2nd Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Language Testing

Edited By Glenn Fulcher, Luke Harding Copyright 2022
    674 Pages 27 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    This second edition of The Routledge Handbook of Language Testing provides an updated and comprehensive account of the area of language testing and assessment.

    The volume brings together 35 authoritative articles, divided into ten sections, written by 51 leading specialists from around the world. There are five entirely new chapters covering the four skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking, as well as a new entry on corpus linguistics and language testing. The remaining 30 chapters have been revised, often extensively, or entirely rewritten with new authorship teams at the helm, reflecting new generations of expertise in the field. With a dedicated section on technology in language testing, reflecting current trends in the field, the Handbook also includes an extended epilogue written by Harding and Fulcher, contemplating what has changed between the first and second editions and charting a trajectory for the field of language testing and assessment.

    Providing a basis for discussion, project work, and the design of both language tests themselves and related validation research, this Handbook represents an invaluable resource for students, researchers, and practitioners working in language testing and assessment and the wider field of language education.

    List of tables

    List of figures

    List of contributors


    Editorial. Glenn Fulcher and Luke Harding

    Section 1: Validity

    Chapter 1: Conceptions of validity. Carol A. Chapelle and Hye-won Lee

    Chapter 2: Articulating a validity argument. Michael Kane

    Chapter 3: Inference and prediction in language testing. Steven J. Ross

    Section 2: The Uses of Language Testing

    Chapter 4: Social dimensions of language testing. Richard Young

    Chapter 5: Designing language tests for specific purposes. Carol Moder and Gene Halleck

    Chapter 6: Revisiting language assessment for immigration and citizenship. Antony John Kunnan

    Section 3: Classroom Assessment and Washback

    Chapter 7: Classroom based assessment. Janna Fox, Nwara Abdulhamid and Carolyn Turner

    Chapter 8: Washback: looking backwards and forwards. Liying Cheng and Nasreen Sultana

    Chapter 9: Assessing young learners. Yuko Goto Butler

    Chapter 10: Dynamic assessment. Marta Antón and Próspero García

    Chapter 11: Diagnostic assessment in language classrooms. Eunice Jang and Jeanne Sinclair

    Section 4: Assessing the Language Skills

    Chapter 12: Assessing speaking. Fumiyo Nakatsuhara, Nahal Khabbazbashi and Chihiro Inoue

    Chapter 13: Assessing listening. Elvis Wagner

    Chapter 14: Assessing writing. Ute Knoch

    Chapter 15: Assessing reading. Tineke Brunfaut

    Section 5: Test Design and Administration

    Chapter 16: Test specifications. Jin Yan

    Chapter 17: Evidence-centred design in language testing. Chengbin Yin and Robery Mislevy

    Chapter 18: Accommodations and universal design. Jamal Abedi

    Chapter 19: Rater and interlocutor training. Larry Davis

    Section 6: Writing Items and Tasks

    Chapter 20: Item writing and item writers. Dong-il Shin

    Chapter 21: Writing integrated tasks. Lia Plakans

    Chapter 22: Test-taking strategies and task design. Andrew Cohen

    Section 7: Prototyping and Field Tests

    Chapter 23: Prototyping new item types. Susan Nissan and Elizabeth Park

    Chapter 24: Pre-operational testing. Benjamin Kremmel, Kathrin Eberharter and Franz Holzknecht

    Chapter 25: Piloting vocabulary tests. John Read

    Section 8: Measurement Theory in Language Testing

    Chapter 26: Classical test theory. J. D. Brown

    Chapter 27: Item Response Theory and Many-Facet Rasch Measurement. Gary Ockey

    Chapter 28: Reliability and dependability. Xun Yan and Jason Fan

    Chapter 29: Scoring performance tests. Evelina Galaczi and Gad Lim

    Section 9: Technology in Language Testing

    Chapter 30: Validity and the automated scoring of performance tests. Xiaoming Xi

    Chapter 31: Computer-based testing. Yasuyo Sawaki

    Chapter 32: Corpus linguistics and language testing. Sara Cushing

    Section 10: Ethics, Fairness and Policy

    Chapter 33: Ethics and fairness. F. Scott Walters

    Chapter 34: Standards in language proficiency measurement. Bart Deygers

    Chapter 35: Quality management in test production and administration. Nick Saville and Sarah McElwee


    Chapter 36: Language testing: where are we heading? Luke Harding and Glenn Fulcher



    Glenn Fulcher is Professor of Applied Linguistics and Language Assessment. He has served as president of the International Language Testing Association and as editor of the journal Language Testing. His Routledge book Re-examining Language Testing was joint winner of the SAGE/ILTA book award, together with the first edition of this Handbook.

    Luke Harding is Professor in Linguistics and English Language at Lancaster University (UK). His research interests are in applied linguistics and language assessment, particularly assessing listening and speaking, World Englishes and English as a Lingua Franca, and language assessment literacy and professional ethics. He is currently co-editor of the journal Language Testing.

    'The first edition of this volume received the highest possible kudos of any book in the field of language testing through receipt of the SAGE/International Language Testing book prize. This set a high and seemingly unattainable bar for the second edition. Remarkably, the current collection has paralleled and possibly even surpassed the excellence of the earlier edition. By compiling the latest thinking of a varied and high-caliber roster of contributors and serving as a crucial benchmark for tracking developments, the collective wisdom in this volume will, no doubt, continue to shape the future of the field. This book is an indispensable resource for new and seasoned language testing researchers and practitioners alike. Due to its interdisciplinary nature, I would highly recommend it for libraries at all institutions offering training in applied linguistics or related subjects.'

    Talia Isaacs, University College London, UK

    'Editors Fulcher and Harding have invited leading researchers across the globe to identify critical issues in the field of language testing and assessment and to make predictions about its future. 36 chapters, covering philosophical, social and technical aspects of the discipline, offer thought-provoking reading for anyone engaging with language tests, whether as researcher, practitioner or policy-maker.'

    Catherine Elder, University of Melbourne, Australia

    Praise for the 1st edition:

    'This thorough and comprehensive introduction to the practical and theoretical dimensions of language testing and assessment is set to become a standard reference. With chapters by leading international authorities in the field, it is both intellectually stimulating and practically useful, and is a must-read for those involved in language testing as test developers, test users, policy makers and researchers.'

    Tim McNamara, The University of Melbourne, Australia

    'I found this book to be the finest collection of cogent articles on language testing to date. The Handbook solidifies language testing as a discipline in its own right-one that has real-world impacts on society at large. Stimulating and clear, the articles will be a valuable resource for decades to come.'

    Paula Winke, Michigan State University, USA

    "In the collection of articles edited by Fulcher and Davidson, the editors have succeeded in assembling a set of contributors with an unparalleled level of expertise in their respective areas, and with distinctive talents in communication. The strength of this extremely well-edited collection lies in the interweaving of theoretical and practical aspects of language testing through nine broad themes, and in the structuring of individual contributions to provide a historical perspective, a discussion of current issues and contributions, and a consideration of future directions. The volume stands not only to have a wide impact on best practice in the field, but also in the development of language assessment literacy in other professionals who find themselves involved in activities of language assessment."

    2016 SAGE/ILTA Book Award statement