Educational cultural analysis of language assessment rubrics: a case study of Japanese language at a British University

Winch, Junko (2020) Educational cultural analysis of language assessment rubrics: a case study of Japanese language at a British University. Journal of Language for Specific Purposes (7). pp. 7-14. ISSN 2359-8921

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The standard of language assessment is considered to be similar within the same country, but it actually varies from institution to institution even within the UK. Rubrics are important for language teachers to access students' written work, and it also relates to teachers' objective or subjective marking. This paper looks at Japanese assessment criteria in a British STEM university where students study Japanese in the IWLP context. Using two dimensions from Hofstede et al.'s (2010) cultural taxonomy and Hall's (1976) concept of high- and low-context culture, Japanese language rubrics for the written assessment was analysed in 2017. The findings show that the rubrics examined in this study were under the influence of Hofstede et al.'s (2010) collectivist and strong uncertainty avoidance educational culture. The emphasis on the correct use of grammar was observed and also found that language teachers in this institution grade students' written work more objectively using quantitative method. The rubrics includes instructions which enhance the quality of grading consistent and standardise among all language teachers. This process also helps to justify the first marker's awarded marks to the second marker and also the external examiner. Recommendations are given to language teachers and managers who coordinate languages. Language teachers are recommended to inform students whether the focus is accuracy or creativity as this information affects students in working on their assessed work. It is also recommended for managers at language centres to revise periodically the definition of categories to examine if there are any duplication among the rubrics and update them. Incorporating some aspects of rubrics mentioned in this study may enhance the quality of language teachers' grading to be standardised and consistent.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: educational culture, higher education, Japanese language teaching, rubrics
Schools and Departments: School of English > Sussex Centre for Language Studies
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2020 12:01
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2020 12:01

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