Distance education and international assessing system
Distance education and international assessing system
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«Distance education and international assessing system»
LESSON 1. DISTANCE EDUCATION AND INTERNATIONAL ASSESSING SYSTEMPlan:
1. Advantages and disadvantages of distance education 2. General information about assessment system 3. International testing systems on English proficiency
Distance education is different from the traditional education. Distance education is that educational information and instruction is taught to learners who are physically distant from the source of that information and instruction. Distance education, also called distance learning, provides learning chances to people who could not afford time or money for traditional classes or who lived in remote areas far from schools. Because of the expansion of the Internet in recent years, the Internet has become the most important tool for delivering distance education.
W hat exactly is distance learning?
Distance learning occurs when there is a separation between the teacher and the student, usually due to geographical or time concerns that prevent the student from attending an on-campus course. Often, electronic means are used to bridge this gap and distribute educational material . The majority of distance education today takes place using the Internet . These electronic means are used to distribute the learning material, keep students in touch with teachers, and provide access to communication between students.
Of course, distance learning can use other technological formats as well including television, DVDs, teleconferencing, and printable material, but the immediacy and functionality of Web learning has made it a first choice for many distance learners. Online programs often take advantage of a number of emerging technologies to make keeping in touch and effectively communicating ideas easier and more efficient than ever before and students may find themselves using interactive videos, e-mail, and discussion boards to complete their lessons. Distance learning makes it much easier for some students to complete a degree or get additional job-training while balancing work and family commitments.
There are some advantages of distance education.
One of the primary advantages of distance education is the flexibility it provides to students. Distance education provides opportunities for people who may have trouble attending a traditional institution such as stay-at-home mothers, people working full time or members of the military. Many online educational programs allow you to work at your own place, so you can fit your education into your schedule. Flexibility in distance learning program gives chance to study without interfering in your personal life.
The most significant advantage of distance learning is that one can pursue his choice of education during any time of his life. There is no control about city, college, etc. One can live and study from anywhere while choosing for distance learning programs. What is necessary is the most convenience to a computer and a good speed Internet connection. You may find online schools that specialize in your particular field or one that can provide a great general education.
One more advantage is that more knowledge of computer and Internet skills that one gain in the process of distance learning experience can also be moved to other sides of life.
As distance learning can usually be completed on your own schedule, it is much easier to complete distance learning courses while working than more traditional educational programs. Keeping your job gives you more income, experience and stability while completing your degree giving you less to worry about and more time to focus on your studies. Seeing the above mentioned advantages of distance learning, it becomes a little uncertain if this method of learning has any disadvantage or not.
But to be frank, there are some problems too.
One of the main disadvantages of distance education is the loss of interaction with other students in the classroom. In distance learning, study in a group is difficult, one just have to do by himself which becomes publicly one-off as there is no communication with other classmates. In distance learning, student and instructor also need to make proper plan much in advance to get the good and best result.
General information about assessment system
Assessment is the process of gathering and evaluating information on what students know, understand, and can do in order to make an informed decision about next steps in the educational process. Governments, international organizations, and other stakeholders are increasingly recognizing the importance of assessment for monitoring and improving student learning, and the concomitant need to develop strong systems for student assessment.
International testing systems on English proficiency
IELTS – the international English language testing system, is designed to assess the language ability of candidates who need to study or work where English is the language of communication. IELTS conforms to the highest international standards of language assessment. It covers the four language skills: listening, reading, writing and speaking.
IELTS is recognized by Universities and employers in many countries, including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and USA. It is also recognized by professional bodies, immigration authorities, and other government agencies. IELTS tests are administered at centers throughout the world – there are more than 500 centers in over 125 countries including Uzbekistan. IELTS is available in two formats –Academic and General training.
The Academic module assesses whether a candidate is ready to study or train in the medium of English at an undergraduate or post-graduate level. Admission to undergraduate and post-graduate courses should be based on the results of this module.
The General training module emphasizes language skills in broad social and work place contexts. It is suitable for candidates who are going to migrate to an English speaking country, planning to work undertake work experience or training programs not at a degree level. The general training module is not designed to test the full range of format language skills required for academic purposes.
TOEFL - Undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate programs around the world require students to demonstrate their ability to communicate in English as an entrance requirement.
The TOEFL test gives students the opportunity to prove they can communicate ideas effectively by simulating university classroom and student life communication. The language used in the test reflects real-life English-language usage in university lectures, classes, and laboratories. It is the same language professors use when they discuss coursework or concepts with students. It is the language students use in study groups and everyday university situations, such as buying books at the bookstore. The reading passages are from real textbooks and course materials.
