Washback Effect of the Iranian Concours on Senior High School Students' EFL Learning Activities

Document Type : Original Research Article


1 English Department, University of Bojnord (UB), Bojnord, Iran.

2 English Department, Tabaran Institute of Higher Education, Mashhad, Iran.


The effect of testing on teaching and learning is commonly referred to as washback. It is mediated by factors which may be different from context to context. This study focused on school type and location assumed to be closely associated with the washback effect of the nationwide Iranian University Entrance Examination (UEE). To study the impact of the UEE on Iranian students at senior high schools, the researcher reviewed the existing instruments for washback studies and developed his own questionnaire which included 20 items on a six-point Likert scale. Five experts reviewed and assessed the instrument to determine its content and face validity. The internal consistency reliability of the questionnaire was .72 based on Cronbach's coefficient alpha. Stratified random sampling was used to select 120 freshmen from Kosar University of Bojnord (KUB). The questionnaire was given to the randomly-selected students. The descriptive statistics suggested that the majority of the surveyed students perceived the harmful effect of the UEE on their learning activities. However, the independent-samples t-test results indicated that there was no significant difference between students' perceptions of the impact of the UEE in view of the school type or location in which they were studying.