Language Testing and Assessment

Module code: EN7301
Module co-ordinator: Professor Glenn Fulcher

Language testing is endemic to 21st century society. It is used to screen students for entry to educational institutions, employ professionals such as pilots and health professionals, and restrict immigration. The results of language tests can enhance your career, or restrict your life chances. This module therefore explores how we test English language with specific reference to validation theory (the justification for score use in decision making). We look at the process of test design and the principles that underlie good practice. In the consideration of how we develop and build good language tests we continually look to the impact that their use will have on individuals and society.

Topics covered

  • Approaches to 'validity' and 'validation'
  • Large-scale institutional testing
  • Classroom assessment
  • Models of communicative language ability
  • Writing test specifications
  • Designing test tasks and items
  • Evaluating tests


150 hours over 20 weeks to include:
  • Reading course materials - reading, watching and listening to required and recommended resources
  • Engaging in online module activities/discussion forum 
  • Independent study
  • Writing the module assignment


  • 3,000-word portfolio 
  • you can combine the assessment for this module and another option module (to be approved by your course tutor) into a 6,000-word project.