Multilingual assessment: Conceptualizations and pathways

In many contexts of the Global South, the practice of multilingual assessment exemplifies the dynamic assessment that takes place in the course of multilingual teaching. Multilingual assessment, therefore, has a tradition that is consistent with the long history of multilingual teaching and learning in these contexts. In what is obviously an incipient language ideological shift, multilingual assessment has recently begun to gain traction in contexts of the Global North. As the scholarship of multilingual assessment develops internationally, some ground-clearing is required to, among others, unearth conceptual differences that may lurk beneath the use of common phraseology (such as the multilingual turn in assessment, multilingual assessment or plurilingual assessment) and to outline possible directions. Across the Global South and the Global North seen as epistemic units, this presentation discusses and exemplifies conceptualizations of multilingual assessment in the interrelated areas of (1) the underlying ideologies of language; (2) prioritized notions and domains of assessment; and (3) key rationales. Against this backdrop, the presentation suggests that international scholarship and collaboration on multilingual assessment may be fostered by a critical perspective on how language interfaces with assessment, specifically by how issues of power asymmetry and interests highlight stances to pedagogical principles of assessment, and what the implications might be for a response framework in the form of multilingual assessment literacies.