"Performance is effectively assessed within tasks that test learners’ knowledge and skills in real-world situations, that is, in 'authentic' contexts in which students use the language in their lives both within and outside of the classroom.” (Shrum & Glisan)

This institute opens with a discussion of the phrase “performance towards proficiency” to highlight the connection between classroom performance and proficiency in real world contexts. Working together, participants will create a list of characteristics of classroom activities and tasks that build learners’ proficiency in the target language and will use the list to identify the purpose, effectiveness, and practicality of a variety of sample activities and tasks. With this background, participants will design receptive and productive communicative tasks for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of proficiency.

The institute will then focus on the evaluation of the learners’ performance on the tasks they create. Drawing on the performance descriptors identified by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR), and the World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA), participants will identify the domains (vocabulary, language control, text type, etc.) to evaluate learner performance on various tasks. Using model rubric scales and scoring guides, they will evaluate examples of learner performances on various tasks. Participants will then create rubrics for the tasks they designed earlier in the institute. The role and choice of formative assessments used in daily lessons to monitor learner progress towards greater proficiency will also be considered. As a capstone to the week, participants will apply their learning about task design and evaluation in the development of a standards-based Integrated Performance Assessment (IPA) to share with colleagues within this institute and also with a broader audience via the CARLA Assessment website.

Target Audience: This institute is designed for foreign language and ESL teachers at the late elementary through the postsecondary level, as well as teacher educators and preservice teachers. The institute is not intended for immersion teachers.

Donna Clementi is a well-known consultant and national speaker on curriculum and assessment development. With more than 30 years of experience teaching French grades K–12, Dr. Clementi is currently a world language methods instructor at Lawrence University, Appleton, Wisconsin.

See the full course description here.
Return to the CARLA Web site.

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Section Title
Assessing Language Learners’ Communication Skills via Authentic Communicative Performance Tasks
Online, instructor led
M, T, W, Th, F
9:00AM to 4:00PM
Jul 19, 2021 to Jul 23, 2021
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
  • Online
Delivery Options
Instructor Led Online  
Course Fee(s)
Section Details

Course Information: https://carla.umn.edu/institutes/2021/assess.html
Dates: July 19–23, 2021


  • This synchronous online institute will run from 9 am-4 pm (Central Time). The schedule includes many synchronous presentations throughout the day as well as time for independent or partner/group work and a break for lunch.
  • You must be available to participate for the entire day Monday–Friday.
  • Make sure you can meet the tech requirements for this institute.  
Contact Information:
For questions regarding course registration, materials, and content, please email carla@umn.edu.
For questions regarding system access, log-in, user name, or password, please email help@umn.edu or call 612-301-4357.
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