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Developing an assessment methodology for a universal maritime english proficiency test for deck officers

: Toncheva, S.; Zlateva, D.; John, P.

18th Annual General Assembly of the International Association of Maritime Universities - Global Perspectives in MET: Towards Sustainable, Green and Integrated Maritime Transport, IAMU 2017. Vol.1 : Varna, Bulgaria, 11-14 October 2017
Varna: Nikola Vaptsarov Naval Academy, 2017
ISBN: 978-954-8991-96-4
International Association of Maritime Universities (IAMU Annual General Assembly) <18, 2017, Varna>
Conference "Global perspectives in MET - Towards Sustainable, Green and Integrated Maritime Transport" <2017, Varna>
Fraunhofer IDMT ()

The paper presents the adopted approach to develop a methodology for assessing the language proficiency of Deck officers in Maritime English. The methodology design is a collaborative effort involving partners from six countries and is a core outcome of the EU-funded Erasmus + MariLANG Project. The current context of teaching and assessing Maritime English has been determined by the latest amendments (Manila, 2010) to the original International Convention on Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (IMO STCW-78 Convention). In the recently revised (2015) IMO Model Course 3.17 Maritime English the IMO recommends the assessment of communicative competence without clearly defining language proficiency levels recognised by international MET institutions. Therefore, there is a need for a standardized instrument to measure the language proficiency in Maritime English. Such a proficiency test can be used as a benchmark test against which MET institutions can compare their students. This paper will discuss the aspects to be considered during the development of test specifications and why these are useful to guide the entire process of test development to ensure a balance between different aspects of test usefulness, e.g. reliability, construct validity, authenticity, etc.