1887

n Acta Academica - Validating a test of academic literacy at a South African university of technology

Volume 45, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0587-2405

Abstract

The advent of a democratic dispensation in South Africa in 1994 officially made it possible for historically disadvantaged groups, Black students in particular, to gain access to higher education at historically White universities. These universities, however, use English for teaching and learning, a second language to the majority of these students. Moreover, such students are products of Bantu Education, a tool used by the apartheid government to ensure that they leave secondary school with poor English skills. Both these factors constitute an obstacle to the students' capacity to handle the demands of university education in English. South African universities have responded to this challenge by introducing academic language programmes to help the students bridge the language gap between high school and university education. Most of these programmes mainly focus on the teaching of reading, writing and thinking in English, a combination of skills known as academic literacy in the South African higher education context. This study explores the validity of a test of academic literacy used for summative assessment at a university of technology. Evidence suggests that the test possessed an acceptable degree of validity.


Die totstandkoming van 'n demokratiese bestel in Suid-Afrika in 1994 het dit amptelik moontlik gemaak vir historiesbenadeelde groepe, Swart studente in die besonder, om toegang te verkry tot hoër onderwys by histories Wit universiteite. Hierdie universiteite gebruik Engels vir onderrig en leer, 'n tweede taal vir die meerderheid van die betrokke studente. Boonop is hierdie studente produkte van Bantu Onderwys, 'n middel wat aangewend is deur die Apartheidsregering om te verseker dat hulle hoërskool verlaat met gebrekkige Engelse vaardighede. Genoemde faktore behels 'n struikelblok in die studente se vermoë om te voldoen aan die eise van Universiteitsopleiding in Engels. Suid-Afrikaanse universiteite het gereageer op hierdie uitdaging deur akademiese taalprogramme in te stel om die studente te help om die taalgaping tussen hoërskool- en universiteitsonderrig te oorbrug. Hierdie programme fokus hoofsaaklik op die onderrig van lees, skryf en dink in Engels, 'n kombinasie van vaardighede wat bekend staan as akademiese geletterdheid in die Suid-Afrikaanse hoër onderwys konteks. Hierdie studie verken die geldigheid van 'n toets vir akademiese geletterdheid wat gebruik word vir summatiewe assessering by 'n universiteit van tegnologie. Die resultate dui daarop dat die toets oor 'n aanvaarbare vlak van geldigheid beskik.

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/content/academ/45/3/EJC144227
2013-01-01
2019-10-17

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