When it comes to measuring students progress in the French language, the AUCP provides students and universities with two kinds of scores: raw point progress and the percentage of achievable progress. The first is rather standard, measuring simple straightforward point progress (i.e., the overall numerical score of the second test minus that of the first). And the second is achievable progress.
Achievable progress is the point-gap that separates students from their goal of fluency.
For example: I got 500 on this test, I want to get 900, so my potential or achievable progress is 400.
The percentage of achievable progress that we measure is the extent to which students close that gap between their entry level and their goal of fluency.
So, if I end up with 600 on my post-test, then I’ve gained 100 out of my 400 potential points. So I’ve attained 20% of my achievable progress.
But why is achievable progress valuable? Why do we use it?
Have you ever been on a diet? Then you know that those last 5 pounds are the hardest to drop. Similarly, we know that the higher your entry score (and thus, the closer you are to your goal), the harder it is to demonstrate progress in terms of raw points – that’s just the reality of perfectionnement. Achievable progress compensates for this inequity, giving credit to the achievement of students at all entry levels, even the highest.
Now you can appreciate that fact that, on average during one semester, AUCP students complete an impressive 34% of their achievable progress!
Let’s look at an example: below we see three different students: one with a pre-semester score of 300/900, the second with a pre-score of 444/900 and the third with a pre-score of 622/900. The achievable progress (the dotted line) is then the number of points remaining for a student to attain a « perfect » score on the TEF, or attain the TEF measure of French fluency.
Looking at each student’s point progress based on each student’s post-semester score, each student progressed differently in terms of raw points. But all three achieved 34% of their achievable progress. Et voilà!
Want to learn more about the AUCP model, TEF scoring and why we use achievable progress as a measurement? Check out our founding director’s publication « Assessing Language Acquisition and Intercultural Sensitivity Development in Relation to Study Abroad Program Design, » as published in Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad. You can download a hi-res PDF version of the above graph illustrating achievable progress, here, or learn more about the TEF in our blog post What’s a TEF, here.