Call for Applications: Reading Proficiency Assessment Workshop at NIU (Deadline Extended!)

SEALC Reading Proficiency Assessment Workshop
Northern Illinois University

Extended Application Deadline: October 11, 2021

Workshop Dates: March 3-6, 2022

The Southeast Asian Language Council (SEALC) invites applications from Southeast Asian language instructors for a Reading Proficiency Assessment workshop, in collaboration with and hosted at Northern Illinois University from March 3-6, 2022. This professional development opportunity will provide a valuable opportunity for participants to collaborate with colleagues across the United States, to develop reading proficiency assessment materials for the field of Southeast Asian languages. Lodging, meals, and workshop fees are covered for all participants.

Proposed Activities
March 3-6, 2022 Workshop (in person at NIU): Participants will receive intensive training on assessing reading proficiency from Drs. Catherine Baumann and Ahmet Dursun, language assessment experts from the University of Chicago.

Catherine Baumann is director of the University of Chicago Language Center. She received her Ph.D. in Second Languages and Cultures Education at the University of Minnesota, specializing in reading comprehension and language testing. She is a certified ACTFL tester and trainer, and does consulting for high school and college language programs on a variety of curricular and assessment-related issues. She oversees all programs in the University of Chicago Language Center.

Ahmet Dursun is the Director of the Office of Language Assessment, where he is responsible for researching, developing, and managing the University’s language assessment programs. He is co-founder of the Language Pedagogy Innovation Initiative (LPII) at the University of Chicago where he has been designing and leading workshops in second language assessment and pedagogy. His work focusing on computer-assisted language teaching, testing research and practice, and test validation have appeared in multiple peer-reviewed journals, edited volumes, and books. He speaks Kurdish, Turkish, and Arabic. Ahmet was also the invited workshop trainer at the COTSEAL 37th Virtual Conference, with a session entitled “The Role of Proficiency-oriented, Performance-based Reading Assessments in Second Language Reading Instruction.”

March – May 2022: Language-specific working groups of three or more instructors will complete the tools/tests for assessing reading proficiency at three levels with support from SEALC.

Follow-up workshop (in person at NIU): There will be a three-day follow-up workshop in June of 2022 (UPDATED) at which participants will report on their group’s achievements and receive feedback from the trainers. Once finalized, deliverables will be kept on file by SEALC and made accessible to all instructors of that language

Eligibility and Application Process
Applicants must be Southeast Asian language instructors and active members of The Council of Teachers of Southeast Asian Languages (COTSEAL). To learn more about COTSEAL and to apply for membership, click here. Additionally, applicants must have attended an ACTFL OPI workshop or plan to attend an ACTFL OPI workshop prior to the reading proficiency assessment workshop. Contact SEALC if you require assistance finding an ACTFL OPI workshop to attend.

To apply for this opportunity, please email the following materials to Lisey Doty, SEALC’s Project Manager, at by end of day October 11, 2021:

A current CV, and a statement of interest addressing the following:

    1. Your career path up to this point and your position teaching a SEA language as a foreign language, including what levels of the language you teach
    2. Your commitment to collaborate and develop pedagogical materials following the workshop
    3. How this SEALC opportunity will benefit your professional development as a SEA language instructor
    4. Written confirmation that you have attended an ACTFL OPI workshop, including the dates of the workshop attended (or a written agreement that you will attend an ACTFL OPI workshop before this workshop starts)

The selection committee will notify applicants within one month of the application deadline. Should you have any questions about this opportunity, please email