The TOEFL test measures how well students use English, not just their knowledge of the language. Because it is a valid and reliable test with unbiased, objective scoring, the TOEFL test confirms that a student has the English language skills necessary to succeed in an academic setting. That‘s why it is the most highly regarded and widely accepted test in the world. More than 6,000 colleges, universities, and agencies in 130 countries accept TOEFL scores, so students have the flexibility to use their TOEFL test scores worldwide. More than 22 million people have taken the test since 1964.
Cambridge ESOL - University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL) is a part of the Cambridge Assessment Group, which is a department of the University of Cambridge*. It has a tradition of language assessment dating back to 1913, and is one of the world‘s largest educational assessment agencies. Cambridge ESOL offers an extensive range of examinations, certificates and diplomas for learners and teachers of English. In 2006, over 2 million people took these examinations at centres in over 130 countries.
Cambridge ESOL undertakes:
• to assess language skills at a range of levels, each of them having a clearly defined relevance to the needs of language learners
• to assess skills which are directly relevant to the range of uses for which learners will need the language they have learned, and which cover the four language skills – reading, writing, listening and speaking – as well as knowledge of language structure and use
• to provide accurate and consistent assessment of each language skill at the appropriate level
• to relate the examinations to the teaching curriculum in such a way that they encourage positive learning experiences, and to seek to achieve a positive impact wherever possible
• to endeavour to be fair to all candidates, whatever their national, ethnic and linguistic background, gender or disability.
CEFR – A common reference for describing language learning, teaching, and assessment. People have been learning, teaching, and assessing language for 28 centuries. In this long history, there have been as many different ways of teaching as there have been ways of describing levels of language learning and assessment. Even today, schools, universities, and language academies use many different methodologies and many ways to describe proficiency levels. What may be an intermediate level in one country may be an upper-intermediate level in another. Levels may vary even among institutions in the same area.
Levels according to CEFR:
LEVEL A1. BREAKTHROUGH
• Can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type.
• Can introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people he/she knows and things he/she has.
• Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.
LEVEL A2. WAYSTAGE. KEY ENGLISH TEST: Basic command of the spoken language
• Able to convey basic meaning in very familiar or highly predictable situations.
• Produces utterances which tend to be very short – words or phrases – with frequent hesitations and pauses.
• Dependent on rehearsed or formulaic phrases with limited generative capacity.
• Only able to produce limited extended discourse.
• Pronunciation is heavily influenced by L1 features and may at times be difficult to understand. • Requires prompting and assistance by an interlocutor to prevent communication from breaking down.
LEVEL B1. THRESHOLD. PRELIMINARY ENGLISH TEST:
Limited but effective command of the spoken language
• Able to handle communication in most familiar situations.
• Able to construct longer utterances but is not able to use complex language except in well-rehearsed utterances.
• Has problems searching for language resources to express ideas and concepts resulting in pauses and hesitation.
• Pronunciation is generally intelligible, but L1 features may put a strain on the listener.
• Has some ability to compensate for communication difficulties using repair strategies but may require prompting and assistance by an interlocutor.
LEVEL B2 . VANTAGE. FIRST CERTIFICATE IN ENGLISH:
Generally effective command of the spoken language
• Able to handle communication in familiar situations.
• Able to organise extended discourse but occasionally produces utterances that lack coherence and some inaccuracies and inappropriate usage occur.
• Maintains a flow of language, although hesitation may occur whilst searching for language resources. 29
• Although pronunciation is easily understood, L1 features may be intrusive.
• Does not require major assistance or prompting by an interlocutor.
LEVEL C1 . EFFECTIVE OPERATIONAL PROFICIENCY. CERTIFICATE IN ADVANCED ENGLISH:
Good operational command of the spoken language
• Able to handle communication in most situations.
• Able to use accurate and appropriate linguistic resources to express ideas and produce discourse that is generally coherent.
• Occasionally produces inaccuracies and inappropriacies.
• Maintains a flow of language with only natural hesitation resulting from considerations of appropriacy or expression.
• L1 accent may be evident but does not affect the clarity of the message.
LEVEL C2. MASTERY. CERTIFICATE OF PROFICIENCY IN ENGLISH: Fully operational command of the spoken language
• Able to handle communication in most situations, including unfamiliar or unexpected ones.
• Able to use accurate and appropriate linguistic resources to express complex ideas and concepts and produce extended discourse that is coherent and always easy to follow.
• Rarely produces inaccuracies and inappropriacies.
• Pronunciation is easily understood and prosodic features are used effectively; many features, including pausing and hesitation, are ‗native-like‘.