School of Education Graduate Research Assistant awarded international grant

Posted by er134 at Apr 30, 2014 02:55 PM |
Nathaniel Owen receives funding for a cognitive study on comparable testing systems

Nathaniel Owen (pictured), a Graduate Research Assistant from our School of Education has been awarded a research grant of $2000 from the Educational Testing Service (ETS). This is the third received by a student from the department, following Yong-il Yi in 2011 and Kevin Browne in 2012.

ETS produce the world's largest volume language test, the ‘Test of English as a Foreign Language’, which they have done since the early 1960s. It is now accepted as evidence of English proficiency by more than 8,000 institutions in over 130 countries.

Nathaniel’s work compares the cognitive processing of the internet version of this test, to the reading section of the International Language Testing System, and questions whether there are significant differences between the processes elicited by each test. This focus on the cognitive process can reveal test developers’ understanding of how second language students read in English.

Since universities in the UK accept test scores from multiple test providers, exploring comparability between tests is of paramount importance.

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