New Directions 2019 Programme page


New Directions 2019 Conference Schedule

<Sunday 8th>
9:00-17:40 Panel discussion, Plenary sessions, Breakout sessions, Symposium
18:00: Reception (Yokohama Bay Hotel)
The breakout sessions discuss research and practice in Asian countries divided into the six themes listed above. In the afternoon symposium, we will discuss cases in China, Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia.

<Monday 9th>
9:00-17:20 Panel discussion, Plenary Sessions, Breakout Sessions
Pleaney speaker Professor Satoshi Watanabe presents "Critically analysing the results of the 2019 nationwide English examination" and Professor Barry O'Sullivan, head of the British Council English Assessment Research Group will present "Making a comprehensive learning system work: the case of Japan". There will be discussions of proposals including Japan's entrance examination reformation, and research based on examples and actual situations in Asian countries.

Plenary speakers


Panel Discussion: Language Assessment Policy

Chaired by Professor Barry O’Sullivan (British Council Assessment Research Group)

The policy panel explores the theme of language assessment policy is shaped and implemented, and its impact on education. Keynote speaker and policy expert, Professor Joseph Lo Bianco from the University of Melbourne, is joined on the panel by experts from East Asia to discuss their experiences of and views on language assessment policies in the region. 


Panel Discussion: Technology and Consequences

Chaired by Helen Yannakoudakis (Cambridge Assessment English)

This panel brings together experts from Japan, China, the U.S. and U.K., all experienced in the development and use of technology for language assessment. The panel will consider questions arising from the ever-expanding use of technology and the impact on education of its application to language assessment. 

Symposium: Standards and Frameworks in Language Assessment in East Asia

Discussant: Dr Jamie Dunlea (British Council Assessment Research Group)

The standards and frameworks symposium brings together expert practitioners working around the East Asia region to share their experiences of implementing standards in their contexts. This follows up on the theme of the Malaysia 2018 conference, which focused on the role of standards in education systems. How has the situation in East Asia developed over the past year? This symposium offers insight from some of the key players.

Breakout Session Themes

  • Alignment of Policy with Context – How decisions about language testing meet needs and goals.
  • Stakeholder Engagement – How language tests affect educational practitioners and test takers.
  • Assessment and Inclusion – Making tests fair and accessible for all.
  • Implementing Performance Assessment – The challenges and impact of assessing writing and speaking.
  • Technology and Consequences – The increasingly important and effective role of technology in language assessment.
  • General Strand – Other outstanding research in the field of language assessment.


Workshops – Saturday 7 December at Yokohama National University

  • Eye-tracking colloquium: A talk, paper presentations, and discussion on the use of eye-tracking technology in language assessment research, with invited speaker Vahid Aryadoust (National Institute of Education Singapore). Find more about Eye-tracking colloquium (PDF 204KB).
  • Online Learning: Neenaz Ichaporia (British Council Examinations and English Services, India) shares her knowledge and experience of delivering online training courses to support learners as they prepare for language tests, including practical examples of online tools that teachers can use for formative assessment. Find more about Online learning (PDF 136KB).
  • Statistics: “Measuring the unobservable: Introduction to latent variables and factor analysis using Mplus” with Dr Karen Dunn (British Council Assessment Research Group). Find more about Statistics (PDF 131KB).

See also