<b> Forum for the discussion of assessment and testing of ESL/EFL students </b>
3 posts • Page 1 of 1
With all the advances in educational theories, technology, etc. why are the ELLs still expected to take the same standardized exams as their peers with limited accommodations? I know that these tests play an important role in our educational system. Among other things they dictate funding and give a limited perspective of a students' progress. I feel like the entire process of testing the ELLs the same way as other students seems antiquated at best. Surely there is a better way to accommodate our ELLs for these tests than what is presently accepted protocol? I assure you the lack of attention to this matter is frustrating to both students and teachers.
I have a student who had to take the math portion of the NJASK test this year. She had only been in the country for several months. The entire testing time, she complained about the fact that she had to take a standardized test that assessed her knowledge and skills in a language that she couldn’t yet understand. To make matters worse, she felt insulted that the NJASK was available in Spanish but not in her own native language. She felt animosity towards the American school system for using the NJASK test results to determine which English class she will be placed in next year. This student was accustomed to being in the top ten percent in her class in her home country. It was definitely a culture shock for her to have her entire academic plan determined by a sole, culture-biased, standardized test.
How were you able to handle this situation afterward? I have not experienced standardized testing with ELL students yet but I feel for that student since it is clear that she has the ability but not the means to demonstrate them properly. As an ELL teacher what are ways of helping student such as yours to be more prepared for the test, make sure that they are taking the appropriate tests or alternative tests and also how to you handle the frustrations that ELLs have regarding the tests?