The Oral Placement Test is a brief (5–7 minute) oral interview between one or more teachers and an individual student. During the interview, the student is asked to perform specific functions or tasks and to demonstrate his or her ability to talk about a variety of topics. The teacher evaluates the student’s performance on each of the functions or tasks. A set of example questions as well as sample answers are provided. These questions may be used to guide the interview.
Click here to download the Oral Placement Test.
To learn about scoring the Oral Placement Test, click here.
How to Give the Oral Placement Test
Prepare for the test
- Make copies of the Oral Placement Test – one for each student.
- Make one copy of each picture you will need to use during the test. (The pictures are included at the end of the test.)
Begin the test
- Tell students that the test will help you determine at which level of Connect they should begin studying. Tell them to relax, to have fun, and not to worry about making mistakes.
Give the test
- Begin by asking the student a few basic warm-up questions to put him or her at ease (What’s your name? How are you today? Do you have a brother or a sister in this school?)
- Based on your impression of the student’s oral abilities, select a function at an appropriate level. Ask several related questions. You may also add your own questions.
- After you have asked enough questions about the function to be able to rate the student, assign a rating (for information about scoring the Oral Placement Test, click on the Scoring button at left). Then select another function based on the student’s performance. For example, if the student gives very good or excellent responses, select a higher-level function; if the student has difficulty answering the questions, select a lower-level function.
Continue interviewing the student until you feel you have found the student’s optimum learning level – that is, the level at which he or she functions reasonably well but experiences some difficulty. At that point, stop the interview and determine the student’s oral skills score. Note that it should not be necessary to use more than a few of the functions and questions provided on the rating form.