Addressing the Challenges of Online Group Speaking Assessments

Research output: Unpublished conference presentation (presented paper, abstract, poster)Conference presentation (not published in journal/proceeding/book)Teaching and learningpeer-review


This paper considers the challenges and possible solutions of moving a group speaking assessment from face-to-face mode to online mode. The assessment involves higher-diploma level students from a range of departments (Applied Biology, Engineering, and Building and Real Estate) at a tertiary institution in Hong Kong. The students generally have a low level of English and are in their second semester of their first year at university which runs from September to July each year. Due to coronavirus, the modified speaking assessment was moved to an online format and first successfully conducted in early May 2020. Feedback from the English language teachers in the subject was generally positive with the general feeling that students received a more accurate grade as a result of the one-to-one discussion assessment than they had previously received with the group discussion assessment. Grade data appear to confirm this. Student feedback to the modified assessment was mixed with some preferring the original ‘group discussion’ format while others opting for the revised ‘one-to-one discussion’ format. Overall, there were some administrative concerns, and the assessment rubric needs to be further modified. The presentation ends with a discussion of addressing the challenges of conducting speaking assessments in disciplinary subjects.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusNot published / presented only - 20 May 2021
EventInternational Conference on English Across the Curriculum [EAC] -
Duration: 1 Jan 2015 → …


ConferenceInternational Conference on English Across the Curriculum [EAC]
Period1/01/15 → …


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