Iranian EFL Teachers' Classroom Assessment Practices: Discrepancy between Theoretical and Practical Aspects of Classroom Assessment Practices

Document Type : Original Research Article


1 English Department, Ilam University

2 Ilam University


Classroom assessment practices play an important role in increasing students' learning. These practices are also key to the success of curriculum reforms. In line with this importance, the current study aimed to explore Iranian EFL teachers' classroom assessment practices following the new curriculum reform introduced in 2011. It also examined whether there were differences in teachers' practices based on variables such as gender, teaching experience, and educational degree through qualitative and quantitative approaches. A total of 28 EFL teachers at public high schools from three provinces in Iran (Lorestan, Kermanshah, and Ilam) participated in the semi-structured interviews. After transcribing the interviews, recurrent themes were identified by thematic analysis. The results revealed that English teachers used primarily assessment for learning or formative assessment, yet their assessments were still exam-based. The frequency of assessment practices indicated that oral questioning during instruction (60.7%), test after each lesson or unit of lesson (50%), written exams (35.7%), and group activity (32.1%) were the most frequently used assessment practices among teachers. The findings revealed that there is a discrepancy between teachers' classroom assessment practices and the curriculum reform. Across gender, there was a significant difference between participants in terms of role play, assigning summaries of lessons, and playing audio files. Regarding teaching experience and academic degree, there was no significant difference between participants. The findings would have implications for teacher education programs and EFL teachers.
Key Words: Classroom assessment; EFL teachers; Formative assessment; Practices