Battling Against a Traditional Assessment Culture: The Case of Early English Learning in Portugal

Sandie Mourão, Carolyn Leslie, Maria Alfredo Moreira, Estela Monteiro

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter addresses the particular case of Portugal and its culture of assessment in early foreign language (FL) education and the implications this has for teachers working with younger children. After briefly addressing the principles and procedures for assessment in early FL learning, we provide information about the Portuguese education system, its English education in the 21st century, teacher education and teacher placement. These details are described thoroughly as they are relevant for the reader to understand the constraints set out in the rest of the chapter. We continue with a description of a study, still underway, its methodology and data collection tools. The discussion around selected results centres on the issues perceived as problematic related to traditional assessment practices which focus on assessing literacy skills rather than oral skills. Our conclusion suggests that the specificities of the Portuguese education system and its reliance on specialist teachers of English brought from other levels of education, make this issue particularly difficult to overcome. The recommendations regarding adequate teacher education are relevant for other countries with similar practices.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCurrent Research into Young FL and EAL Learners‘ Literacy Skills
EditorsStefanie Frisch, Jutta Rymarczyk
Place of PublicationBerlin
PublisherPeter Lang Publishing Group
Number of pages23
ISBN (Print)978-3-631-81711-7
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2021


Dive into the research topics of 'Battling Against a Traditional Assessment Culture: The Case of Early English Learning in Portugal'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this