Implementation and Assessment Challenges in Iranian Secondary High School EFL Program

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

1 Imam Ali University, Tehran, Iran

2 Departments of English Language, South Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

Abstract

Paradigm shift in language education has caused many countries including Iran to reshuffle their public EFL educational program. However, such a promising trend in Iran has entailed serious challenges, which necessitated this study aimed at collecting data from 70 teachers and 70 students to investigate the CLT challenges in terms of both teachers' pedagogical and assessment areas. A Partial Least Square Model (PLSM) addressed these two variables. The findings showed that the first three sub-traits of both CLT and testing knowledge have varying contributions to the main latent variables, respectively. Second, Friedman test indicated lack of compatibility between the respective dimensions as to the implementation of the program. Third, the post-hoc comparison tests revealed that teachers perceived CLT significantly lower than the three areas of CLT testing, knowledge of CLT tests and knowledge of developing CLT tests. Also, their knowledge of characteristics of CLT was significantly lower than their perceptions of CLT testing, and knowledge of CLT tests. However, their knowledge of the characteristics of CLT was not significantly different from that of developing CLT tests. Finally, their knowledge of techniques in CLT was significantly lower than their perceptions  of CLT testing, knowledge of CLT tests, and knowledge of developing CLT tests. In sum, the Iranian public EFL program still suffers from both implementation and assessment challenges necessitating remedial teacher education program.
 

Keywords


References

Abbasian, G. H. & Zare, M. (2014). Explorations in the standards of second language teaching. Lambert Academic Publ;ishing. 

Abasian, G.H. & Ebrahimi, K. (2105).  An investigation of the Iranian EFL teachers' refelctive teaching and their knowledge and applicatioin of EFL standards. Unpublished MA Thesis. IAU, Ahar Branch, Iran

Akbari, Z. (2015). Current challenges in teaching/learning English for EFL learners: The case of junior high school and high school. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 199, 394–401.

Amiri, M., & Birjandi, P. (2015). Reliability and Content Validity of a Comprehensive Discourse Completion Test of Interlanguage Pragmatics for Academic Situations. Sino-US English Teaching, 12(9), 654–659.

Bal, S. M. (2006). Teachers’ perceptions s of Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) in Turkish EFL setting theory vs. practices. Unpublished MA Thesis. Cukurova University, Adana, Turkey.

Delgado-Rico, E., Carretero-Dios, H., & Ruch, W. (2012). Content validity evidences in test development: An applied perspective1. International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology, 12(3), 449.

Farhady, H., Jafarpur, A., & Birjandi, P. (1994). Testing language skills: From theory to practice. Tehran: SAMT Publications.

Fulcher, G., & Davidson, F. (2007). Language testing and assessment. Routledge London, NY.

Gharbavi, A. (2014).  On CLT in Iran: Customers or Students’ Reflections.  International Journal of English and Education, 3(2), 65-79

Ghorbani, M. R. (2009). ELT in Iranian high schools in Iran, Malaysia and Japan: Reflections on how tests influence use of prescribed textbooks. Reflections on English Language Teaching, 8(2), 131–139.

 

Jamalifar, G., Tabrizi, H. H., & Chalak, A. (2014). Content Validity Analysis of the Master Program in TEFL. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 136, 293–297.

Khaniya,T.R. (1990).The washback effect of a  textbook-based test. Minburgh Working Papers  in Applied Linguistics,1, 48-58.

Kiany, G. R., Mahdavy, B., & Ghafar Samar, R. (2011). Towards a harmonized foreign language education program in Iran: National policies and English achievement. Literacy Information and Computer Education Journal (LICEJ), 2(3), 462–469.

Maftoon, P. (2002). Universal Relevance of Communicative Language Teaching Some Reservation. The International Journal of Humanities, 9, 49–54.

Nimehchisalem, V., Abbasi, M. M., Ebrahimzadeh, A., & Kalajahi, S. A. R. (2015). Iranian English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Learners’ Argumentative Writing Performance in Private Language Institutes. Asian Social Science, 11(15), 96.

Punitha Gopal, P., & bin Embi, M. A. (2014). Teachers’ Belief and Practices regarding Communicative Language Testing In Malaysian Secondary School.

Razmjoo, S. A. (2011). Language Proficiency Tests in the Iranian Context: Do They Represent Communicative Language Testing Model?. Journal of Pan-Pacific Association of Applied Linguistics, 15(2), 85–96.

Razmjoo, S. A., & Heydari Tabrizi, H. (2010). A Content Analysis of the TEFL MA Entrance Examinations (Case Study: Majors Courses). Journal of Pan-Pacific Association of Applied Linguistics, 14(1), 159–170.

SAK, G. (2008). An investigation of the validity and reliability of the speaking exam at a Turkish university (  Unpublished doctoral dissertation). Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey.

Sartori, R., & Pasini, M. (2007). Quality and quantity in test validity: how can we be sure that psychological tests measure what they have to? Quality & Quantity, 41(3), 359–374.

 

 Weir, J. C. (2005). Language testing and validation. New York: Palgrave Mcmillan.