Focus on Assessment centres on reminding teachers of the pedagogical purpose of language assessment and using the results of assessment to plan future lessons and help improve student learning. The research discussed aims to guide teachers in their planning, activities and assessment of their learners’ progress.
The book is divided into five chapters. Each chapter contains Classroom Snapshots which are authentic classroom situations and interactions between teachers and students, or students and their peers. Each snapshot is accompanied by questions or key concepts to reflect on while reading. There are also Activities in each chapter which provide the reader with the opportunity to reflect or to have more in-depth discussions with colleagues.
The Spotlight Studies give details and results of case studies which guide the reader in different approaches to help them make decisions on the best assessment methods for their own context.
The Activities and the Classroom Snapshots give teachers the opportunity to think and reflect on their own practice, and allow teachers to make the material relevant to their own situation. At the beginning, teachers are invited to complete a questionnaire to raise awareness of key issues surrounding assessment. In the final chapter, the author invites readers to revisit the questionnaire, having read through the research, to see if their opinions have changed. The book closes with the author giving her responses to the same questions and offering some suggestions for further reading.
This book has a clear Glossary which is a useful guide to new terminology that arises over the course of Chapters 1 to 4. Focus on Assessment also gives plenty of opportunities to reflect on examples, case studies. While the book is aimed at language teachers at primary and secondary level, it is also appropriate for anyone seeking to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the purpose, use and methods of assessment, which in turn will allow them to provide their learners with more meaningful assessment and a better overall learning experience.
This book is part of the Oxford KeyConcepts for the Language Classroom series. The series aims to make research topics which are relevant to second language teachers more accessible. It is designed primarily for teachers of English in primary- and secondary-level contexts.