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TOEFL Test of Written English (TWE)

Test Name: TOEFL Test of Written English (TWE)
Publisher: Pro-Ed
Publication Date: 1988
Test Type: Language Proficiency
Content: Reading/Writing in L2
Language: English
Target Population: English Language Learner (ELL)
Grade Level: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12
Administration Time: Untimed/Guidelines
Standardized: Yes
Purpose: Diagnosis; Identification; Progress; Other

Test of Written English (TWE) is a subtest of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) which was developed to measure the ability of EFL/ESL students to produce an organized essay or report. The holistic score from the TWE is added to the scores from the other parts of the TOEFL, with the total score being used primarily to evaluate the English proficiency of non-native speakers who wish to study in colleges or universities in English-speaking countries. Scoring is done by college and university faculty members who are experienced in writing assessment, pedagogy, and testing, and who make up the TWE Core Reader Group for the Educational Testing Service. Consistency in scoring is maintained through the use of a criterion-referenced scoring guide and extensive rater training. Test specifications for the TWE identify the effective writer as one who understands and addresses all parts of the essay question, is organized, uses details, maintains coherence, clarity, and fluency, and exhibits lexical and syntactic variety. Essay questions are pretested on 200-300 writers who resemble the usual population of TWE test takers. Scores range from 1 (incompetency in writing) to 6 (competency in writing) with some scores falling between two points on the scale (Ex: 2.5). TWE scores can be reported for two years before an examinee must be retested. The TOEFL is administered by the Educational Testing Service four times a year and is not available for use by other organizations or individuals. The TWE should be used to evaluate an applicant's readiness to begin academic work, and individual institutions are encouraged to conduct their own validity studies to determine which scores on the TWE correspond to success in certain programs. The TWE should NOT be used, however, to predict academic performance. Inter-rater reliability for the TWE is in the high .70s and correlation between the TWE and other parts of the TOEFL range from .67 to .72. Average scores listed by language and by country are available in the TWE Guide, but the test is criterion-referenced rather than norm-referenced. The TWE Guide also contains sample essay questions, scoring guide, and actual scored essays for reference.

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