Ms. Sha Wu is now serving as Director of Foreign Language Assessment Department, National Education Examinations Authority (NEEA in short), Ministry of Education, China. NEEA is responsible for the test development and the test administration of many national examination programs in China, e.g. Gaokao. NEEA is now undertaking several reform tasks in Gaokao, esp. in the area of foreign language tests.
Ms. Wu has been deeply involved in the test development and administration of quite a few language tests programs and is now engaged in the development of China’s Standards of English (CSE) and a new English language test product.
The Development of China’s Standards of English and its potential application in English tests
In the current reform of examinations and enrolment system, launched in 2014 by China’s State Council, one important measure is to develop China’s Standards of English(CSE), a set of English proficiency scales, to promote the reform in China’s English tests. CSE aims to provide a tool to enhance the communication between English teaching, learning and assessment covering all stages of education in China. Used-based as it is defined, CSE attempts to take consideration of the needs from different potential users and stakeholders, not only focusing on the present demands but looking into the future needs. Large scale of data collection and lots of needs analysis have been done to ensure CSE will fit for purposes. This talk will first introduce the purpose and the current progress of CSE’s development, and its potential outlook. At the same time, a new English test system, temporarily named NETS, is now being designed by NEEA. Being a part of the exam reform, NETS will try to bring some changes in the content and form of English tests, and is expected to provide a coherent and comprehensible ladder for English learning. CSE and NETS, two projects from the same reform requirement, are unified in their aims. During the design process of NETS, CSE has started to display its role in test design, e.g. in outlining the test objectives, aiding with task description and score reports. This talk will attempt to provide some examples of how a language proficiency scale may help with test design.