Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Special Issue on CALL Number 8. July 2022                       Pp.299-313

Full Paper PDF


Online Language Assessment the Exception, Not the Rule: For Inclusive Language

Vipin K Sharma
English Language Institute, Jazan,
University, Saudi Arabia
Corresponding Author:

Wael A. Holbah
English Language Institute, Jazan University,
Jazan, Saudi Arabia


Received: 01/31/2022             Accepted: 06/27/2022            Published: 07/25/2022


The study investigates teachers’ perceptions of the use of online language assessment (OLA) using technology and examines the scope of using online applications to validate the mode of assessment. It looks for EFL teachers’ opinions of OLA to comprehend the many worries associated with the issues and improve the online assessment tools. The researchers included the teachers who taught and assessed their students online using the Blackboard application at Jazan University, Saudi Arabia. The study was descriptive, using an online survey for data collection. Participants were from different colleges and nationalities teaching English to students enrolled in the preparatory course. Descriptive analysis of the open-ended questionnaire and interview data illustrated the salient features of the online assessment were instant feedback, randomized question order, statistical description of the exam, and immediate scores on exam completion. Teachers reported the effectiveness of the online assessment system but with some remedial actions to further improve the online assessment systems. Also, quality prospects, in pandemic-like situations, should not be thought of as offline teaching and challenges in various domains like language assessment security, time limitation, internet accessibility, ethical aspects, digital literacy and expertise, technological failures, and learning outcomes. Finally, the article offers a roadmap for planning, developing, implementing, evaluating, and carrying on research in online language assessment in new and in crisis contexts.
Keywords: Computer-aided assessment, computer-assisted language learning, language skills, motivation,
online assessment, online tests

Cite as:  Sharma, V. K., & Holbah, W. A. (2022).  Online Language Assessment the Exception, Not the Rule: For Inclusive Language Learning.  Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Special Issue on CALL (8).299-313.


Abduh, M. (2021). Full-time online assessment during COVID-19 lockdown: EFL teachers’ perceptions.
Asian EFL Journal, 28(1), 1–22.

Abedi, J. (2017). Utilizing accommodations in assessment. In E. Shohamy, I. G. Or, & S. May (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education: Language testing and assessment (3rd ed., 303–322). Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

Adnan, N.R., Abdullah, W.K.W., Muda, R., Sallem, N.R.M. (2019). Is current formative assessment still relevant in turning students
into deep learners? TEM Journal, 8(1), 298-304.

Ali, Md. M., & Hamid, M. O. (2020). Teaching English to the test: Why does negative

washback exist within secondary education in Bangladesh? Language Assessment

Quarterly, 17(2), 129–146.

Beaton, A., & Zwick, R. (1990). The effect of changes in the National Assessment: Disentangling the NAEP 1985-86 reading anomaly. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service.

Bodmann, S.M., & Robinson, D. H. (2004). Speed and performance differences among computer-based and paper-pencil tests. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 31(1), 51–60.

Chapelle, C. (2020). Discussion. In E. Voss (Chair), Exploring the future of online language testing and assessment: Technological opportunities and challenges, 618 Language Testing, 37(4).

Clariana, R.B. (1997). Considering learning style in computer-assisted learning. British Journal of Educational Technology, 28, 66-68.

Conole, G., & Warburton, B. (2005). A Review of computer assisted assessment. ALT-J, Research in Learning Technology, 13(1), 17-31.

Daniels, M., Sarte, E., & Cruz, J. D. (2019). Students’ perception on e-learning: A basis for the development of e-learning framework in higher education institutions. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 482, 1-7.

Doculan, J. (2016). E-Learning readiness assessment tool for Philippine higher education institutions. International Journal on
Integrating Technology in Education,
5(2), 33-43.

Elvis Wagner & Anna Krylova (2021) Temple University’s ITA Placement Test in Times of COVID-19. Language Assessment Quarterly, 18(1), 12-16.

Furaidah, F., Saukah, A., & Widiati, U. (2015). Washback of English national examination in the Indonesian Context. TEFLIN Journal – A Publication on the Teaching and Learning of English, 26(1), 36.

Galaczi, E., & Taylor, L. (2018). Interactional competence: Conceptualisations, operationalisations, and outstanding questions. Language Assessment Quarterly, 15(3), 219–236.

