An investigation of the language assessment literacy of teacher educators in Chile:knowledge, practices, learning, beliefs, and context

Villa Larenas, Salome (2020) An investigation of the language assessment literacy of teacher educators in Chile:knowledge, practices, learning, beliefs, and context. PhD thesis, UNSPECIFIED.

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To date, language assessment literacy (LAL) research has primarily focused on language teachers and a range of other stakeholders (e.g. Hasselgreen et al., 2004). However, little research attention has been given to the LAL of those who prepare pre-service teachers for their future profession, i.e. teacher educators. Also, the dominant methodology in LAL research has been the survey approach, eliciting perceived needs and self-reported knowledge (e.g. Vogt & Tsagari, 2014). In response, this mixed methods study explores the LAL of teacher educators working in English teacher education programmes, in this case in Chile. First, it aimed to gain understanding of their language assessment knowledge by means of a knowledge test, the Language Assessment Literacy Inventory (LALI), which was completed by 94 teacher educators. Additionally, interviews with 20 teacher educators provided insights into their language assessment beliefs and practices, and the extent of the LAL training they conduct with pre-service teachers. Despite teacher educators’ lack of language assessment training, key findings are that they have practice-derived language assessment knowledge. This has been mainly acquired on the job through communities of practice, which were found to be enriching environments for language assessment learning. Simultaneously, contextual constraints, and teacher educators’ conceptions of language assessment influence their practices and how they develop their pre-service teachers’ LAL. Importantly, the lack of language assessment training was reported to have a direct effect on teacher educators’ language assessment practices and their conceptions of assessment. Additionally, the findings identify teacher educators as key stakeholders in the enhancement of a LAL development cascade in the language teaching profession. The study has theoretical implications through the development of the LALI instrument and a LAL model for the Teaching Profession (LAL-TEP), which describes the interrelationships between language assessment beliefs, knowledge, practices, learning, and context. The study also has practical implications for LAL development in pre- and in-service education and for policy-making in Chile.

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Thesis (PhD)
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29 Jun 2020 08:30
Last Modified:
12 Sep 2023 00:42