Abstract

Brigham Young University (BYU) first implemented the Spanish Computer Adaptive Placement Examination (S-CAPE) during the Fall Semester of 1986 and it has been used ever since. The S-CAPE was designed to determine course placement into beginning and intermediate classes for students who have previously studied Spanish. A 10% increase occurred this year (2014) in students who have served missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Many of these returned missionaries gained language proficiency on their missions, and some go to BYU to begin or continue their studies. Because of the increase in enrollment of students with intermediate and advanced Spanish fluency, the BYU Department of Spanish and Portuguese needed a way to accurately place these students. This study analyzed the S-CAPE to see if it was reliable and capable of placing more advanced students. The S-CAPE was not originally designed to place students above SPAN 206. In addition, other factors that contribute to student placement at BYU are evaluated. Recommendations are made for improving the validity of the S-CAPE, as well as the language skills tested by the S-CAPE. Further recommendations are made to upgrade the process of placing students registering for Spanish at BYU.

Degree

MA

College and Department

Humanities; Spanish and Portuguese

Rights

http://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2014-12-01

Document Type

Thesis

Handle

http://hdl.lib.byu.edu/1877/etd7479

Keywords

placement test, test reliability and validation, advanced-level proficiency, Spanish language, returned missionaries

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