Are Teachers Teaching to High-stake Language Tests? - An Exploratory Study at Vietnam National University, Hanoi
An exploratory study at Vietnam National University, Hanoi
When the pressure of a high-skate test is too high, does the teacher teach only to help students pass the test? The researcher attempted to find the answer by observing three classes representing three General English modules: General English 1 (GE1), General English 2 (GE2), and General English 3 (GE3) at Vietnam National University, Hanoi (VNU). The context of the present study is that GE1 and GE2 equip students with basic language knowledge, and at the end of the GE3 module, students will have to take the VSTEP (Vietnamese Standardized Test of English Proficiency). Only those who have reached level 3/6 can qualify for graduation. Initial research findings show that VSTEP had an impact on the students' contribution and the teachers' selection of class organization, content, and materials. Teachers in this study seemed to focus more on how to help students become accustomed to the paper format and test-taking strategies rather than developing their general language proficiency. However, the findings were only exploratory and can give suggestions for more studies on the issue in the future.
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