One of the purposes of the Japan Language Testing Association (JLTA) is “to improve and develop practices and theories related to measurement and evaluation in foreign language education in Japan”. With entrance examination reform currently attracting attention, it is hoped that knowledge of language measurement and evaluation will be diffused among not only JLTA members but also researchers, educators, and the general public. In order to achieve these objectives, the association is instituting an award for authors (including groups) who have published books on measurement and evaluation in foreign language education, or on research and practice in related fields (education, statistics, policy, etc.), and encouraging efforts to disseminate research outcomes.
Regulations of The Japan Language Testing Association Best Book Award
By recognizing outstanding works by members of the Japan Language Testing Association (JLTA), this award is intended to encourage members to publish books, and to disseminate to the general public research and practices related to measurement and evaluation in foreign language education (areas broadly related to language testing such as test theory, test development, and validation studies). The title will be the Japan Language Testing Association Best Book Award [The JLTA Best Book Award].
- Books eligible for the award
The award will be given to books related to language testing (commercially published or available in libraries, etc.) written by JLTA members (at the time of nomination, selection, and bestowal of the award). The author(s) (editor[s]) shall be an individual or group including at least one member (excluding supporting members). In addition to books focusing on fields related to language testing (e.g., pedagogy, second language acquisition, and psychometrics) and those related to measurement and evaluation, translations and collections of articles are also eligible. In the case of research books, not only books dealing with new theories but also those dealing mainly with the reappraisal of existing research are eligible. Revised or expanded editions will be eligible if none of the previous editions has received the award.
As a general rule, eligible books will have been published within the last three years, although in special cases, books published more than three years ago may also be eligible. In the latter case, the nominator must report the reason in detail to the Best Book Award Selection Committee (hereafter, the Award Selection Committee).
The target language of research and practice in measurement and evaluation does not matter, but the award is limited to books written in Japanese or English.
- Selection procedures
(1) In general, nominations should come from other JLTA members.
(2) JLTA members (with at least 3 years standing) may nominate a book to the Award Selection Committee by March 31 of each year. The Award Selection Committee members (excluding the chair) can also make a nomination. The nominator must not be involved in either the writing or the editing of the nominated book, and nomination is limited to one book per person. Nominations are made by sending a nomination form to the chair of the Award Selection Committee by e-mail. For the nomination form, use the template posted on the JLTA website, and enter the title of the book, the name of the author (editor), and the reason for the nomination, in around 200 characters in Japanese or 100 words in English. When nominating a book published before more than 3 years previously, as specified in (2), the reason should be around 400 characters in Japanese or 200 words in English.
(3) The chair of the Award Selection Committee will notify the secretariat of the list of nominated books. If there are a large number of nominations, the chair of the Award Selection Committee may first select a shortlist by referring to the nomination forms.
(4) The secretariat will purchase the required copies of nominated books and mail them to the Award Selection Committee members.
(5) The Award Selection Committee members will review the nominations, judge whether the books are worthy of the award, and enter their conclusions on the prescribed form. The chair of the Award Selection Committee will summarize the results and decide which book will receive the award.
(6) The Award Selection Committee will report the selection results (candidates for the award) to the Board of Directors. The secretariat will confirm with the award candidate (or their representative) whether they will accept the award. If the award candidate (or their representative) declines, the Award Selection Committee will discuss whether to make no award or to select another candidate. The Board of Directors will receive the recommendation of the Award Selection Committee, deliberate on it, and declare the award winner for the year.
(7) The Award Selection Committee will prepare the award certificate and a commemorative item, and the president will present them to the award winner (or their representative) at the annual conference. The Award Selection Committee will ask other related committees to make the results public through the JLTA website, Newsletter, and other publications.
- Selection criteria
(1) The book deals with the measurement and evaluation of language ability, or the closely related fields.
(2) The book disseminates knowledge of language testing to researchers, teachers, and general readers, and makes a significant contribution to the spread of assessment literacy.
(3) Practical details will be determined by the Award Selection Committee.
- The Award Selection Committee
(1) The Award Selection Committee consists of one chair, one vice chair and an unspecified number of members. (2) The chair, vice chair, and committee members of the Award Selection Committee each serve a 2- year term, and reappointment is not precluded. However, the maximum period of service (including periods as chair or vice chair) is 10 years.
(3) The chair, vice chair, and committee members of the Award Selection Committee shall be approved by the Board of Directors and the general meeting of the year prior to service on the committee.
(1) As a general rule, one award will be given each year.
(2) Individuals or groups receiving an award cannot be re-nominated for three years following the award. However, this does not apply if, in the case of co-authorship, the representative authors are changed and half or more of the co-authors are different.
(3) The books used for peer review by the Award Selection Committee members will be presented to them after completion.
(4) This award does not compete with the JLTA Best Paper Award given in current or previous years.
(5) The revision or abolition of this regulation shall be approved by the Award Selection Committee and the Board of Directors.
This revised regulation will be approved at the board meeting on October 23, 2022, and become effective from April 1, 2023.