The purpose of this essay is thus four-fold: (1) to define briefly the notion of culture as it has been most commonly understood and integrated in North American secondary and post-secondary foreign language courses; (2) to describe the place of culture in the ACTFL
guidelines and provide a succinct literature review of rubrics or guidelines for the assessment of cultural proficiency in the U.S.; (3) to provide information from a recent survey on the teaching of culture in North American Italian programs; and (4) to offer some suggestions for future assessment of Italian cultural learning.
Moreover, as we will see in the next section where we review the ACTFL
standards for cultural competence, the ability to reflect on one's own cultural attitudes and beliefs is one measure of that competence.
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the OPI procedure was introduced to the academic world through the work of the Educational Testing Service and the ACTFL
. Through ACTFL
's efforts, thousands of educators have been trained in the procedure (Clark & Clifford, 1988).
The COPI used by ACTFL
(3) is divided into several parts and the examinee goes through nine "phases": "welcome, information on the purpose and structure of the COPI, input and correction of personal information, self-assessment of proficiency level, listening to an adequate response to a sample task(s), practice with the same sample task(s), responding to performance tasks (the actual test), feedback about the levels of the tasks that the examinee took, and closing" (Kenyon and Malabonga 65).
While this innovation may raise examinees' interest in the exam, it also implies that a very large pool of tasks will need to be developed in order to adequately represent "interesting" topics at all of the ACTFL
levels, such that the adaptive algorithm may select a number of unique tasks close to the examinee's proficiency (see related discussion in Flaugher, 2000; Wainer & Mislevy, 2000).
In November, CLASS will celebrate its 20t" anniversary during" a conference being held with the much larger ACTFL
. Lee says professional support is vital for Chinese language teachers in the U.S., many of whom may not have colleagues in their schools.
While a typical full-length Simulated Oral Proficiency Instrument (SOPI) presents 15 tasks to the examinee, the first 7 tasks may be administered as a "short form" for examinees at ACTFL
Intermediate and Advanced levels.
The text also adheres to the interdisciplinary approach by paying tribute to the five C's of foreign language education identified by the ACTFL
task force-Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities.
I proverbi rispondono, cosi, anche alle cinque C promosse da ACTFL
negli Standards for Foreign Language Learning-comunicazione, culture, connessioni, confronti, comunita (1996: 24).
Abu-Zer also noted that the test is compatible with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) and it benefitted from the American Language on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL
), pointing out that it is implemented with a high-level of accuracy and objectivity.
Most of the Hello-Hello language programs are developed in collaboration with The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL
), which is the largest association of teachers and administrators of all languages at all levels, serving more than 12,000 educators.