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Learner Assessment

Appropriate learner assessment can make a great difference in what learners learn, how quickly and how well they learn, and ultimately how successful they are in cross-cultural living and ministry.

In 15 sessions over five weeks, participants will:

  • understand the many benefits of good learner assessment
  • learn basic assessment principles and concepts
  • explore a variety of assessment types
  • evaluate their current assessment procedures
  • design assessment instruments that are appropriate for their learning situations


This is the third in a series of online courses for language coaches and is available only to those who have taken our online ICCT Foundations of Language Coaching class.

Printable pdf version of Language Coach Courses Descriptions and Registration Form for the three language coach courses.

Course dates for 2020

  • March 9 - April 10
  • June 29 - July 31
  • November 2 - December 4





This non-credit course consists of 15 sessions of approximately 2 hours each, to be completed over 5 weeks. In each session there will be one or more videos (usually narrated PowerPoint presentations), short readings, forums and/or applications questions to be submitted for feedback, and resources for further exploration. Participants interact frequently with the instructors and with each other.

Partial list of topics

  • What is learner assessment?
  • Benefits of good assessment
  • Principles of effective assessment
  • Foundational concepts in assessment
  • Building assessments upon clear goals and objectives
  • Understanding proficiency guidelines and their role in assessment
  • Oral proficiency assessment
  • Integrated performance assessment
  • Assessing specific components and skills: listening comprehension, grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, sociocultural competence
  • Using portfolios and self-assessment checklists
  • Developing a learner assessment plan
  • Revising your assessment procedures
  • Designing a variety of assessment types
  • Making sound decisions based on assessment results
  • Preparing learners for assessment
  • Training native-speaker raters


All Coaching Courses Registration Form for all three language coach courses (docx).


Q: Will I have to be online at a specific time each day?

A: The work can be done anytime that is convenient for you.

Q: Will I have to work on the course every day or can I devote one day per week to my course work?

A: The course content is divided into segments, three per week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday). However, you may work on the course less frequently if you need to do so. We strongly suggest that you give time to the course on at least one day each week.

Q: Will I need to be online the whole time I'm doing my work for this class?

A: You will not need to be online for everything you do, but the exact amount of time will vary from day to day. If Internet access is a problem, we can probably give you the videos by another means, such as via Dropbox.

Q: Will I need extremely fast and reliable Internet access?

A: Although it’s very helpful to have good Internet access, we realize this is not always possible. If you think this may be a problem, please email us so that we can discuss your situation.

Q: You say there is a lot of interaction with other participants and the instructors. How does that work?

A: In each of the 15 sessions there is a forum, which is an opportunity to discuss the topic for that day. This is done by writing your thoughts, which are shared with everyone in the class. You can ask questions and you can respond to questions or comments from others in very much the same way you would hold a discussion with a small group of people. One our of instructors also jumps into each daily forum multiple times to write comments on issues you bring up. In addition, at the end of each week you will respond to an applications question in which you apply what you are learning to some aspect of your individual coaching situation, and an instructor will give personal feedback on your response.

Q: I attended your one-week workshop on this topic. Will this course be nearly the same in content as the workshop?

A: There is some overlap between the workshop and this course, but much of the material for this course is new.

Q: How frequently do you plan to offer this course?

A: We plan to offer this course three or four times each year, or as needed. 

Q: In addition to courses for language coaches, what other online courses do you offer?

A: Six times each year we offer Second Language Acquisition courses which equip language learners with the essential knowledge and skills they need to become more efficient and effective learners. Visit  www.wheaton.edu/icct for more information about dates, costs, and course content. Be sure to take a look at our FAQs document that will tell you more about the courses.

Please email us with your questions.