Pearson Education Grant projects 2016 - 2018

The LTRC was awarded two research grants from Pearson Education in 2016, focusing on Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE A).

Study 1. Test preparation practices and their links to score gains on the Pearson PTE

This study explored the nature and extent of test preparation for the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE A) and any links between test preparation activities and improved test performance

Person at computer

The study's findings offer insights into the ways candidates prepare for the PTE A in the Australian context, where other tests such as International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for example, have been dominant for many decades. Of particular interest to the field, is the question of whether a different test like the PTE A, with design features that set it apart from tests like IELTS and Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), will generate different kinds of washback from that documented in published research on other language tests.

Sponsor / grant scheme

Pearson Education / Pearson Education Grant round 2016

Project team members

Associate Professor Ute Knoch, Annemiek Huisman

Contact

Associate Professor Ute Knoch

Study 2. Stakeholder perceptions of the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE A) for skilled migrant selection

This study examined the perceptions and actions of international accounting graduates in response to the use of PTE A as part of migrant selection processes in Australia

Calculator image

PTE A is one of the English tests that can be used to evidence English ability as part of Australian visa applications, including for permanent skilled migration. PTE A is accepted by all Australian universities, as well as by professional associations and state government departments. This study examined the perceptions and actions of international accounting graduates in response to the use of PTE A as part of migrant selection processes in Australia. We investigated these stakeholders' experiences of PTE A and understandings of PTE A scores, and the ways in which these experiences and understandings influence decision making and actions to produce test consequences. Little is known about how test takers perceive current score requirements for skilled migration in Australia, nor about how their behaviours are influenced by their experiences and perceptions of tests and test scores. Study outcomes aimed to inform engagement efforts with stakeholder groups, provide evidence of impact relevant to PTE A validity claims, and contribute to theoretical efforts in the field of language testing to better explain the complex and multifaceted effects of test use in such high stakes policy contexts.

Sponsor / grant scheme

Pearson Education / Pearson Education Grant round 2016

Project team members

Dr Kellie Frost

Contact

Dr Kellie Frost