Original Research

Quality assurance processes of language assessment artefacts and the development of language teachers’ assessment competence

Matthews M. Makgamatha
South African Journal of Childhood Education | Vol 12, No 1 | a1151 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v12i1.1151 | © 2022 Matthews M. Makgamatha | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 November 2021 | Published: 26 April 2022

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Matthews M. Makgamatha, Inclusive Economic Development, Human Sciences Research Council, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: This article revisits the quality assurance (QA) processes instituted during the development of the Teacher Assessment Resources for Monitoring and Improving Instruction (TARMII) e-assessment tool. This tool was developed in response to evidence of a dearth in assessment expertise among South African teachers. The tool comprises a test builder and a repository of high-quality curriculum-aligned language item pool and administration-ready tests available for teacher usage to enhance learning. All assessment artefacts in the repository were subjected to QA processes prior to being field-tested and uploaded into the repository.

Aim: The aim of this study was to extract from the assessment artefacts’ QA processes the lessons learned for possible development of language teachers’ assessment competence.

Setting: The reported work is based on the TARMII tool development project, which was jointly carried out by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) and the national education department in South Africa.

Methods: Through employing an analytical reflective narrative approach, the article systematically retraces the steps followed in enacting the QA processes on the tool’s assessment artefacts. These steps include the recruitment of suitably qualified and experienced assessment quality assurers, the training they had received and the actual review of the various assessment artefacts. The QA processes were enacted with the aim of producing high-quality assessment artefacts.

Results: The language tests and item pool QA processes enacted are explained, followed by an explication of the lessons learned for language teachers’ assessment writing and test development for the South African schooling context.

Conclusion: A summary of the article is provided in conclusion.


Keywords

e-assessment tool; assessment quality assurance; language teachers’ assessment competence; item pool; language tests; language test development

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