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    Curricula and evaluation

Curricula and evaluation

Evaluation is concerned both with assessing the learner’s language competences and with supporting learning processes through feedback and self-assessment. ECML materials in this area draw largely on the implementation of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages and on the European Language Portfolio.

Introduction
Council of Europe Resources
Other Resources
RELANG
ELP

Introduction

Evaluation and assessment are central themes in language education. They include a wide variety of aspects, ranging from the setting and grading of national and international standardised examinations to informal classroom tests. In addition, these themes address how learning can be supported and enhanced by appropriate tools such as portfolios or focused feedback.

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How the work of the Council of Europe contributes to evaluation and assessment

Two key issues in assessment are:

 a) what is the nature of the language competences which tests and examinations seek to assess? – i.e. what exactly are we testing? 

b) how can a learner’s proficiency be assessed using valid criteria and graded reliably? 

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How ECML projects contribute to evaluation and assessment

Several ECML publications provide guidelines and tools to accompany the CEFR. The publication ReLex: Relating language examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, teaching, assessment (CEFR) - Highlights from the Manual" assists users to cope with the complexities of language assessment and is the basis of the RELANG training seminars, offered by the ECML within its Cooperation Agreement with the European Union. These seminars aim to ensure quality in language testing and assessment and that learners’ test performances are expressed in terms of CEFR levels which are valid, understood and widely accepted.  

As far as the European Language Portfolio is concerned, the ECML hosts a dedicated website for the ELP to promote the pedagogical benefits of this instrument and to facilitate its use in practice. The various ELP-related projects of the ECML are listed here.

Evaluation and other thematic areas

Teacher and learner competences

Learner competences are at the core of both the CEFR and the ELP. The CEFR includes a chapter on Language learning and teaching (chapter 6). The ELP can play an important role in the development of learner autonomy.

Plurilingual and intercultural education 

The CEFR provides a comprehensive specification of plurilingual and intercultural competences, which form the basis of the FREPA project.

Sign languages

The project Sign languages and the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (PROSIGN) establishes European standards for sign languages for professional purposes in line with the (CEFR) and provides an overview of assessment descriptors and approaches.

Languages of schooling 

The project Language skills for successful subject learning (Language Descriptors)

highlights challenges for learners in subject classes where the language of instruction is not their first language. The focus is on minimum language standards in history/civics and mathematics. The language descriptors are linked to CEFR levels A2, B1 and B2.

Early language learning 

The handbook Assessment of young learner literacy linked to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (AYLITT) is designed to assist in the assessment of reading and writing in the primary language classroom on the basis of CEFR descriptors.

Featured resources

A quality assurance matrix for CEFR use

  It provides a quality assurance matrix for CEFR use and suggests clear, coherent, and relevant procedures to facilitate planning, teaching and assessment as well as promising practices that can be used by different stakeholders at the levels of policy, curriculum development, teaching and assessment. In addition there are promising practices that can be used by different stakeholders at the levels of policy, curriculum development, teaching and assessment.

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A guide to teacher competences for languages in education

  This website offers a comprehensive guide to teacher competences for languages in education. Users will discover how existing tools and frameworks can be categorised and described according to areas of competences. In addition, teacher educators in different countries explain how these tools are being implemented in practice.

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Current projects

CEFR Companion Volume implementation toolkit
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Mediation in teaching, learning and assessment
view project

Events


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6-8

Jul 2020
ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
POSTPONED: Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG): national training workshop
Innsbruck, Austria
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26-28

Aug 2020
ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG): national training workshop
Uppsala, Sweden
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2-4

Sep 2020
ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG): national training workshop
Belgrade, Serbia
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15-17

Sep 2020
ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG): national training workshop
Yerevan, Armenia
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15-17

Sep 2020
ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG): national training workshop
Brussels, Belgium
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Oct 2020 ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG) - Dates to be confirmed
National support event
Reykjavík, Iceland
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Nov 2020 ECML – EU cooperation agreement 2019-2020
Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG) - Dates to be confirmed
National training workshop
Helsinki, Finland
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