With the holiday season approaching, it’s good to add some fun into teaching to keep your students engaged and motivated. We’ve created 12 simple classroom activities and tips that you can carry out with your primary class to encourage them to be good.
Versant English language test: Assessment tools for business
You may have heard about Versant, an English test you can take remotely. You may have also heard that companies often use it for interviewing job candidates.
But what does the Versant test assess? And is it the right English proficiency test for you - or your company?
In today's language learning blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Versant. You’ll find out who it’s for, which language skills it tests, and why companies use it to assess candidates.
What is Versant?
Versant allows companies to quickly and efficiently evaluate the English language proficiency of their current or future employees. It helps HR managers assess candidates' language skills; as a result, companies can use Versant for recruitment, training, or promotion purposes.
Versant tests use artificial intelligence, machine learning, and auto-marketing technologies to streamline testing. This way, they can score assessments automatically, quickly, reliably, and securely.
Who is the Versant test for?
Imagine that HR Manager Maria has to hire a dozen new customer service representatives for her company. She only has a month to do it and is already overwhelmed with her other HR duties. And now, she has to screen tens - and potentially hundreds - of candidates. Above all, she needs to find people with a good enough English level to excel in a demanding customer service position.
Test takers can complete Versant English tests online or offline, anytime, from anywhere. So if Maria chooses to use Versant tests to assess her candidates, she can run and deliver hundreds of standardized tests and get instant results.
Moreover, the administration of the test is very intuitive, so it won’t take up too much of her time. And the easy-to-understand detailed score reports that Versant provides will make her hiring decisions all the easier.
Similarly, a job seeker will be delighted to take an online English test from the comfort of their own home. Since Versant test delivery is flexible, they can choose a time that suits them. All they need is a reliable internet connection and a headset with a built-in microphone.
The Versant test will provide solid proof of the candidate's English level by evaluating language skills accurately and reliably. So they can demonstrate to the company just how well-equipped they are to do the job they're applying for.
How is Versant structured and which skills does it test?
Different companies have different assessment needs. Some need their employees’ language skills to be well-rounded. Others focus on speaking skills. Others put a stronger emphasis on writing. Therefore, the Versant suite has four types of English proficiency tests to cater to all these needs:
1. The Versant Professional English Test
The Versant Professional English Test is the most thorough of the 4 test types. It takes 60 minutes to complete and assesses all four skills: speaking, listening, reading, and writing. It has 10 different task types covering a broad range of language abilities. The Versant Professional English Test is a comprehensive test. So, it’s the best choice for companies that need their employees to have mastered all aspects of the English language.
2. The Versant English Test
The Versant English Test is a shorter, 17-minute English proficiency test focusing on evaluating speaking skills. It assesses the candidate’s ability to communicate effectively in English with tasks that target fluency, pronunciation, vocabulary, and sentence mastery. Thanks to this, it’s best for companies whose employees use spoken English primarily. For example, call centers, hotels, or delivery drivers.
3. The Versant Writing Test
The Versant Writing Test takes up to 35 minutes to complete. It allows companies to gauge the writing abilities of candidates. It tests skills such as grammar, vocabulary, organization, voice & tone, and reading comprehension.
This English test for interviews is ideal for companies whose employees primarily use English in writing. For example, they use English for taking notes, responding to emails and chats, or writing product descriptions.
4. The Versant 4 Skills Essential
The Versant 4 Skills Essential is a test for companies looking to hire employees who are proficient in all four English language skills. Companies usually use it for filling entry-level positions. The test has a shorter time frame of 30 minutes and can be delivered flexibly online. Therefore, it’s ideal for fulfilling urgent recruitment needs.
What are the key benefits and features of Versant tests for administrators?
Versant tests are straightforward to administer. They seamlessly blend into an HR manager’s routine. Here are some of the key benefits of Versant English proficiency tests for administrators:
1. Automated scoring
Versant has been perfecting its AI-based assessment technology for over 25 years. Because of the incredible amount of research that has gone into creating a reliable scoring system, Versant is able to automatically mark tests without the need for a human scorer. This provides a wide range of benefits for companies.
Firstly, they can save time and money when testing job candidates. Secondly, unlike human scorers, Versant is free of bias and scores every candidate in a completely objective and consistent way. And thirdly, it prevents cheating by automatically alerting administrators of any suspicious test-taker behavior.
2. Score reports
Another huge benefit is that Versant presents instant results in easy-to-read score reports. These contain detailed information about the candidate’s language abilities. And they highlight skills that companies deem important so administrators can evaluate them at a glance.
Versant score reports assign a CEFR or equivalent Global Scale of English score to the candidate. Consequently, the candidate’s results become comparable to international standards. And the score reports contain suggestions for improvement, so candidates like Fred can practice the tasks that they’re not yet proficient at.
3. ScoreKeeper test administration tool
Last but not least, Versant tests come with the handy ScoreKeeper administration tool. It lets administrators deploy tests and review score reports in an easy-to-use platform. ScoreKeeper was designed with HR professionals in mind. As a result, managing tests, uploading rosters, and exporting results with the tool is a breeze.
Why do HR managers choose Versant tests?
From the above points, it’s easy to see why an HR Manager would choose Versant.
