Teaching development grants final and financial report: Further TELT development for recruitment and placement assessment

Jane Elizabeth Mary LOCKWOOD, Michelle Reyes RAQUEL, Derrick Jason STONE, Tony LEE, Trevor Grahame BOND, Magdalena Mo Ching MOK

Research output: Other contributionTeaching Development Grants (TDG)


Last year the Centre for Language in Education (CLE) developed and piloted an English language proficiency test - the Tertiary English Language Test (TELT) for a range of internal and external educational and reporting purposes. The specific purposes to date comprise screening and recruitment of non-JUPAS/non-local students and placement into appropriate proficiency levels within CLE English courses. Substantial work was achieved in 2006/07 to develop a valid and reliable tool to screen and place Year 1 students into appropriate proficiency pathways. The placement test currently comprises a reading, listening and vocabulary test for Non-English major students with an additional speaking and writing test for English major students. As HKIEd internationalises, this tool will be more broadly used for screening and placement. This submission outlines one area of further development of TELT over the next 12 months. CLE requires more test texts and test items for the MCQ testing of reading, listening and vocabulary. At present we have a placement test comprising 82 testing MCQ items and small number of listening and reading texts. Over the last 12 months, this first test has been trialled and validated using rasch analysis. The test was then used extensively in the placement of both JUPAS and NON-JUPAS students into the 3 levels of CLE English enhancement courses, namely Foundation, Bridge and Access. The success of the placement tool this year (07/08) is evidenced in the results, where the test helped to 'sort' the students effectively across the three levels of proficiency with specific reference to sorting the Bridge and Foundations levels. (This was not effectively done using UE grades in the HKALE where new students with UE E bunched into Foundations in the previous year 06/07). Although the placement test is secure, we aim to expand the number of texts and test items (reading, listening and vocabulary) in the TELT placement databank. This enables us to vary the test from time to time and thereby improve the security of the test. Furthermore, we anticipate a heavier usage of the placement test as HKIEd continues to recruit from the mainland and internationally and requires a reliable indicator of English language proficiency level. In this next phase we hope to select more texts for reading, listening and more vocabulary items and write enough MCQ items to increase the databank by 100%, i.e. about 100 new items. We will also focus on determining 'cut off' points with a smaller standard error of measurement - this will mean that we can implement a conservative 'multiple cut-point' strategy which will inform CLE final placement in class levels. This will further assist CLE teachers to be clearer about the language proficiency articulation of the curriculum from one level to the next. We expect this phase to be completed within a 12 month period using the combined expertise in CLE and CARD.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2010


Lockwood, J., Raquel, M., Stone, D., Lee, T., Bond, T., & Mok, M. (2010). Teaching development grants final and financial report: Further TELT development for recruitment and placement assessment. Hong Kong: The Hong Kong Institute of Education.


  • Teaching Development Grant (TDG) Report
  • TDG project code: T3309
  • Period: TDG 2007-2008
  • Teaching Development Grant (TDG)


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