Assessing Speaking in Context: Expanding the Construct and its Applications

Edited by: M. Rafael Salaberry, Alfred Rue Burch

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Multilingual Matters
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234mm x 156mm

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This edited volume investigates the nature and possible applications of an expanded and reconceptualized theoretical construct of speaking as a dynamic socially-constructed endeavour. It addresses both theoretical perspectives and methodological procedures to define and circumscribe the assessment of contextualized speaking. The chapters focus on the complexity brought about by actual interactional competence in speaking tasks and discuss how testing and assessment models and practices can incorporate recent research findings on the inherently dynamic and situated nature of language use. The volume presents research on language assessment in a variety of languages other than English, including French, Chinese and Japanese. It also examines the role that embodied action (gaze, gesture, orientation to materials and texts in the environment) plays in assessment practices, an area that has heretofore remained under-explored.

Chapter 6 will be free to download as an open access publication. We will link to it here as soon as it is available.

A refreshingly provocative collection challenging traditional large-scale approaches to oral language assessment. A convincing case is made for how assessment of interactive communication requires small-scale efforts. The volume concludes that the assessment of interactive communication in all its sociolinguistic grandeur requires new approaches to test construction and ratings, as well as revised thinking as to how results are to be utilized.

Andrew D. Cohen, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota, USA

M. Rafael Salaberry is Mary Gibbs Jones Professor of Humanities at Rice University, USA. His research interests include second language acquisition and use, multilingualism, bilingual education, assessment and teaching methodology. Together with S. Kunitz, he is the co-editor of Teaching and Testing Interactional Competence: Bridging Theory and Practice (2019, Routledge).

Alfred Rue Burch is an Associate Professor at Kobe University, Japan. His research interests include conversation analysis, discursive psychology, second language acquisition and use, and task-based language teaching and testing.  


Part 1: Conceptual and Theoretical Issues

1. M. Rafael Salaberry and Alfred Rue Burch: Assessing Speaking in Context: Expanding the Construct and the Applications

2. Carsten Roever and David Wei Dai: Reconceptualising Interactional Competence for Language Testing

3. India Plough: A Case for Nonverbal Behavior: Implications for Construct, Performance and Assessment

Part 2: Collecting and Rating Speaking Data

4. Alfred Rue Burch and Gabriele Kasper: Task Instruction in OPI Roleplays

5. Soo Jung Youn and Shi Chen: Investigating Raters' Scoring Processes and Strategies in Paired Speaking Assessment

6. Erica Sandlund and Pia Sundqvist: Rating and Reflecting: Displaying Rater Identities in Collegial L2 English Oral Assessment

Part 3: Designing Speaking Assessment Tests

7. Katharina Kley, Silvia Kunitz and Meng Yeh: Jiazhou? Is it California? Operationalizing Repair in Classroom-based Assessment

8. Remi Adam van Compernolle: Observing and Assessing Interactional Competence in Dynamic Strategic Interaction Scenarios

9. Shane Dunkle: Using Social Deduction Board Games to Assess and Strengthen Interactional Competence in ESL Learners

10. Dagmar Barth-Weingarten and Britta Freitag-Hild: Assessing Interactional Competence in Secondary Schools: Issues of Turn-taking

Part 4: Using New Technologies to Assess Speaking

11. Jayoung Song and Wei-Li Hsu: Design and Implementation of a Classroom-based Virtual Reality Assessment

12. Noriko Iwashita, Lyn May and Paul Moore: Operationalising Interactional Competence in Computer-mediated Speaking Tests

13. M. Rafael Salaberry and Alfred Rue Burch: Assessing Speaking in the Post-COVID-19 Era: A Look Towards the Future


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