Versant automated language tests are an essential tool for scaling up your recruitment and candidate testing efforts. Most importantly, they allow HR Managers to save time and resources. And they let them focus on what they do best instead of trying to screen hundreds of candidates for English skills.
Versant doesn’t just significantly speed up the hiring process and cut down on costs. Above all, it lets HR departments manage secure, reliable, and bias-free standardized tests in bulk.
If you think that your organization could benefit from a quick, easy and reliable automated English proficiency test, find out more about Versant.
More blogs from Pearson
In the fast-paced world of business, there is one undeniable fact that holds true: employees are the key to success. Their commitment and expertise propel organizations towards their objectives, which is why investing in a learning culture is essential. The advantages are numerous and include improved staff retention, increased productivity and the goal of higher employee engagement.
You may have heard the term learning management system (LMS) at work or perhaps during your time in education. For many, this throws out images of clunky, outdated systems that clumsily distribute course materials and are tough to use. But that is no longer the case. Modern LMS's are far more user-friendly, and it's time to relearn what you thought you knew about these tools.
In this ultimate guide, we will look at everything you need to know about learning management systems and why they are so beneficial.
What is a learning management system?
The idea is that these LMS platforms offer one central place for users to manage and access courses and learning materials. Depending on the user, this could be anything from self-paced e-courses to classroom training.
This can help facilitate a range of training, studying and skills development, as well as assessments, exams and certification management.
Who uses LMS's and why?
There are many great uses for learning management systems but these are used primarily by businesses and educational establishments. Here are some of the most common use cases for these platforms:
HR and management - The HR and management team might implement these across the business to help with learning and development and make sure that organizational goals are being hit
Employee onboarding - Those starting a new job may be given training via an LMS; this can make the onboarding process much quicker and simpler
Compliance training - Lots of roles require compliance training, for example health and safety training, and this is a great way for businesses to stay up to date and ensure everyone complies with regulations
Customer support - Some businesses use learning management systems to onboard customers or clients. This might include sharing user manuals and product guides. Plus, sales professionals might also use them to train new partners or clients in using their services or platforms.
Classroom learning - Lecturers and teachers can create and share course materials and align content and tests from one place. These can also be used to put a twist on traditional classroom learning.
Blended learning - Schools, colleges and universities may use these for online lessons and blended learning, particularly for remote students
Volunteer training - Charities and non-profits may also use an LMS to educate volunteers and keep them motivated about the cause
Of course, these platforms can and will be used in other ways, but these are some of the most common and beneficial uses for LMS's.
Who has access to LMS's?
In most cases, learning management systems will have two primary user groups: administrators and learners.
Administrators are the people who create, manage and deliver e-learning. They may use these platforms to upload their own learning materials, or they may select courses and materials from an existing list given by the provider.
On the other hand, learners are the professionals or students who will use these platforms to train, study and gain new skills. Many modern LMS's allow multiple learners to train or access materials at the same time.
However, there is a third and final group that we have yet to mention: the parents of students using LMS's, particularly outside of school hours. In some cases, parents may have access to these systems to support students, track their progress or look at feedback from the teacher.
Key features in modern LMS's
There are a variety of learning management systems out there and some are more advanced than others. That being said, many modern platforms will share similar features to ensure they stay competitive. Some of these key features may include:
Authoring tools that allow administrators to upload or build their own courses
Access to subject matter experts who can contribute to learning and development activities
Automated workflows that allow for the creation of personalized learning journeys
A resources library that holds all relevant learning materials, such as guides, video clips and courses
Quizzes and surveys for a more fun and engaging way to assess learners
Compliance features, such as automatic reminders that notify learners when it is time to retrain
Certificates and diplomas that give learners recognition as they study and meet their targets
Insights and analysis for individual progress and results, allowing administrators to identify gaps or areas where support is needed
Compatibility with mobile devices for studying on the go
Integrations with other internal systems and software
This is by no means a complete list and different platforms will have different functionality. However, these are some of the most common and beneficial features of many modern LMSs.
The benefits of using learning management systems
Saving time and money
First and foremost, an LMS can be an excellent way for businesses to save time and money on training.
Of course there is an initial investment in the platform, but training can be expensive and time-consuming, particularly if it must take place in a location outside of the workplace. Therefore, this can be the more cost-effective solution. Not to mention, the materials are quick to access and can save time and effort.
Ensuring compliance training is completed
These platforms are an excellent way to ensure that all mandatory training is completed on time and to the highest standard. For example, industry-specific training such as fire safety or cybersecurity training.
Provide accurate data
Administrators can access data and insights into their employee's learning. This can be a great way to see where more support is needed and to identify any skills gaps that need to be filled. Similarly, teachers can get to grips with how well their students are doing and if they need extra help in any subjects or areas.
Improves the learning experience
Whether in school or the workplace, LMS's can be a great way to improve the learning process. It allows users to study and access learning materials from one accessible location. Plus, through a multimedia approach, they can use guides, videos and more to help them learn. This can ensure they engage with the materials and stay motivated.
Finally, an LMS can make communication between students, teachers, employees and employers far simpler. For example, automated reminders keep everyone in the loop and ensure all training is completed on time. But more than that, there is one central place to communicate, review feedback and access the same materials.