The University of Akron Developed English Proficiency Test, the U-ADEPT, evaluates your oral English skills. Developed and administered by the English Language Institute (ELI), the U-ADEPT is a direct and interactive measure of speaking performance.

On this page, you will find answers to many of the questions that you have regarding the U-ADEPT. If you plan to take the U-ADEPT, read the information below carefully so that you are ready on test day.

What is the Purpose of the U-ADEPT?

In 1986, the State of Ohio passed a law requiring that each state university certify the adequacy of the English language proficiency of teaching assistants (TAs) who provide classroom instruction. The law mandates that universities establish an oral English assessment program for TAs and ensure that no TA engage in classroom teaching until he or she has attained the desired level of proficiency.

The University of Akron allows you to demonstrate your ability in spoken English in one of two ways:

  • With a score of 23 or higher on the speaking section of the Internet-based TOEFL Test, which is administered by Educational Testing Services.
  • With a passing score on the U-ADEPT.

What Will Happen on Test Day?

When you take the U-ADEPT, be sure to bring

  1. The Test Registration Form
  2. Your Photo ID

When you arrive in 302 Olin Hall for the test, you will meet the two test raters. They will ask you to fill out some paper work, they will check your registration form and your photo ID, and they will set up the audio recording equipment for use during the test. Then the test will begin.

Section 1: Warm-Up - The warm-up consists of introductions and some typical first-encounter small talk. This is not an official part of the test but serves to put you at ease with the test administrators, to give you and the test administrators a chance to become accustomed to each other's speaking styles, and to adjust the recording equipment as necessary. The warm-up takes no more than 3 minutes.

Section 2: Two Informal Discussions - The test includes two informal discussions on topics provided by the test administrators. For each discussion,

  • You are given a general topic orally.
  • You will have 60 seconds to think and prepare your response.
  • You will have three minutes to speak.

During the presentation, the evaluators will interact with you and might ask you for more information to engage you in the natural give-and-take of a dialogue.

Section 3: Two Role Plays - The test includes two role-plays, one in which you attempt to solve a problem and another in which you begin and carry on a conversation in order to get information from another person. One of the test administrators will participate in the role play with you.

For each role play,

  • The situation is described to you orally.
  • You will have 60 seconds to think and prepare.
  • You will have three minutes to speak and interact with another person.

Section 4: Teaching Simulation (15 minutes) - Because the purpose of the U-ADEPT is to assess whether or not you are proficient enough in spoken English to work as a teaching assistant at The University of Akron, the final section of the test is a teaching simulation. In lecture format, you will explain one basic concept in your field as if you were teaching a group of undergraduate students with no background knowledge in the topic. Your audience, the two test raters, will ask you questions during your teaching simulation. You will have a black or white board and an overhead projector available to you; you will NOT be allowed to use a computer or PowerPoint.

Before you come for the test, you should

  • Choose the concept in your field of study that you would like to teach.
  • Plan how you will present it to your audience and prepare your lecture.