The assessment of self-access language learning : practical challenges
Reinders, Hayo; Lázaro, Noemí
View fulltext online
Citation:Reinders, H. & Lázaro, N. (2008) The assessment of self-access language learning : practical challenges. Language Learning Journal, 36(1), 55-64. NOTE: This is research undertaken for the University of Auckland and the Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Spain prior to the author being affiliated with the Unitec Institute of Technology.
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/2485
Self-access centres are a popular type of language support offered by an increasing number of schools and universities around the world. Assessment of the learning that takes place in such Centres is seen as both crucial and problematic. There appear to exist many barriers to successful assessment but these have not been comprehensively documented, making it difficult to develop systematic solutions. This article presents the results of a study of 46 self-access centres in five countries (Germany, Hong Kong, Spain, Switzerland, and New Zealand), investigating current assessment practice. In-depth strength-weakness analyses were conducted with the managers of each of the participating Centres. These revealed a complex interaction between pedagogical and practical challenges to assessment. They also showed an emphasis on the developmental role of assessment for learner autonomy and the importance of assessing both language gains and learning skills.