National Education Examinations Authority (NEEA) in China and British Council are proud to announce a joint conference on language assessment:

The 3rd International Conference on Language Testing and Assessment and the 5th British Council New Directions in English Language Assessment in Shanghai, 2017.

Theme of Joint Conference: Connecting Assessment with Teaching and Learning

The 3rd International Conference on Language Testing and Assessment and the 5th British Council New Directions in English Language Assessment focuses on the critical role that language assessment plays in education. We will look at how descriptions of proficiency, teaching ability and teachers’ assessment knowledge inform teaching and assessment. We will consider how language testing interacts with teaching and learning at the beginning and end of educational cycles and beyond as students are equipped for the working world. As the emphasis on communicative competence in East Asian education systems continues, new technology solutions to large scale testing demands will also be explored. The conference aims to provide a forum for the presentation of innovative approaches and practical solutions, with a focus on real-life case studies and works-in-progress reports.

Location of Conference :Hyatt on the Bund, Shanghai, No. 199, Huangpu Road, Hongkou District, Shanghai

Conference Dates: 2-3 December 2017

Conference Workshops: Date and venue to be announced on 1 December 2017

Target Audience

With a focus on language assessment within educational systems in East Asia, the conference seeks to attract education and testing practitioners, policy makers and implementers, and other stakeholders with an interest in the impact of assessment on education. It will also appeal to language testing academics wishing to gain insight into current research in the field as well as new directions in testing in practice in East Asia.

Conference Sub-themes:

Language proficiency frameworks

This year’s conference explores recent developments in the design and use of proficiency descriptor frameworks in East Asia.Papers exploring the localised use, adaption or development of fit-for-purpose proficiency frameworks are invited.

Foreign language testing for admissions and exit tests in education systems

High-level education system goals and aspirations for the language competence of students in East Asia invites further investigation into the complex interaction between testing and teaching at the admissions stage, and teaching and testing at the exit stage.Papers investigating the impact of entrance and exit tests on teaching and of teaching on entrance and exit tests are invited.

Measuring teachers’ language teaching proficiency

Language tests not only assess students’ language competence but, more indirectly, the success of the teaching standard and methodology.Papers presenting insight into the challenges of improving and measuring teachers’ English proficiency and how language proficiency impacts test preparation and student learning are invited.

Assessment literacy for language teachers

The positive or negative washback of assessment on teaching has generated much discussion and teachers’ understanding of how tests work and what they are measuring is a key factor in ensuring that teaching to the construct, or ability, occurs, rather than teaching to the test.Papers focusing on the impact of teachers’ language assessment literacy on their teaching or presenting the case for the need for teacher language assessment literacy are invited.

Foreign Language Testing for employability

A fundamental aim of education systems is to produce employable citizens. Stemming from the interaction between teaching and testing, how should assessment be contributing to sound decisions about candidate’s employability.Papers discussing language assessment beyond the education system or decisions about employability taken based on exit tests are invited.

Artificial Intelligence and Technology in language testing

With the focus on education for employability, the ability to actively communicate in a foreign language is key. Yet for teaching of speaking skills, in particular, to be effective, assessment tools need to reflect this component of language use. Large scale testing of speaking has been an elusive goal for most education systems due to human resource requirements, however. Technology has long been put forward as a potential panacea to this challenge.Papers examining current technological developments or describing research into machine rating of communicative language are invited.

Submission of Proposals

We invite proposals addressing the main and sub-themes of the conference and are particularly interested in those describing practical approaches, research case studies and innovative perspectives on challenges in language assessment in the East Asian context. Papers addressing the assessment of candidates with special needs are particularly welcome.

Criteria for Submission of Abstracts

Proposals should be

  • 250 words or less in length

  • reflective of at least one of the sub-themes of the conference

  • relevant to the target audience

  • of practical interest to members of the target audience

  • relevant to the East Asian region or including a regional perspective on an international paper

  • original and offering insight

  • submitted with an English translation where the presentation is in Mandarin Chinese

  • submitted to newdirections2017@britishcouncil.org

  • in Microsoft Word format to allow for ‘blind’ evaluation by the selection panel

Presentations should be

  • 20 minutes in length plus 10 minutes for Q&A

  • in English or Mandarin Chinese (please note as this is a regional and international conference, preference will be given to papers that are presented in English. This is to facilitate the open exchange of information between researchers in diverse contexts)

Please note that the working language of the conference is English.

Submission Guidelines

We ask prospective presenters to fill in a proposal form and return it to newdirections2017@britishcouncil.org.

Deadlines

Submission of proposal abstracts: 13 August 2017

Notification of acceptance: 10 September 2017