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Pre-recorded Session Poster (45 minutes)
Oct 16, 2020 12:00 Noon - Aug 31, 2021 01:45 PM(Asia/Ho_Chi_Minh)
20201016T1200 20201016T1345 Asia/Ho_Chi_Minh Different English varieties as listening comprehension test input: Why not?

Listening comprehension with its complex construct has posed challenges to professionals in the field of English language testing. With the growing role of English as an international language, one of the most critical issues is the inclusion of different English varieties in listening assessments to accurately represent the listening construct in students' target language use domain which, however, can give a certain group of listeners an unfair (dis)advantage due to their (un)familiarity with the accents. Given this dilemma, the aim of the paper is to examine the effects of accent on listening comprehension and provide suggestions on using accented English input in listening tests. The study adopts the approach of secondary research by reviewing already existing research on the influence of various English accents on students' test performance. The findings show that using only one English variety is a threat to assessment authenticity since it fails to reflect the target language use domain; meanwhile, using unmeasured accents as test input can create unfairness. The dilemma can be resolved by the implementation of the Strength of Accent Scale that can accurately represent the listening comprehension in reality without unfairly (dis)advantaging any students. Furthermore, introducing different English varieties in the classroom can reduce students' bias against non-native accents and highlight the necessity to develop multidialectal listening ability.

Pre-recorded Session VietTESOL International Convention 2021 convention@viettesol.org

Listening comprehension with its complex construct has posed challenges to professionals in the field of English language testing. With the growing role of English as an international language, one of the most critical issues is the inclusion of different English varieties in listening assessments to accurately represent the listening construct in students' target language use domain which, however, can give a certain group of listeners an unfair (dis)advantage due to their (un)familiarity with the accents. Given this dilemma, the aim of the paper is to examine the effects of accent on listening comprehension and provide suggestions on using accented English input in listening tests. The study adopts the approach of secondary research by reviewing already existing research on the influence of various English accents on students' test performance. The findings show that using only one English variety is a threat to assessment authenticity since it fails to reflect the target language use domain; meanwhile, using unmeasured accents as test input can create unfairness. The dilemma can be resolved by the implementation of the Strength of Accent Scale that can accurately represent the listening comprehension in reality without unfairly (dis)advantaging any students. Furthermore, introducing different English varieties in the classroom can reduce students' bias against non-native accents and highlight the necessity to develop multidialectal listening ability.

Lecturer
,
University of Languages and International Studies, Vietnam National University
No moderator for this session!
Mrs. Hien Hoang
Teacher
,
IIG Vietnam
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