Technologically and linguistically adventurous EFL teacher, trainer, writer and manager

Posts tagged ‘IELTS’

Dissertation research request – IELTS examiners (guest post)

I’ve known Ben Naismith online for quite a while now. I’m sharing this request to help him along with his dissertation research – please complete it if you’re a current or former IELTS examiner.

Dear IELTS examiner,

I would like to request your participation in my dissertation research by completing an online questionnaire.

The purpose of this research study is to determine which quantitative features of writing correspond to expert assessors’ ratings. For that reason, you have been asked to complete this survey based on your own assessment expertise as either a current or former IELTS writing examiner.

If you are willing to participate, in Part 1 you will rate three learner essays and provide reasons for your ratings. In Part 2, you will be asked background information questions (e.g., about your teaching experience and education). In total, the survey should take approximately 20 minutes to complete. Please complete the survey on a computer rather than a mobile device. There are no foreseeable risks associated with this project, nor are there any direct benefits to you, and you will not receive any payment for participation. All responses are confidential, and results will be kept under lock and key. It is optional whether or not you provide your name. Participant names will only be used to ensure that there are no duplicate submissions. Your participation is voluntary, and you may withdraw from this project at any time.

Here is the link to the survey: https://pitt.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cYCXODEEMESPYGy  

If you have any questions, please email me at bnaismith@pitt.edu, and I would be happy to answer them. In addition, I would also ask that you share this request with any other current or former IELTS examiners in your professional network.  

Thank you for your consideration,

Ben Naismith

Ben is originally from Victoria, Canada and has been involved in language teaching for nearly 20 years. In this time he has worked in numerous countries and contexts as a teacher, teacher trainer, materials developer, assessment specialist, and researcher. Currently, Ben is completing his PhD at the University of Pittsburgh to help bridge the gap between academics and practitioners and to promote evidence-based practices. To this end, Ben’s research interests relate to lexical development, teacher pedagogy, second language acquisition, and learner corpora. His dissertation focuses on learners’ collocational proficiency and the impact of statistical lexical features on experts’ ratings.

Revising numbers and letters

I did this activity in an IELTS class this morning as a fun way to practise listening part 1, where you have to write information down including numbers and letters. These could be product codes, reference numbers and other combinations of numbers and letters.

You could also use it with lower level students to practise the alphabet or vocabulary you’ve studied recently.

Dictate a place name, interspersed with letters and numbers. This was my example (be careful with ‘o’ and zero):

w1o3lv4e79r12h6amp8t10on

Students should write it down as just a series of letters and numbers. Tell them it’s a place which they have to find by underlining the letters. The answer here is ‘Wolverhampton’, the town where I grew up.

They then think of a place name and add some numbers to it to dictate to a partner. They could also choose some vocabulary from a recent class, names of people, or reverse it by having a date with letters interspersed in it.

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