The Validity and Reliability of Rhythm Measurements in Automatically Scoring the English Rhythm Proficiency of Chinese EFL Learners

  •  Jin Chen    
  •  Jianghao Lin    
  •  Xinguang Li    


This article aims to find out the validity of rhythm measurements to capture the rhythmic features of Chinese English. Besides, the reliability of the valid rhythm measurements applied in automatically scoring the English rhythm proficiency of Chinese EFL learners is also explored. Thus, two experiments were carried out. First, thirty students of English major and five native English speakers were selected to read ten English sentences. The participants were divided into four proficiency groups according to human scoring. Then seven previously proposed rhythm measurements were investigated in four proficiency groups. One-way ANOVA results showed that five rhythm measurements were valid to distinguish different English rhythm patterns among four proficiency groups. Based on the valid measurements, an experiment of automatic scoring for English rhythm proficiency was also conducted through statistical technique Multiple Regression. The correlation coefficient between the autoscores and the scores made by experienced teachers reached 0.866. The result showed a high reliability of the objective evaluation for English rhythm proficiency of Chinese EFL learners.

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