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Reflective practice: assessment of assignments in English for Specific Purposes

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Author(s): Galina Kavaliauskiené | Ligija Kaminskiené | Lilija Anusiené

Journal: Ibérica
ISSN 1139-7241

Volume: 14;
Start page: 149;
Date: 2007;
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Keywords: self-assessment | assignments | portfolio | reflective practice | linguistic development

ABSTRACT
The construct alternative assessment has been widely used in higher education. It is often defined as any type of assessment of learners who provide a response to an assignment. The key features of alternative assessment are active participation of learners in self-evaluation of their performance, and the development of reflective thinking through reflective thinking (Schön, 1983). The success of alternative assessment in language teaching is predetermined by student’s performance and demonstrates learner’s language proficiency in contemporary communicative classrooms. This paper aims at researching the influence of students’ evaluations of various assignments for their linguistic development in English for Specific Purposes (ESP). The study uses learners’ assessment of different assignments and learners’ in-course and post-course written reflections on benefits to language mastery. Learners’ assignments included were contributions to portfolios (dossiers), such as essays and summaries, oral presentations, short impromptu talks, creative tasks, tests, and self-assessment notes (reflections) on activities in learning ESP. Findings were obtained for two streams of the project participants. Results showed that self-assessment was beneficial for learners’ linguistic development. The context of learners’ reflections reveals that the attitudes to various assignments are affected by success or failure in students’ performance. Reflective practice might help teachers develop ways of dealing with previously identified difficulties and improve the quality of teaching.

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