Volume 19 (2016) Pages 3-11
The General English Proficiency Test (GEPT) is a 5-level, criterion-referenced EFL testing system implemented in Taiwan to assess the general English proficiency of EFL learners at all levels. The GEPT was designed as a skills-based test battery assessing both receptive (listening and reading) and productive (speaking and writing) skills. Since its first administration in 2000, the GEPT has been taken by more than 6.5 million learners, and has become the largest-scale standardized English test in Taiwan. In the wake of the introduction of productive skills to the university entrance examination system in Japan, this talk aims to share the GEPT experience. Several key issues about speaking and writing tests will be presented in relation to the socio-cognitive framework for validation (Weir, 2005). A number of examples about GEPT validation will be illustrated to demonstrate that both a priori and a posteriori validity evidence are required to establish test quality. The paper also emphasizes the importance of facilitating communication between test developers and stakeholders when introducing new assessment.