A washback investigation of the national matriculation English test in China from the perspective of test-takers' attitudes and behaviors
thesisposted on 2022-03-29, 03:48 authored by Jun Wang
In the field of Language Testing, 'washback' generally refers to the influences of language tests on teaching and learning. The increasingly significant role that language tests play in the modern world makes the washback effects a high-interest phenomenon nowadays. However, despite such popularity, there were still many washback contexts remaining unexplored and inadequate attention on how candidates-related factors affect the washback effects. Motived by these gaps, this study aims to conduct a washback investigation of the National Matriculation English Test in China from the perspectives of test-takers' attitudes and behaviors in Jiangxi province. This test is one of the most important language tests in China, while only a few studies have done in revealing the related washback effects on English education. Survey questionnaires were collected from 285 high-school students who were also the candidates preparing for the test. The results showed positive presence of the negative washback effects on students' attitudes toward the test, test preparation and English learning in general, but, only a moderate degree of washback intensity was found, which was inconsistent with the high-stakes test factor. Thus, this study suggests a further reconsideration on the influences of 'test stakes' factor on the extent of washback effects.