This module will raise your awareness of key principles in language evaluation. You will look at the full range of formative and summative purposes of testing and assessment in language education and apply them to test design, construction and evaluation, being able to critically evaluate institutional, national and international language examinations. You will create specifically designed tests for relevant institutional contexts and familiarise yourself with new perspectives in testing and assessment. Finally, you will develop pathways into TEA research.

This module carries 30 credits.


" I think we as teachers need to accept that testing is a component of teaching, and to question the principles used by publishing houses and testing bodies. This course enourages and enables teachers to use assessment more proactively, based on a stronger understanding of what testing involves.  "

Jim - 2019

Is this course for you?

Location: Online
Experience: Degree. language teaching experience
Language Level: B2/C1 or higher
Course dates:
15 January - 20 March 2024
16 September - 20 November 2024
Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma or MA awarded by University of Chichester
Course Length: 8 weeks (+ 1 week break)
Course fees: £1210
Minimum age: 18
Max class size: 18
Tutor-led and highly interactive
Live and asynchronous eLearning platforms
Specialist ELT eLibrary
Accredited by AQUEDUTO

Course content

The key principles of evaluation in language education
The full range of formative and summative purposes of testing and assessment in language education
How to apply the key principles of language test design, construction and evaluation, including developing detailed specifications
How to create tests designed specifically for relevant institutional contexts
New perspectives in testing and assessment, including a variety of ‘authentic’/’alternative’ assessment procedures, including self-assessment, peer assessment and portfolio assessment
How to evaluate institutional, national and international language examinations
How to use basic item analysis and test analysis
How to develop possible pathways into research in ‘TEA’

Assessment (written after completion of the course and supervised at distance by tutors):

A portfolio (50%) containing TWO out of the following three options:

  1. A critical review of a test or exam of significance in your professional context.
  2. An INSET session or sessions for a group of colleagues, dealing with an aspect of TEA covered during the course and of relevance to your needs.
  3. A test or assessment procedure designed to meet a significant need in your workplace

A main assignment of around 3,000 words (50%), developing further an area covered in the course which is of particular interest to you and/or of special relevance to the your workplace/professional context.

" This course has given me a much better understanding of researching, designing, and developing a test. "

Participant - 2019

" As a full time examiner, I feel the coure has made me think about what I do on a daily basis. I believe it will help me become better and better at my job. "

Participant - 2019

Further Information

Online courses are broken down into individual units and activities, forming a clear structure. Tasks will be interactive, involving voice chat, forums and community walls, and they will utilize a range of multimedia including images, audio files and videos. Participants need a computer, a headset (with microphone) and an Internet connection. You can do much of the course on a tablet or mobile device, but will need a computer for certain activities.

All participants have access to NILE’s extensive ELT e-library and the NILE digital Tasks are interactive, involving live online sessions, forums and community walls, and utilise a range of multimedia including images, audio files and videos.

All NILE’s courses involve a significant element of English language improvement and/or development of language awareness.

MA Module Leader: Anna Whinnett

Anna Whinnett Anna is a senior examiner, teacher trainer and consultant with specific expertise in ESP and language testing and assessment. Her ELT career began as a language school EFL teacher more than 20 years ago. She has been an online tutor for almost a decade teaching and supporting international Master’s students in UK higher education, and as an external examiner/ adviser she is involved in the development and quality assurance of EAP programmes in the UK and abroad.

Anna’s qualifications include an MA in Language Testing a postgraduate Dip TESOL and the LTCL Diploma TESOL.

Available dates:

Course dates Location Course length
16 September - 20 November 2024 Online 8 weeks