December 2009

On behalf of the review committee for the UCLES/ILTA Lifetime Achievement Award (consisting of Sarah Briggs, Nick Saville, Carolyn Turner and myself) it is a great pleasure to announce that after carefully considering the several highly meritorious nominations received from the field, Professor Elana Shohamy has been selected to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award to be presented at the 32nd ILTA/LTRC meeting which will be held in Cambridge, UK in April 2010.
Over a long career, Elana has maintained her programme of empirical research, her insider critical critique of the basis of language assessment and her concern for understanding the interaction between language assessment and language policy. After completing her PhD at the University of Minnesota in 1978, she soon started to raise questions about the nature and use of tests. It is particularly in this area that her influence has been most felt: her recognition of the power of tests, whether in education or in immigration, built the critical link between testing and language policy, showing language tests to be one of the most common instruments for enforcing language policy; her influence was the core of the growing emphasis on ethics.
In her career, she has built a number of significant tests and has made major contributions to the understanding of washback and other key
research areas. The quality of her research and scholarship has built her a major place as a leader in the field, combining academic and
professional activities. Furthermore, her example and teaching have built a generation of language testers who look to her as a leader. She
is Professor of Language Education at Tel Aviv University but she has taught at a large number of universities in various parts of the world,
was the research director at the National Foreign Language Center in Washington, DC, and is affiliated with CALPER (Center for Advanced
Language Proficiency Education at Research) at the Pennsylvania State University.
She was one of the founders of an early national language testing group (ACROLT), chaired the AILA Commission on Language Testing and
Evaluation, and served as President of ILTA in 1999. Apart from her own extensive list of publications, she has played a major role in editing,
serving on the editorial boards of Language Testing, Language Assessment Quarterly and the Modern Language Journal and as founding co-editor of Language Policy.
Because of her many significant contributions over the years, the committee is pleased to announce that Professor Elana Shohamy has been selected to receive the 2010 UCLES/ILTA Lifetime Achievement Award.
J Charles Alderson
Chair, 2010 UCLES/ILTA Lifetime Achievement Award Committee


About Elana

Elana Shohamy is Professor of  Language Education at the School of Education, Tel Aviv University where she researches a variety of topics related to language policy in the context of conflicts and co-existence in multilingual societies, mostly of Israel. 
Elana Shohamy is a professor of Language Education at the School of Education, Tel Aviv University where she researches topics of multilingualism within the contexts of critical framework, language rights and co-existence.

Her work in language testing focuses on the power and misuses of tests in education and society and more recently on multilingual testing. The work in language policy addresses mechanisms used for creating de facto policies that penalize immigrants and minority groups.

In the past decade Elana researches ample dimensions of Linguistic Landscape (LL), referring to languages displayed in public spaces with a focus on LL as arenas of conflicts and contestation. Her books include: The Languages of Israel: Policy, ideology and practice (w/ B. Spolsky, 1999); The power of tests: A critical perspective of the uses of language tests (2001); Language policy: Hidden agendas and new approaches (2006); Linguistic landscape: expanding the scenery, (ed. w/ Durk Gurter, 2009); and Linguistic landscape in the city  (ed. w/ Ben Rafael and Barni, 2010). Elana is the editor of the journal Language Policy and the winner of the 2010 lifetime achievement award granted by ILTA in Cambridge, UK.

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