Washback Effects of a High-Stakes University Entrance Exam: Effects of the English Section of the University Entrance Exam on Future English Language Teachers in Turkey

| June 24, 2010
Title
Washback Effects of a High-Stakes University Entrance Exam: Effects of the English Section of the University Entrance Exam on Future English Language Teachers in Turkey

Keywords: washback effect, university entrance exam, high-stakes language tests, EFL teacher training

Authors
Ozgur Yildirim
Anadolu University, Turkey

Bio Data
Ozgur Yildirim is an EFL teacher trainer at Anadolu University, Eskisehir, Turkey. He earned his MA degree on Teaching English as a Foreign Language from Anadolu University, and his PhD degree on Second and Foreign Language Education from the State University of New York at Buffalo. His research interests include learner autonomy, high-stakes language testing, language learning strategies, and international education.

Abstract
English Component of the Foreign Language University Entrance Exam (ECFLUEE) is taken by tens of thousands of high school seniors each year in Turkey. It is a very high-stakes exam as it determines the future of most of its takers. This is the only English exam used for student admissions to EFL teacher training programs in Turkish universities. The purpose of the study reported in this paper was to investigate the effects of the exam on Turkey s future EFL teachers language proficiencies, and on their performances in their first year classes at university. Participants of the study were seventy pre-service English teachers and six instructors in the EFL teacher education department of a public university in Turkey. Results indicated that the exam has some negative effects on students language proficiency and on their performance in their first year classes at university. Some changes to the exam that might be useful are discussed in the last section of the paper.

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See pages: 92-116

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Category: Quarterly Journal, Volume 12 Issue 2