SBA in the 2012 HKDSE English Examination

Following the successful introduction of school-based assessment (SBA) into the Hong Kong Certificate of Education English Examination from 2005 onwards, SBA will also be incorporated into the new Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE). Like the HKCEE SBA, SBA in the HKDSE aims to ensure assessment is closely aligned with the English Language Curriculum and Assessment Guide (Secondary 4-6) jointly prepared by the Curriculum Development Council and the Hong Kong Examination and Assessment Authority and supports the Education Bureau’s official policy of assessment for learning.

The SBA component is an assessment of English oral language proficiency based on topics and texts drawn from a wide range of sources, including print, video / film, fiction and non-fiction material, such as newspapers and web-based material. The SBA is assessed through activities linked to a reading and viewing program (Part A) integrated with the general English language curriculum, and through an elective program (Part B) in one or more of the following areas:

Language Arts
Non-Language Arts
Sports Communication
Short Stories
Poems & Songs
Social Issues
Popular Culture
Workplace Communication

The SBA is designed to assess learners’ achievement in areas that cannot be easily assessed in public examinations, whilst also enhancing the capacity for student self-evaluation and life-long learning. As such, it complements the assessment of other aspects of English language being assessed through external examinations, in particular the external oral examination, Paper 4: Speaking.

The SBA is aligned with the HKEAA’s outcomes-based, standards-referenced assessment system which seeks to recognise and report on the full range of educational achievement in Hong Kong schools. The principles of outcomes-based education are that assessment should:

  • promote learning;
  • move away from learning as memorisation;
  • cover a wide spectrum of learning activities and tasks;
  • make use of relevant knowledge in realistic contexts;
  • take place recurrently rather than in end-of-course tests;
  • focus on knowledge, skills, attitudes and values and not only on content; and
  • in the case of language, focus on the key building blocks of developing language proficiency and not only on accuracy.

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