ability of thinking of lines. (which may contains different tenses.) </li></ul><ul><li>Accuracy </li></ul>
  25. 29. Growing Stories <ul><li>Story-building activities </li></ul><ul><li>Students ’ ability of making sentences with different tenses </li></ul>
  26. 31. Questionnaires <ul><li>Turn what have taught in class into a questionnaire. Get students to survey each other. (does not contain fully-written-out questions.) </li></ul><ul><li>It can see if students ’ totally understand what have learned in class. Also it can see if students ’ can use it well. </li></ul>
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