Oral Proficiency Testing and the Language Curriculum: Two Experiments in Curricular Design for Conversation Courses


  • Isabelle M. Kaplan C.A.P.E.S.

    1. Northwestern University with Margaret Sinclair
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    • 2

      Isabelle M. Kaplan (C.A.P.E.S., University of Clermont-Ferrand) is a lecturer in French at Northwestern University; Evanston, IL

    • 3

      Margaret Sinclair (Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley) is presently a free-lance writer


ABSTRACT This study examines the impact of the workshops in Oral Proficiency Testing organized by ACTFL and the Illinois Foreign Language Teachers Association (IFLTA). These workshops are designed to train college professors to administer oral interviews as a means of rating the level of oral proficiency of foreign language speakers. But the procedures of the interview and the criteria used by the rating scale have also served to reevaluate traditional curricula and to provide new ideas and guidelines for rethinking foreign language curricula so as to integrate the teaching of oral proficiency.