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Spanish 203 - Oral Exams

There are two oral exams in this course. The first oral exam counts as 4% of the course grade and the second oral exam counts as 6%.

The first oral exam (week 5) will consist of a video recorded conversation, minimum 8 minutes, between you and one of your classmates. The second exam (last week) will consist of a conversation between you and one of your classmates moderated by your instructor. It will last for about 15 minutes.

Each member will be graded individually based on both individual contributions and interactions with the group. Each member must participate!

VERY IMPORTANT: The first oral exam must be submitted on the  date posted on the course calendar. If you cannot submit your video recording on the due date because of a justified reason, let your teacher know as soon as possible to discuss possible alternatives.

VERY IMPORTANT: The second oral exam may take place outside class, during the last week of the course. Once you and your partner have agreed on the topic of the conversation, you need to set a date, and time with your instructor. You must be present and ready at your assigned time. NO MAKE-UPS ALLOWED.

TOPICS AND INSTRUCTIONS

The purpose of the oral exams is to evaluate your spontaneous speaking ability as well as your research on a topic related to the Spanish speaking world. Your exam may focus on one of the topics discussed in the videos of the FLASH CULTURA section and/or the readings in the IMAGINA section. Your teacher may also propose additional topics in class.

  • IMAGINA: Chile. Rompecabezas de maravillas
  • FLASH CULTURA: Puerto Rico: ¿nación o estado?
  • IMAGINA: Bolivia y Paraguay. Historia y naturaleza
  • FLASH CULTURA: El mundo del trabajo
  • IMAGINA: Perú. Lima: el encanto de la historia
  • FLASH CULTURA: Inventos argentinos
  • IMAGINA: Argentina y Uruguay: diversiones para todos
  • FLASH CULTURA: Lo mejor de Argentina
  • IMAGINA: España. Confluencia de civilizaciones
  • FLASH CULTURA: Machu Picchu: encanto y misterio

This activity requires you to find out information about your topic and to explain and discuss it in an informative and conversational way. You will need to look for information in:

  • Books and academic journals.
  • Newspapers and magazines.
  • Reliable websites, such as those owned by universities, educational institutions, government agencies, NGOs, or other organizations with a trustworthy reputation.

Your teacher will want to know where you found the information to prepare for the conversation. On the due date for each exam, you will need to submit a list of at least 3 publications or websites that you have consulted.

You will be assessed on your spontaneous speaking ability, which means you cannot memorize sentences. You will not have access to note cards or any written material during the conversation. Try to focus on general information that is interesting and easy to remember.

In the second exam, moderated by your teacher, do not just wait for your teacher to ask questions. You can ask questions yourself, to your teacher and/or to your partner.

In class, your teacher will give you more detailed instructions about both the content and the format of each of the two oral exams.

EVALUATION

Excellent
(A)
Good
(B)
Fair
(C)
Poor
(D)
Unsatisfactory
(E)
CONTENT AND CULTURAL PREPARATION 25 - 22.5 22 - 20 19.5 - 17.5 17 - 15 14 - 0
GRAMMAR 20 - 18 17 - 16 15 - 14 13 - 12 11 - 0
VOCABULARY 15 - 13.5 13 - 12 11.5 – 10.5 10 - 9 8 - 0
FLUENCY, EASE OF EXPRESSION AND PRONUNCIATION 20 - 18 17 - 16 15 - 14 13 - 12 11 - 0
INTERACTION (conversation dynamics) 20 - 18 17 - 16 15 - 14 13 - 12 11 - 0

CONTENT AND CULTURAL PREPARATION
EXCELLENT: very well-prepared; interesting, new, and relevant information; illuminates content using visuals or other media to enhance delivery of the information; time and effort to find quality information is evident.
GOOD: well-prepared; most of the information provided is interesting, new, and relevant; some use of visuals and other media; time and effort to find relevant information is evident.
FAIR: some preparation; some information is relevant and new but most is general and/or was covered in class; no use of visuals; little effort to find relevant information.
POOR: very little preparation; all information is general and/or was covered in class; no use of visuals; the three sources of information are missing.
UNSATISFACTORY: no preparation; not enough information to evaluate; message is incomprehensible.

GRAMMAR
EXCELLENT: student uses the grammar needed for task completion; grammar errors do not interfere with communication of the message.
GOOD: student uses the grammar needed for task completion most of the time; most grammar errors do not interfere with communication of the message.
FAIR: student sometimes uses the grammar needed for task completion, but not most of the time; grammar errors interfere with communication of the message.
POOR: student does not use the grammar needed for task completion; grammar errors often prevent communication of the message.
UNSATISFACTORY: not enough spontaneous speech produced to evaluate; message is incomprehensible.

VOCABULARY
EXCELLENT: student uses vocabulary at the appropriate level; incorporates a variety of words related to the topic; does not use English.
GOOD: student uses the vocabulary required by the task most of the time; incorporates some variety of words related to the topic; does not use English.
FAIR: student sometimes uses the vocabulary required by the task, but not most of the time; repeats use of a few words; resorts to English; misuses of vocabulary interfere with communication of the message.
POOR: students does not use the vocabulary required by the task; resorts to English repeatedly; misuse of vocabulary often prevents communication of the message.
UNSATISFACTORY: not enough spontaneous speech produced to evaluate; message is incomprehensible.

FLUENCY, EASE OF EXPRESSION AND PRONUNCIATION
EXCELLENT: student speaks spontaneously, no memorized material; expresses self with ease; minimal hesitation; pronunciation and intonation errors do not interfere with communication of the message.
GOOD: student speaks spontaneously, no memorized material; expresses self with ease most of the time; minimal hesitation most of the time; most pronunciation and intonation errors do not interfere with communication of the message.
FAIR: student speaks spontaneously, no memorized material; expresses self with ease but not most of the time; frequent hesitation; pronunciation and intonation errors interfere with communication of the message
POOR: student speaks spontaneously, no memorized material; frequent hesitation; pronunciation and intonation errors often prevent communication of the message.
UNSATISFACTORY: memorized material; not enough spontaneous speech produced to evaluate; message is incomprehensible.

INTERACTION (conversation dynamics)
EXCELLENT: student understands questions and responds effectively; takes the lead on occasion by asking relevant questions without dominating; actively listens and pays attention to what others are saying; there is balance in the conversation.
GOOD: student understands questions and responds effectively most of the time; takes the lead on occasion by asking questions without dominating; actively listens and pays attention to what others are saying; there is balance in the conversation most of the time.
FAIR: student understands and responds effectively to some but not most of the questions; tends to react rather than initiate; interest in the conversation is not evident; the conversation is off-balance most of the time.
POOR: student waits to be asked questions and never initiates; misunderstands many of the questions and/or does not respond logically; body language suggests lack of interest in the conversation; minimal effort to interact; conversation is off-balance.
UNSATISFACTORY: not enough spontaneous speech produced to evaluate; message is incomprehensible.

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