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ix¥¥ Preface THIS VOLUME PROVIDES LANGUAGE educators with strategies and techniques for evaluating language education programs. It issues out of support and training initiatives offered by the Assessment and Evaluation Language Resource Center (AELRC), a Title VI–funded research and training entity dedicated to facilitating useful assessment and evaluation practices that help foreign language (FL) educators innovate and improve their programs, ensure accountability to students and society, and articulate and express the value of FL studiesintheworldtoday.1 Morespecifically,thisbookoriginatedinanAERLC-sponsored workshop at the 2016 Georgetown University Round Table (GURT) on Languages and Linguistics, entitled Useful Evaluation in Language Programs. The workshop was also the product of an ongoing AELRC research agenda investigating how evaluation and assessment can be best implemented in language programs as mechanisms for improving language teaching and learning. The AELRC workshop, then, aimed to train educators in a specific approach to evaluation that focuses on concretely using evaluation for inquiry, evidence-based practice, and organizational learning. We carry on this conceptualization here, advancing the notion that evaluation can be a powerful driver of positive change with the potential to do considerable good in language education programs. A number of individuals and entities have made this book possible. First, I would like to express my appreciation and gratitude to my coauthor and coeditor, Todd McKay, for his essential contributions. Todd has a long history with the AELRC and deep involvement in various program evaluation and assessment initiatives at Georgetown and beyond. His considerable knowledge and research expertise were an invaluable resource, as was his tireless labor and good humor. It was truly a pleasure to work with him. I also want to sincerely thank the contributors, Lara Bryfonski, Amy Kim, Jorge Méndez Seijas, Francesca Venezia, Cristi Vallejos, and Janire Zalbidea, graduate students at Georgetown University and alumni of the Department of Linguistics course on language program evaluation. Each has gone on to develop evaluation skills and research specializations in interesting and novel directions, and the book has benefited greatly from their expertise, hard work, and high-quality contributions. My thanks also to AELRC director Margaret Malone, as always, for supporting and encouraging the project from its inception at GURT 2016 through to the realization of this work. Finally, we are especially indebted to Hope LeGro at Georgetown University Press for her initial interest in the GURT workshop for publication and Glenn Saltzman for her support and assistance throughout the publishing process. x Preface The individuals involved in the creation of this work have aimed to provide language educators with a helpful resource for using evaluation to better understand and improve language education. It is my sincere hope that readers will be empowered by this guide to do useful evaluation that does good for themselves, their students, their colleagues, and their communities. —John McE. Davis Centreville, Virginia Note 1. AELRC is sponsored by a grant from the US Department of Education (P229A140012). ...


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