A really important aspect that has emerged in our project is validity which must be put into consideration when developing and evaluating a language test, since it will allow us to evaluate the utility and appropriateness of the test for our particular purpose and context. Therefore, the validity of a test can only be established through a process of validation and in order to carry it out, a validation study has to be undertaken, on the basis of arriving at a conclusion as to whether the interpretations and uses of the test results are valid. To start with, the current conception of validity derives from the work of the American psychologist Samuel Messick in the 1970s and 1980s at the American educational and measurement organisation, Educational Testing Services, culminating in his seminal 1989 chapter on validity in Linn's Educational measurement. Messick (1989) shifted perspectives on validity from a property of a test to that of test score interpretation, and validity is now closely associated with the interpretation of test scores. Messick (1989: 13) states that "(v)alidity is an integrated evaluative judgment of the degree to which empirical evidence and theoretical rationales support the adequacy and appropriateness of inferences and actions based on test scores or other modes of assessment". Hence, Messick presents a unified concept where content and criterion validity are the score of the construct validity. In order to explain it better Messick conceptualizes the concepts in the following chart, which we consider relevant for our project. SOURCE OF JUSTIFICATION
| FUNCTION OF TESTING
| TEST INTERPRETATION
| TEST USE
| CONSTRUCT VALIDITY
| CONSTRUCT VALIDITY+ RELEVANCE/UTILITY
| CONSEQUENTIAL BASIS
| CONSTRUCT VALIDITY +VALUE IMPLICATIONS
| CONSTRUCT VALIDITY +RELEVANCE/UTILITY +SOCIAL CONSEQUENCES
| As we can observe in his chart of validity’s facets, he pays a great relevance on the social consequences and...
References: Alderson, J.C., C. Clapham and D. Wall. 2005. Language test construction and evaluation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association, & National Council on Measurement in Education. (1999). Standards for educational and psychological testing. Washington, DC: American Educational Research Association
Kane, M.T. 1992. An argument-based approach to validity. Psychological Bulletin 112: 527-535.
Messick, S. 1989. Validity. In R.L. Linn (ed). Educational measurement. New York:
Weir, C.J. 2005. Language testing and validation. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
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