SAALA 2012: ICELDA director delivers keynote, receives festschrift

johann van der waltJohann van der Walt, professor and current head of the Centre for Academic and Professional Language Practice of North-West University (Potchefstroom) not only delivered a keynote at the recently held joint annual conference of the Southern African Applied Linguistics Association (SAALA), the Linguistics Society of South Africa (LSSA) and the South African Association for Language Teaching (SAALT) in Bloemfontein, but was also honoured in another way. A festschrift celebrating his work as an academic was handed to him by the chairperson of SAALT, Professor Susan Coetzee-Van Rooy, at the gala dinner of the conference. The celebratory publication contains the work of many of his former students and current associates. Prof. van der Walt is a director of ICELDA. His keynote address, “The meaning and uses of test scores: Towards the systematic evaluation of language tests” is described by Albert Weideman, ICELDA CEO, as “a highly insightful historical overview of validity theory in particular, and test theory in general”, and moreover constitutes a further refinement of Van der Walt’s own thinking about responsible language test design. “It takes us forward in language test design, and its insights are useful for our test development and refinement.”

Originally posted on 8 July 2012.