Language Testing Group – New Event

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Dear students, faculty, and staff in SLS/TESOL/ELC

MSU Language Testing Group is excited to invite you all to attend a guest lecture by Dr. Sarah Goodwin on February 5th at 3:00 pm. Details on her talk and joining info below:

Language and Literacy Assessment for PreK-2 Students

To determine whether a language measure works well for test taker populations, it should be valid and reliable for all groups. Such groups include those whose first language is not English and/or those with limited speech production. If an early language battery is administered to multilingual children in just one of their languages, we have only a murky view of those children’s oral language skills. For diagnostic assessment, misclassification could result in children being directed into the wrong school services. Another issue is that assessments may not have been developed and validated with children from underrepresented groups or who would benefit from special accommodations. Sarah will share some of her lab’s research on two projects to develop language assessments for preschoolers and kindergarteners, specifically for phonological awareness/sensitivity, the understanding of language sound structure: 1) ATLAS, the Access to Literacy Assessment System, designed to be accessible for children with and without speech production difficulties; and 2) BAPS, the Bilingual Assessment of Phonological Sensitivity, for Spanish-English speaking children. She will also highlight differential item functioning (DIF), an item response analysis technique to check whether test items are measuring language proficiency in the same way for different groups. 

Sarah Goodwin, Ph.D., is a Research Associate in MSU’s Department of Human Development and Family Studies. In their Early Language and Literacy Investigations Laboratory (, she conducts psychometric analyses of early language assessments and manages lab data. She also teaches research methods for graduate students. Sarah’s research interests include language assessment, listening skills, and second language acquisition. Her work can be found in Language Assessment Quarterly; Assessing Writing; and Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools.

There is no registration necessary to attend this event!