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The challenge of validation: assessing the performance of a test of productive vocabulary

Fitzpatrick, T. and Clenton, J. (2010) The challenge of validation: assessing the performance of a test of productive vocabulary. Language Testing, 27 (4). 537- 554. ISSN 0265-5322

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1177/0265532209354771


This paper assesses the performance of a vocabulary test designed to measure second language productive vocabulary knowledge.The test, Lex30, uses a word association task to elicit vocabulary, and uses word frequency data to measure the vocabulary produced. Here we report firstly on the reliability of the test as measured by a test-retest study, a parallel test forms experiment and an internal consistency measure. We then investigate the construct validity of the test by looking at changes in test performance over time, analyses of correlations with scores on similar tests, and comparison of spoken and written test performance. Last, we examine the theoretical bases of the two main test components: eliciting vocabulary and measuring vocabulary. Interpretations of our findings are discussed in the context of test validation research literature. We conclude that the findings reported here present a robust argument for the validity of the test as a research tool, and encourage further investigation of its validity in an instructional context

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > English Language and Applied Linguistics
ID Code:33235

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