The Utilisation of Test-Taking Strategies by Saudi EFL High Schoolers in Al-Ahsa Region

Abdullah Al Fraidan, Abdullah AlSalman


It is highly recommended that educators know the importance of test-wiseness and test-unwiseness strategies which impact learners' performance on tests. This study aims to identify the common strategies learners adopt to achieve a high score and the most significant challenges that the learners face when taking the tests concerning the design of the tests and the clarity of instructions and questions. A group of six high school students has participated in the study. They have been given a vocabulary test with two types of questions (open and closed questions). The data has been collected by direct observation and a think-aloud protocol. The participants has utilized various test-taking strategies, which have helped them arrange ideas and gather information, such as asking about instructions, excluding choices, reading all questions before answering, and making a random choice of answers. Other students have utilized some TTS unwisely, such as skipping reading questions and instructions or reading them partially and choosing random answers without processing the whole question for meaning. The study helps to understand test-wise and test-unwiseness strategies and differentiate between conscious and unconscious strategies used by the participants. It has also suggested that educators should understand the impact of these strategies on their tests as this would help reduce the incidence of poorly framed questions and ambiguous instructions for learners. The study also raised the question of whether TTS should be taught to students or not. A topic that could further this investigation to reach wider insights and implications.

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World Journal of English Language
ISSN 1925-0703(Print)  ISSN 1925-0711(Online)

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