Time limits and English proficiency tests: Predicting academic performance

African Journal of Psychological Assessment

Field Value
Title Time limits and English proficiency tests: Predicting academic performance
Creator Opperman, Ingrid
Subject English; Higher Education; Psychometrics higher education; English proficiency; Cloze procedure; vocabulary; time limits
Description English is the primary language of instruction in South African higher education, but entering students of first year are often not sufficiently proficient. Therefore, a need is evident for proficiency testing to guide intervention initiatives. International proficiency tests are lengthy and expensive, but Cloze procedure and vocabulary tests have been used as effective alternatives. However, time limits may affect observed reliability and predictive validity in the context of higher education. The present research assessed a cohort of first-year tourism management students using versions of the English Literacy Skills Assessment (ELSA) Cloze procedure and Vocabulary in Context tests under three time-limit conditions: normal, double and no time limits. Students in double and no time-limit conditions performed significantly better than the normal time-limit group. Group scores were correlated with, and significant predictors of, academic subject first-test scores. Better performance and more accurate prediction under extended time limits may be related to students attempting more questions. As the ELSA Vocabulary in Context was the better predictor in this research, the importance of non-technical vocabulary, as opposed to semantic and contextual understandings in Cloze procedure, is highlighted. Therefore, screening the English proficiency levels of students admitted to higher education institutions may be useful to flag likelihood of success and guide interventions.
Publisher AOSIS
Contributor Tshwane University of Technology
Date 2020-06-25
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — Cross-sectional
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/ajopa.v2i0.20
Source African Journal of Psychological Assessment; Vol 2 (2020); 9 pages 2617-2798 2707-1618
Language eng
Relation https://ajopa.org/index.php/ajopa/article/view/20/109 https://ajopa.org/index.php/ajopa/article/view/20/108 https://ajopa.org/index.php/ajopa/article/view/20/110 https://ajopa.org/index.php/ajopa/article/view/20/107
Coverage South Africa; Africa — —
Rights Copyright (c) 2020 Ingrid Opperman https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0