Test Items Part II
II-Constructed-Response Items These items require pupils to supply their own responses rather than select them. Such items can be put into two categories: 1- Restricted-Response Questions. 2- Extended-Response Questions.
Restricted-Response Questions“Short-Answer Questions” They require students to write a word, a phrase or a sentence. They take one of three forms: 1- Question Form: The pupil is required to pose a question. *Traditional houses are built of mud and straw. What …………………………? [ make a question about the underlined formation] 2- Association Form: The pupil is required to supply an association for a set of words or phrases. This association can be through a related idea or term. *Cuts, burns and scalds are ………………………………...
3- Completion Form: A statement with some missing words is presented to the pupil, who then is to supply the missing words. The blank should be better placed near or at the end of the form. *I like to study English abroad because.................................
Extended-Response Questions“Composition Questions” They require a paragraph or more. The organization of the sentences and paragraphs is the quality of the answer. Directions should be specific to the students. The teacher can use an introductory sentence with some guide words or information tables and maps for advanced learners. As for beginners, she can use questions with brief answers or picture cues to be more practical.
III- Testing The Language A)- Testing Vocabulary B)- Testing Grammar
A)- Testing Vocabulary This test enables students to demonstrate a knowledge of the meaning of a particular word as well as the awareness of other words with which it is used. It provides a good guide to reading ability. Vocabulary tests vary according to the teacher’s objectives. Here are some of the types of vocabulary tests:
1-Definition: The teacher gives a test word followed by several possible definitions or synonyms, or she places the definition followed by possible words . *A Nap is : a- brief sleep b- a happy song c- a sharp rock d- a short meeting 2- Completion: Students are asked to place some test words in a context written for them. *The old woman is too…….....to push open the heavy door. - sincere - feeble - deaf - harsh 3- Odd word out: A set of words with one odd item is presented to the students. They are asked to cross out the word that does not belong. -A mechanic - A newspaper - A porter - An engineer
4 - Paraphrase: This type suits advanced stages. Students are required to give their short paraphrase for some test words. *Suffocation means ……………………………….. • 5- Correcting Mistakes: • It is suitable for advanced stages. Possible corrections are accepted. • He felt exhausted after a long nap • ………………....................................... 6- Picture Cues (Labeling): This type suits beginners. Pupils are asked to match pictures to their names. • a clock - a plane -a doctor - a book • ___________ ______________ _____________
7-Word Matching : The words to be tested are placed in one column and in the other one their meanings are shown without order. Students are asked to match words to their meanings. The Words The Meanings 1- a queue ( ) a- custom done by a person 2- provide ( ) b- from a short time ago 3- latest ( ) c- to give or to supply d- healthy by exercising e- in the shape of a circle 8- Categorizing: The teacher gives the examples, the students give the category or vice versa. * Cars , Vans , Buses = ………………….
Some guidelines in testing vocabulary 1- All alternatives should be on the same level of difficulty. 2- Whenever possible , all choices should be related to the same area of activity. 3- All alternatives should be of the same length. 4- Items must be free of responses that look or sound like possible right answers.
Which center circle is bigger? They're both the same size
B- Testing Grammar Grammar tests are designed to measure students proficiency in matters raging from inflections to syntax. To test grammatical rules, several types of tests can be used , for example :- 1- Sentence completion: He is from Saudi Arabia. He is ……………… 2- Multiple choice completion : If I had a new coat , …………..it to everyone . a- I showed b- I’d show c- I’ve shown d- I’ll show
3- Choosing the correct answer: I (am – is – are ) a teacher . 4- Filling in spaces : ( am – is - are) These ----------- red bags. I ------------- Saudi. 5- Matching : 6- Doing as shown between brackets : Amal is at the door. ( ask a question ) Where …………………………….. ?
7-Correcting Mistakes : Ahmad leaves Riyadh last week . ( Give the correct form of the verb ) 8- The Inflection Form: Two techniques can be used :- 1- Giving part of the verb or adding more context . ( He is …………… ( write ) a book ) or ( He ………… ( write ) a book now). 2- Using a separate blank for each word in the verb phrase: She --------- ------------ ------------------- (sleep ) for nearly an hour.
Some guidelines in testing grammar 1- Incorrect grammar items should be avoided e.g. They (go – went – goed) to Abha last year. 2- Simple grammar items can be included at the beginning of the test to encourage students. 3- A useful, meaningful context should be used. 4- Homophonic distracters should be avoided.
IV –Common Testing Mistakes 1-Tests which are too easy or too difficult . They reduce the capacity of the test to discriminate among the students in their abilities. They produce an unreliable evaluation. 2- An insufficient number of items. Too short tests are inadequate means of measurement. 3- Redundancy of test types . Repeated items are inefficient .They carry too much extra baggage. 4- Lack of confidence measures. Tests which are designed for certain situations and pupils may not be suitable for others.
5-Negative wash back through non–occurant forms. By using incorrect structures of the language it is possible to teach errors to pupils. 6- Divergence cues. It is important not to provide cues to the correct option. Some students may answer the questions without knowledge of the content. 7- Content matching. Mere matching of a word or a phrase in a test item with the exact counterpart in a comprehension passage doesn’t necessarily entail comprehension.
8- Lack of cheating controls. When students obtain higher scores through cheating, tests are neither reliable nor valid. 9- Inadequate instructions. Instructions must be clear both to the students and to any administrators using the test. 10- Lack of piloting. It is important to try out the test on a restricted sample before it is put into general use.
(If people did not do silly things, nothing intelligent would ever get done.)Ludwig Wittgenstein V- Critisizing Test Samples