VietTESOL International Convention, VietTESOL International Convention 2018

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Best Practices in Rating Standardized Writing Tasks and Application for Non-Native English Speaking Teachers
Trang Thi Minh Le

Building: A12
Room: Room 305
Date: 2018-10-12 03:20 PM – 03:50 PM
Last modified: 2018-09-15


Standardized writing tests are often high stakes tests for students and the writing test scores often have consequences for the student, the writing teacher, and the instructional program which trains the student writers. How to evaluate writing is usually an important part of teaching writing. However, a close investigation of the current realities of scoring writing in an EFL teaching context reveals a number of difficulties that all teachers face in improving validity when scoring writing for standardized tests. This study explores the best practices that raters use when they score standardized test essays and provides feasible solutions to the scoring of two popular standardized tests, notably the IELTS and the TOEFL-iBT, by non-native English-speaking raters in the English language teaching context of Vietnam. A thorough review of the current literature regarding the scoring of standardized test essays provided this study with essential information on the best rating practices. In addition, a small set of anecdotal data from questionnaires and interviews with three experienced raters is used to supplement key ideas in the literature review. A framework of decision-making behaviors and rating instruments is proposed, which enables raters to align their decision-making behaviors with the rating requirements, thereby enhancing the validity and consistency of their scoring of EFL writing.


Rating Standardized Writing Tasks