Vol. 2,No. 1, January 2012

Author(s): Farideh Hosseini, Nasser Hassanzadeh, Kamal Shayeg

Abstract: This research aimed at comparing the C-Test with the NC-Test in measuring the overall English language proficiency of Iranian EFL students. It also investigated the test-taking strategies based on Sasaki’s categorization of cloze test-taking strategies utilizing the semi-structured individual interviews to realize how these target students responded to each kind of the tests. Both kinds of the tests using identical texts consisted of 5 small texts with 100 deleted words. A total number of 40 Iranian EFL students participated in this study. Each participant took one kind of the cloze test and subsequently a semi-structured individual interview was conducted to 4 volunteer students to learn what happened in the mind of the testees while restoring the test items. The results of this research showed that there were not any statistically significant differences at the 0.05 level of significance between the C-Test and the NC-Test in measuring the English language proficiency of the students in both high- and low-language-ability groups. Hence, the NC-Test may be used as an alternative to the C-Test in measuring the English language proficiency of EFL students. The findings also affirmed that using third-word deletion technique influenced the discrimination power of the NC-Test. It also came out that both C-Test and NC-Test could consistently classify the subjects in their appropriate proficiency levels − elementary or advanced. The cloze test-taking strategies frequently used by volunteer subjects were Within Clause; Across Clause, Within Sentence; Extratextual; Guessing; and Missing.

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