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French lexis and formal exams in the British foreign language classroom / Jim Milton

Revue Francaise de Linguistique Appliquee, Volume: 20, Issue: 1, Pages: 107 - 120

Swansea University Author: Jim, Milton

Abstract

Over the last 10 years the proportion of students taking French GCSE and A level exams in UK schools and who gain top grades has increased. Does this mean the quality of students and the standard of teaching improved or does this reflect a decline in the standard of the exam, something called grade...

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Published in: Revue Francaise de Linguistique Appliquee
Published: 2015
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa22320
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Abstract: Over the last 10 years the proportion of students taking French GCSE and A level exams in UK schools and who gain top grades has increased. Does this mean the quality of students and the standard of teaching improved or does this reflect a decline in the standard of the exam, something called grade inflation. This study reports data from a UK school where vocabulary size scores for students taking these exams over the 10 year period is available. Vocabulary links very closely with overall foreign language ability and if standards have increased then vocabulary size should also have increased. Results show that vocabulary scores by students have decreased since 2005, although the difference between the 2005 and 2015 scores is not statistically significant. It can be concluded that grade inflation is occurring and the standard of these milestone exams in french has lowered over time.
Keywords: vocabulary size, grade inflation, lexical coverage, lexical threshold
College: College of Arts and Humanities
Issue: 1
Start Page: 107
End Page: 120