On Empiricism and Objectivity

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David Wiese


Even under the best of circumstances, placement testing is subjective. The ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines (ACTFL, 1985) and the updated ACTFL Writing (Breiner-Sanders, Swender, & Terry, 2001) and Speaking (ACTFL, 1999) Proficiency Guidelines are yet another example. The core of the problem is the use of purely descriptive guidelines in lieu of measurement guidelines that incorporate empirical evidence into the scales.

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