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  • Research Article
  • Open Access

Accountability and External Testing Agencies

  • 1
Language Testing in Asia20122:26

  • Published:


Standardized testing is ubiquitous in Japan. Inexpensive and easily mass distributed, their use has been encouraged at every level of the education system. Over the past thirty years, external testing agencies have been increasingly relied upon to make standardized tests for use as benchmarks in the education system and in the private sector. However, while great trust has been placed in these agencies that create these tests, many of them operate with very little supervision. This article will review the practices of some of the commonly used external testing agencies in Japan and discuss how greater accountability from these agencies might not only improve test validity, but make them more useful for score users and test takers.


  • language
  • testing
  • standardized tests
  • external agencies

Authors’ Affiliations

Shizuoka University, Japan


© Language Testing in Asia 2012