English for Academic Purposes - Information Sheets

English for Academic Purposes Information Sheet

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22751 version 4: Read and process information in English for academic purposes

Published February 2020. This is a new document to replace previous clarifications and address issues that have arisen from moderation and the update to Version 4 of the standard.

Level of the standard: Guidance Information 2

This standard is set at New Zealand Qualifications Framework level 4 and is informed by level mid-B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. It attests to a learner’s readiness for the academic demands of undergraduate degree or diploma courses.

Academic purpose: Guidance Information 7 and 9

Academic purpose refers to the learner’s focus for reading the text and will be in the form of a research question. This question must be provided or approved by the assessor and will be stated explicitly in the assessment materials. It is essential that learners and assessors are clear about the purposes for the readings.

Texts used for reading and processing: Guidance Information 4

Two texts are required to be read, each for a different academic purpose. The minimum word length across both texts is 3,000 words.

The standard requires learners to process information from each text separately. Comparisons of information from the two texts and/or personal response to ideas in the texts are not assessed by this standard.

Factors such as sentence structures, overall text structure and complexity of ideas, as well as the level of language, need to be considered when determining the overall suitability of texts. Feature articles from magazines such as Time, or New Zealand Listener, and academic texts used in senior secondary subjects would usually be appropriate. The Assessment Support Material provides an example of a suitable text.

Presentation of evidence: Guidance Information 5 and 6

Evidence could be presented in a range of oral, visual, written or multi-modal forms. Care should be taken to ensure that the form selected allows learners to meet the requirements of both Performance Criteria (PC). To achieve the standard, learners must meet both PCs twice – once for each text.

Assessors must take steps to ensure that the evidence presented is authentic learner work, but it does not have to be gathered in formal test situations. Discussion of the reading texts with other candidates and/or listening to or observation of others’ responses is not appropriate.

Assessment tasks need to provide learners with the opportunity to independently demonstrate the requirements of the standard. Learners should be able to demonstrate reading and processing of the majority of each text. For example, a task that requires the reading and processing of only the first page of a text does not meet the intent of the standard.

Assessors need to ensure that the level of scaffolding does not limit learners’ independence. A reading, processing and application approach as modelled in the Assessment Support Material is appropriate.

Identification, analysis and evaluation of meanings: Performance Criterion 1.1

Learners need to demonstrate that they can identify ideas from the text that are relevant to their academic purpose. Therefore, assessment tasks will require learners to do this themselves – the identification of ideas by the assessor does not allow learners to meet this PC. Learners need to show both an understanding of the literal meanings of each text, and either the implied or inferred meaning/s.

Once understanding is demonstrated, this information will be analysed and evaluated to determine its relevance to the academic purpose. Evaluation is implicit in tasks that ask learners to independently prioritise or rank items, but learners can provide explicit evidence of evaluation through discussion of the usefulness, reliability, strength/validity of views expressed in the text.

Assessors may provide learners with specific questions to respond to in order to generate this evidence. Where learners are undertaking self-directed research, they should be given examples of generic questions to guide them. Evidence for this PC could be provided in a number of ways, e.g. data charts, notes, annotations or graphic organisers.

Application of relevant information: Performance Criterion 1.2

Having analysed and evaluated key information, the learner must now apply it in a way that matches their academic purpose, answering their research question. Learners may refer to the text, but most of the material will need to be in their own words. Evidence will incorporate some elements of summary and synthesis, and be presented in forms such as paragraph/s, graphic organiser or slideshow presentation.

If learners are provided with templates, assessors must ensure that the level of scaffolding within the template does not jeopardise learners' ability to independently demonstrate competency against the standard.

 

 
 
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