Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 12. Number. 4   December 2021                                         Pp. 3-18

Full Paper PDF


Applying Assessment Principles during Emergency Remote Teaching: Challenges and

Wid Hasen Allehaiby
Department of English, College of Science and Health Professions
King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Corresponding Author:

 Sara Al-Bahlani
English Department, University of Technology and Applied Sciences
Nizwa, Oman


Received:   4/8/2021               Accepted:  10/4/2021             Published: 12/15/2021


One of the main challenges higher educational institutions encounter amid the recent COVID-19 crisis is transferring assessment approaches from the traditional face-to-face form to the online Emergency Remote Teaching approach. A set of language assessment principles, practicality, reliability, validity, authenticity, and washback, which can be applied to any academic subject, are critical within the design of any task that aims to assess learning. This review paper discusses how assessment approaches need to be modified in a time of crisis. It determines the position assessment should adopt within emergency remote teaching methods and analyzes the fundamental characteristics of five principles of assessment and how they can be accomplished with emergency remote teaching approaches. Furthermore, this paper evaluates the vulnerability and viability of the five assessment principles, examines the application of online assessment on a holistic level, and puts forward a set of recommendations to ensure the assessment principles are achieved within emergency remote learning contexts. The paper concludes with the notion that the construct of time, which is inherent within the principle of practicality, is the most significant when developing online assessments as it is this characteristic that is the most at risk. In addition, we suggest that the assessments that are implemented during emergency remote learning involve open-ended, as opposed to close-ended, questions and highlight the importance of educators demonstrating flexibility and understanding toward their students.
Keywords: assessment principles, COVID-19 crisis, emergency remote teaching, formative assessment, summative assessment


Cite as:  Allehaiby, W. H. , & Al-Bahlani, S. (2021). Applying Assessment Principles during Emergency Remote Teaching: Challenges and Considerations.  Arab World English Journal, 12 (4) 3-18.


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Received: 4/8/2021  
Accepted: 10/4/2021 
Published: 12/15/2021 

Dr. Wid Allehaiby is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English at King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Saudi Arabia. Her research merges the fields of applied linguistics and educational technology and focuses on the implementation of language instruction, pedagogical practices, and facilitation of learners’ engagement using non-conventional learning tools, such as social networking sites. ORCID: 0000-0002-4320-7429

Dr. Sara Al-Bahlani is an Assistant Professor and Head of the English Department at the University of Technology and Applied Sciences-Nizwa in Oman. Her research focused on language assessment and teacher assessment literacy, digital assessment literacy and integrating technology in the language classroom. She worked as an English, sociolinguistics and academic skills lecturer and course coordinator. ORCID: