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Dr Philip Smyth

  • managing the full lifecycle of creating a secure test, including designing test specifications, test items and assessment scales for paper-based and online language tests

  • overseeing large scale face-to-face and online Test of English for Educational Purposes (TEEP) test administrations in the UK and internationally 

  • using statistical analysis for monitoring language test reliability and validity

  • undertaking assessment consultancy projects for other UK-based and international Higher Education institutions

Areas of interest

I have scholarship and research interest in the areas of assessment in higher education, learning-oriented assessment, exemplar use, feedback, assessment literacy, and the assessment of writing


As the Deputy Director of Academic English Assessment, my role is to support the Director and lead on various test and assessment-related activity both within the International Study and Language Institute (ISLI) and with external stakeholders at partner institutions and other organisations internationally.  

Academic qualifications

  • Doctor of Education (EdD), (Thesis rated Excellent and won HKU best thesis award), The University of Hong Kong, 2019

  • MPhil English Language Education, The University of Nottingham, 2013   

  • MA Applied Linguistics (Awarded Distinction), The University of Reading, 2005      

  • Cambridge/RSA DELTA, ITTC Bournemouth, 1999

  • Trinity College TESOL Certificate, Cicero Tunbridge Wells, 1995

  • BA (Hons) European Studies, University of Central Lancashire, 1995

Professional bodies/affiliations

  • Member of BALEAP (the Global Forum for English for Academic Purposes Professionals)

  • Member of the Testing, Assessment and Feedback Special Interest Group of BALEAP (TAFSIG)

  • Member of UKALTA (The UK Association of Language Testing and Assessment

Selected publications

Smyth, P., & Carless, D. (2021). Theorising how teachers manage the use of exemplars: towards mediated learning from exemplars. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 46(3), 393-406. 


Smyth, P., To, J., & Carless, D. (2020). The interplay between rubrics and exemplars. In P. Grainger & K. Weir (Eds.), Facilitating Student Learning and Engagement in Higher Education through Assessment Rubrics (pp. 57-68). Cambridge Scholars. 


Selected Conference Papers and Presentations

Smyth P.D. (2022) The interplay of exemplars and criteria in helping students and teachers to internalise writing assessment standards in Higher Education. The Language Testing Forum, UKALTA, The University of Bristol.


Smyth P.D. (2022) Sharing exemplars with students: The what, when, how and why. The Language and Teaching Research Forum, The University of Reading 


Smyth P.D. (2019) Sharing exemplars effectively to help students develop their writing skills. The Hong Kong Continuing Professional Development Hub conference, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, HK  

Smyth P.D. (2019) Investigating teachers’ use of exemplars: Difficulties in managing effective dialogues.  Assessment in Higher Education conference (AHE), Manchester, UK  



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