This book brings together a collection of current research on the assessment of oral proficiency in a second language. Fourteen chapters focus on the use of the language proficiency interview or LPI to assess oral proficiency. The volume addresses the central issue of validity in proficiency assessment: the ways in which the language proficiency interview is accomplished through discourse.Contributors draw on a variety of discourse perspectives, including the ethnography of speaking, conversation analysis, language socialization theory, sociolinguistic variation theory, human interaction research, and systemic functional linguistics. And for the first time, LPIs conducted in German, Korean, and Spanish are examined as well as interviews in English.
This book sheds light on such important issues as how speaking ability can be defined independently of an LPI that is designed to assess it and the extent to which an LPI is an authentic representation of ordinary conversation in the target language. It will be of considerable interest to language testers, discourse analysts, second language acquisition researchers, foreign language specialists, and anyone concerned with proficiency issues in language teaching and testing.
1. Preface (by Celce-Murcia, Marianne); 2. Language Proficiency Interviews: A Discourse Approach (by He, Agnes Weiyun); 3. 1. Language Proficiency Interviews and Conversation; 4. Re-analyzing the OPI: How Much Does It Look Like Natural Conversation? (by Johnson, Marysia); 5. Evaluating Learner Interactional Skills: Conversation at the Micro Level (by Riggenbach, Heidi); 6. What Happens When There's No One to Talk to? Spanish Foreign Language Discourse in Simulated Oral Proficiency Interviews (by Koike, Dale); 7. 2. Turns and Sequences in Language Proficiency Interviews; 8. Answering Questions in LPIs: A Case Study (by He, Agnes Weiyun); 9. Framing the Language Proficiency Interview as a Speech Event: Native and Non-Native Speaker's Questions (by Moder, Carol Lynn); 10. Miscommunication in Language Proficiency Interviews of First-Year German Students: A Comparison with Natural Conversation (by Egbert, Maria M.); 11. Knowledge and Communication in Language Proficiency Interviews; 12. Knowledge Structures in Oral Proficiency Interviews for International Teaching Assistants (by Mohan, Bernard A.); 13. The Use of Communication Strategies in Language Proficiency Interviews (by Yoshida-Morise, Yumiko); 14. Meaning Negociation in the Hungarian Oral Proficiency Examination of English (by Katona, Lucy); 15. 3. Language Proficiency Interviews as Cross-Cultural Encounters; 16. Maintaining American Face in the Korean Oral Exam: Reflections on the Power of cross-Cultural Context (by Davies, Catherine Evans); 17. Confirmation Sequences as Intercational Resources in Korean Language Proficiency Interviews (by Kim, Kyu-hyun); 18. Divergent Frame Interpretations in Oral Proficiency Interview Interaction (by Ross, Steven); 19. "Let Them Eat Cake!" or how to Avoid Losing Your Head in Cross-Cultural Conversations (by Young, Richard); 20. Index of Names; 21. Index of Topics