Spanish Tester I

Location: Arlington, VA
Date Posted: 04-06-2018
Company Profile: WLC is Small-Veteran Owned Business (SVOB) that provides U.S. Government, military, and multi-national corporations with high quality language and cultural training, testing, translation and interpreting services. WLC operates over 80 global and minority languages. WLC instructors, testers and cultural presenters are native speakers who are highly trained in communicative teaching methods, multi-lingual, and multi-culturally competent. We match client training needs with our personnel's expertise so that complex subject matter can be covered with confidence.
Job Title: Language Tester I (LT1)
Description:  The Language Tester will work onsite at the School of Language Studies (SLS) at the US Department of State’s (DOS) Foreign Service Institute (FSI) in Arlington, VA.  FSI provides foreign language training, testing and other language support services to DOS employees and other government agencies in over 70 foreign languages.  Enrollments in the school surpass 2000 students annually including up to 1000 distance learning enrollments. 

SLS consists of approximately 450 technical and professional personnel with expertise in the field of foreign language teaching, culture, and applied linguistics. Successful candidates for the posted position may join existing teaching, testing, or program management staff composed of government employees and contractors. The settings within which the work is conducted include large- and small-group classrooms, most of which are equipped with interactive SmartPanels or Smart Boards; facilities for video and audio recording; multimedia and innovation labs; distance learning mentoring rooms; testing rooms; standard offices; and an information center.
Language testers administer Oral and Reading Proficiency Interviews in order to evaluate the language proficiency of students according to the Interagency Language Roundtable (ILR) scale.  The ILR scale assesses spoken language proficiency from levels 0-5. The information provided by these assessments assists government agencies in supporting language issues in the workplace and helps to assure that US government personnel worldwide have the language skills necessary to perform their jobs.  The OPI takes the form of a carefully structured conversation between a trained and certified tester and the person whose speaking proficiency is being assessed. The interview is interactive and continuously adapts to the speaking abilities of the individual being tested. The topics that are discussed during the interview are based on the interests and experiences of the test candidate. Through a series of personalized questions, the interviewer elicits from the test candidate examples of his or her ability to handle the communication tasks specified for each level of proficiency in order to establish a clear 'floor' and 'ceiling' of consistent functional ability.
  • Serve as Tester for language proficiency examinations, interacting with the examinee in the Tester's native language or a language in which the Tester has near-native proficiency. Proficiency tests may be face-to-face or by digital video conference or another technology-based medium (such as telephone, recorded audio, recorded video). The FSI language proficiency test rates the examinee's skills in reading and speaking. The Tester provides information to an Examiner about the examinee's performance on various parts of the test and about the content of the texts used in the test, and assists with the selection and/or preparation of reading test materials.
  • Duties of the Tester are defined by documentation in the LTU (provided post-award). FSI/SLS/LTU provides all training required for attaining FSI Tester certification.  The Tester and Examiner training process takes approximately one year to complete and includes introductory training, approximately 25 hours of review classes and mentoring meetings with a Testing Mentor, a written assessment on testing processes, observations of official exams, conducting mock practice exams, and conducting official exams observed by the Testing Mentor or LTU Head of Training.
  • Must be certified as a Tester by FSI LTU within the first 4 months of start date.
  • After being certified as a Tester, must be certified as an Examiner by FSI LTU within the first year of start date.
  • May participate in the creation and piloting of new reading kits to be used in language proficiency testing.
  • May participate in the production of audio or video materials for use in conjunction with LTU testing training.
  • May conduct test reviews following procedures defined by documentation in the LTU’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
  • May be requested to conduct end of training tests at one of FSI's overseas field schools and/or regional programs.
  • Collaborate with COR, ACOR, GTM and/or others, to lead the reviewing and editing of foreign language and/or English in testing materials.
  • Adhere to all copyright guidelines and restrictions and follow FSI and SLS procedures regarding copyright.
  • Adhere to all guidelines and follow all procedures regarding testing material security and safeguarding test score data.
Required Qualifications:
  1. English proficiency of 3 or higher (ILR scale) in speaking, documented and certified through an approved third-party vendor listed on documentation provided by FSI/SLS/LTU. Contractor companies will be required to provide this verification document from the third-party vendor prior to an in-person screening.
  1. Native language proficiency of 4 or higher (ILR scale) in speaking and reading documented and certified through an approved third-party vendor listed on documentation provided by FSI/SLS/LTU. Contractor companies will be required to provide this verification document from the third-party vendor prior to an in-person screening.
Additional Preferred Qualifications:
  1. Experience conducting proficiency-based tests (e.g., DLAB, ACTFL OPI) in one or more foreign languages tested at FSI.
  2. BA/BS, MA/MS or PhD in language testing, evaluation and measurement, educational assessment, applied linguistics, second language acquisition or related field.
  3. Experience in designing and/or selecting testing materials.
  4. Experience with online delivery systems used to administer proficiency-based exams.
EEO Statement: We are an equal employment opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law. 
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