Wednesday, November 25, 2015

EdD Reading: Applying for Citizenship in Scotland.

Getting an overview of the assessment regime [interesting word] for emergent bilingual new Scots. [for notes only, EBs or EBNSs] [text below not proofed]

First, (Esolscotland.com, Citizenship. 2015). On a page headed “ESOL and Citizenship - Home Office requirements for settlement and naturalisation as a British citizen from 6th April 2015” [nb, the words “settlement” and, particularly “naturalisation” are interesting here. Check legal defiinitions and etymology], we learn that there are two parts to the KoLL test, (Knowledge of Language and Life in the UK): the applicant must pass the Life in the UK test, AND have a level of English, [OR, presumably, Welsh or Scots Gaelic, though they aren’t mentioned here?] at CEFR B1. Tests, (both?) are referred to as SELTs (Secure English Language Tests) and are conducted by Trinity and IELTS SELTS Consortia. From November 2015, (now) only SELTs will be acceptable for settlement and naturalisation. 

There’s a long and technical list of acceptable tests transitionally, (complicated for me, so how must it look to an EB?). But the situation for Scotland is unclear: “The Scottish Government and SQA are seeking urgent clarification from the Home Office as to the details of this change and will issue further updates as soon as possible.” [This is interesting regarding issues surrounding the contradictions and tensions of devolution with regard to language policies]. But the bigger picture is clear, if you want to settle permanently in Scotland/the UK you need to be a B1 and pass the Life in the UK test. 

The SELTs hyperlink takes one to (Gov.uk. Applying for a UK visa: approved English language tests. 2013). This is headed “Guidance: Applying for a UK visa: approved English language tests”, and has a link to a PDF document (gov.uk. Approved Secure English Language Tests and Test Centres, 2015) which is a list of test centres throughout the UK (administered by Trinity or IELTS) and the world (administered by IELTS only).  

There is a test centre in Glasgow, (The Centrum Building, 38 Queen Street, Glasgow G1 3DX), and advice to “[p]lease refer to the SELT providers website for test availability.”  But it is not clear from this PDF how an EB who wants to (for example) to take the KoLL test(s) would go about that. 

My browser (Safari) was able to follow a URL in a PDF document, so it was a simple matter to to to the address given on  (gov.uk. Approved Secure English Language Tests and Test Centres, 2015) [NB check out APA system for website citations - Cite This For Me is giving references which don’t look right, and are inconsistent. The Pages app on my macbook seems to dislike them, too, and is auto-correcting despite being told, by me, to stop it.]  

This takes us to trinitycollege.com, Secure English Language Tests for UK visas (2015). This is clearer than the government sites, and tells us which exam one needs to take for the various visas. For citizenship, for example, it is GESE Grade 5 [any research on validity???]. I tried, and succeeded in a few seconds to get to a position to book an exam in Glasgow in December this year. A clear link takes one to  trinitycollege.com, Prepare for your GESE Grade 5 exam (2015), which has videos and other material to help EBs prepare for the ten minute speaking and listening test. 

However, one learns that Trinity does not administer the Life in the UK test, and we are directed to  gov.uk, Life in the UK Test (2015) which enables one to book a test, and gives a link to tsoshop.co.uk, Life in the United Kingdom where one can buy Life in the United Kingdom (2013) for £12.99. 

The test is critiqued by Brooks 2013, need to read. 

NB Can't find Life in the United Kingdom book in library. Need to speak to someone there - (tomorrow AM). 


REFERENCES

Brooks, T. The 'Life in the United Kingdom' Citizenship Test: Is it Unfit for Purpose?. SSRN Electronic Journal. http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2280329

esolscotland.com, Citizenship. (2015). ESOL Scotland - English for Speakers of Other Languages. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from http://www.esolscotland.com/citizenship.cfm

Gov.uk,. (2013). Applying for a UK visa: approved English language tests - Publications - GOV.UK. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-applying-for-uk-visa-approved-english-language-tests

Gov.uk,. (2013). Applying for a UK visa: approved English language tests - Publications - GOV.UK. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from  https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/477984/2015-11-18__Approved_Secure_English_Language_Tests_and_Test_Centres_-_Website.pdf

Gov.uk,. (2015). Life in the UK Test - GOV.UK. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from https://www.gov.uk/life-in-the-uk-test

Life in the United Kingdom: A guide for new residents (3rd ed.). (2013). Norwich: TSO.

Trinitycollege.com,. (2015). Trinity College London - Secure English Language Tests for UK visas. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3218&utm_source=jump&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=selt

Trinitycollege.com,. (2015). Trinity College London - Prepare for your GESE Grade 5 exam. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3365


Tsoshop.co.uk,. (2015). Life in the United Kingdom: A Guide for New Residents, 3rd Edition : Book version. Retrieved 25 November 2015, from http://www.tsoshop.co.uk/bookstore.asp?FO=1240167&ProductID=9780113413409&Action=Book&TRACKID=002353