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Academic literacy, Diversity, Language assessment in multilingual contexts, Language testing, Transformation

Enough challenges for a lifetime

Several NExLA members, along with a number of other contributors, have just published a noteworthy contribution to applied linguistics in general, and language assessment in particular. In Assessing academic literacy in a multilingual society: Transition and transformation, which has just appeared from Multilingual Matters, they attempt to answer the question of how, as designers of language interventions, they respond to the challenges of education in an environment that is in transition, and in many respects unprepared for change.

Continue reading “Enough challenges for a lifetime”
Conferences, Language testing

Invitation: British Council’s New Directions in Language Assessment Conference (online)

8th East Asia New Directions in English Language Assessment Conference

One of the few language assessment conferences taking place this year is the British Council’s New Directions in Language Assessment, on 29-31 October. The theme is highly topical, and the selection of keynote speakers excellent. It is being presented online. You can register here:

Your registration also entitles you to a voucher, so that you will be able to access the recorded sessions afterwards, should the time difference make direct online participation awkward.

Enquiries can be directed to Sheryl Cooke of the British Council, and New Directions East Asia Conference Chair. Mention that you are a NExLA member when you enquire!

Conferences, Language assessment in multilingual contexts

POSTPONED UNTIL 2021 DUE TO COVID-19: 42nd Language Testing Research Colloquium

LTRC 2020 has been postponed
We have retained the blog below posted in December 2019, since we hope that the Conference will still take place in Tunisia next year although official decisions have yet to be made.
Kindly keep up to date about new developments by regularly visiting

Conference participation was high, over 140 registrants, at this stage of the early days of early registration period. The conference had also exceeded its targets in terms of sponsorship.

Micheline Chalhoub-Deville, ILTA President

Posted in December 2019: “The LTRC 2020 Organizing Committee warmly invites you to Tunisia to participate in the 42nd Language Testing Research Colloquium (LTRC), the annual conference of the International Language Testing Association (ILTA), to be held June 9-13, 2020 in Hammamet, Tunisia.”

LTRC will take place in Africa and the Arab World

LTRC is the major international conference for research on language testing and assessment and has been held in diverse locations around the world. This is the first time that LTRC will take place in Africa and the Arab World, and so we welcome both people from the region and those from further afield for whom this may represent a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit Tunisia.

Though small, Tunisia is well known for its exceptional archaeological sites; Colonial and Islamic architecture; museums and mosaic collections; Berber villages; bustling medinas and souks; lush oases, stunning beaches, and its cuisine. Many of Tunisia’s best attractions are within easy reach of Hammamet where LTRC 2020 will take place.

As appropriate for a conference in a multilingual context, our conference theme is:

Assessment in Multilingual Contexts: Models, Practices, Policies & Challenges.

Apart from the conventional symposia, research papers, and posters, there will be three keynote plenaries, three invited symposia, a work in progress session, and a set of pre-conference workshops and a roundtable led by prominent scholars in the field.

Pre-conference Roundtable

When: Tuesday, June 9, 2020, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Topic: Language Test Translation and Adaptation
Organizers: Albert Weideman & Tobie van Dyk

Space is limited!


Pre-conference Workshops: Six one-day workshops (space is limited!)

Tuesday, June 9, 2020, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

  • Workshop 1: What Teachers Need to Know About Assessing Speaking (Ardeshir Geranpayeh & Sian Morgan)
  • Workshop 2: Development and Use of Rubrics for Assessing Writing in Multilingual Contexts (Claudia Harsch)
  • Workshop 3: Using Interviews and Classroom Observations when Validating Assessments in a Multi-lingual Context (Hanan Khalifa)

Wednesday, June 10, 2020, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

  • Workshop 4: Latent Variable Modelling Using Mplus (Karen Dunn)
  • Workshop 5: Standard Setting in the Context of Language Assessment (Gad Lim, Tony Clark & Brigita Séguis)
  • Workshop 6: Assessing Reading and Listening skills through Corpus-based Techniques: Putting Theory into Practice in Multilingual Contexts (Jenny Liontou & Dina Tsagari)

More information …

Official website and registration:

Questions?  Please contact

We look forward to welcoming you to Tunisia!

Academic literacy, Language testing

Pre-university test of academic literacy vs. English language matric results: which is the better predictor of academic success?

Standardised tests of academic literacy are a good indicator of first-year academic performance, according to Dr. Kabelo Sebolai, Deputy Director of the Language Centre at Stellenbosch University. At least for Stellenbosch University, results show that the performance standards set for the standardised test of academic literacy associate positively with first-year academic performance, while the scores on the levels of performance set for the school-leaving English examination do not. Continue reading “Pre-university test of academic literacy vs. English language matric results: which is the better predictor of academic success?”