Ghanbari, N. & Nowroozi, S. The practice of online assessment in an EFL context amidst COVID-19 pandemic: views from teachers. Language  Testing Asia, 11, 27.

Haas, C., & Hayes, R. (1986). What did I just say? Reading problems in writing with the machine. Research in the Teaching of
English, 20
, 22-35.

Helfaya, A., & O’Neill, J. (2019). Staff reflections on using E -assessment feedback in the digital age in Advances Chapter 16 in Higher Education and Professional Development. chapter/ staff-reflections on
using -e-assessment -feedback-in-the-digital-age

Hedayati, H., & Marandi, S. S. (2014). Iranian EFL teachers’ perceptions of the difficulties of implementing
CALL. ReCALL, 26(3), 298–314.

Jahanban-Isfahan, H., Hadidi Tamjid, N. & Seifoori, Z. (2017). Educational technology in Iranian high schools: EFL teachers’ attitudes, perceived competence, and actual use. Education Research International, 2017, 1-9.

Khatoony, S., & Nezhadmehr, M. (2020). EFL teachers’ challenges in integration of technology for online classrooms during Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Iran. AJELP: Asian Journal of English Language and Pedagogy, 8, 1–16.

Kremmel, B., & Isbell, D. (2020). Test review: Current options in at-home language proficiency tests for making high stakes decisions. Language Testing, 37(4), 600–619.

Kremmel, B., & Harding, L. (2020). Towards a comprehensive,empirical model of language assessment literacy across stakeholder groups: Developing the language assessment literacy Survey. Language Assessment Quarterly, 17(1), 100–120.

Li, C. & Lalani, F. (2020). The COVID-19 pandemic has changed education forever. This is how. WeForum

Luppicini, R. (2007). Review of Computer Mediated Communication Research for Education. Instructional Science: An International Journal of the Learning Sciences, 35(2), 141-185.

Montelongo, R., & Eaton, P. W. (2019). Strategies and reflections on teaching diversity in digital space(s). In L. Kyei-Blankson, J. Blankson, & E. Ntuli (Eds.), Care and culturally responsive pedagogy in online settings (41-62). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

Ockey, G.J., & Baghestani, S.V.S. (2020). Establishing Appropriate Cut Scores of a Standardized Test for a Local Placement Context.
TESOL Quarterly, 55(3), 719-742.

Plough, I., & Raquel, M. (Eds.). (2020). ILTA Newsletter, 4(1).

Mompean, A. (2010). The development of meaningful interactions on a blog used for the learning of English as a Foreign Language.
ReCALL, 22(3), 376–395.

Ros, I., Sole, C., Calic, J., & Neijmann, D. (2010). A social and self-reflective approach to MALL. ReCALL, 22(1), 39–52.

Shadish W, Cook T, & Campbell, D. (2002). Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Designs For Generilized Causal Inference. Boston, Mass, USA: Houghton-Mifflin Company.

Sharma, V. (2018). Influence Factors in Students’ Motivation for Communicative Competence: A Case Study in KSA. JLLT (50), 37-47.

Sharma, V. (2019). Saudi Students’ Perspective on Social Media Usage to Promote EFL Learning. International Journal of Linguistics, Literature and Translation, 2 (1), 129-139.

Todd, W. R. (2020). Teachers’ perceptions of the shift from the classroom to online teaching. International Journal of
TESOL Studies
, 2(2), 4–16.

Turnbull, D., Chugh, R., & Luck, J. (2021). Transitioning to e-Learning during the COVID-19 pandemic: How have higher education institutions responded to the challenge? Education and Information Technologies, 1-19.

Wagner E., & Krylova A.  (2021). Temple University’s ITA placement test in times of COVID-19. Language Assessment Quarterly,
(1), 12–16.

Xu, Q., & Liu, J. (2018). A study on the washback effects of the test for English majors (TEM): Implications for testing and teaching reforms. Springer Singapore.

Received: 01/31/2022  
Accepted: 06/27/2022
Published: 07/25/2022 

Vipin K Sharma  is a  faculty  English  Language  Institute,  Jazan University, Saudi Arabia. He has contributed  more  than sixty  articles to the journals of repute. He has authored two books and edited six books. ORCHID:

Wael  A.  Holbahhas is working as an assistant professor at  English  Language  Institute,  Jazan  University,  Saudi  Arabia. He has written many articles in national and international journals of repute. ORCHID: