PREDICTING STUDENTS’ GPAS BASED ON CLOZE TESTS IN KAZAKHSTAN
The purpose of this study was to determine what correlation, if any, existed between the MA TESOL entrance exam, specifically the cloze test, and students’ performance in the program at an English-medium university in Central Asia. This was accomplished by comparing the results of students’ scores on the three parts of the exam (cloze and two essays) with their GPAs. Findings showed the number correct in the second half (with exact-word scoring) of an academic passage had a higher correlation with GPA (0.60; significant at 0.01). Correlations with the essays were not significant. A brief review of the literature of the issues surrounding the cloze procedure relevant to our program are discussed, viz., 1) how well cloze measures ESL reading comprehension, 2) which scoring method correlates with second language proficiency, 3) whether we should score both halves or only the second half of the test, and 4) what the optimum deletion frequency is. The results will be used to further calibrate entrance requirements and exam assessment procedures.