Test Takers’ Perceptions towards BEC Exams: a Case Study of a Russian University

Keywords: International English language exams, BEC, qualitative study, Russia, motivation, expectations

Abstract

This is a qualitative study of candidates’ motivation to take BEC exams and their expectations towards the exam results, which was conducted at the Cambridge Exam Preparation Center in a Russian university. The research dataset comprised 33 participants who took part in face-to-face in-depth semi-structured interviews. Overall, candidates show a positive attitude to BEC at different exam levels. The main reasons for preparing for and taking the exams are extrinsic and defined by the institutional environment. The respondents opt for BEC exams as they intend to receive an international education (master’s level) and/or build a successful career in international organizations. The study also revealed a connection between candidates’ expectations toward exam results and their age and level of language proficiency.   This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Author Biographies

Elizaveta Smirnova, National Research University Higher School of Economics

PhD in Philology, Associate Professor of Foreign Languages Department

Tatyana Permyakova, National Research University Higher School of Economics

Doctor of Philology, Professor of Foreign Languages Department

Marina Sheveleva, National Research University Higher School of Economics

PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor of Foreign Languages Department

Published
2017-12-31
How to Cite
Smirnova, E., Permyakova, T., & Sheveleva, M. (2017). Test Takers’ Perceptions towards BEC Exams: a Case Study of a Russian University. Journal of Language and Education, 3(4), 27-36. Retrieved from https://jle.hse.ru/article/view/6991