A. Chami, A. Zenagui, M. Dib, O. Boucheta, A. Baraka

University of Mascara (ALGERIA)
The assessment became a necessity in the field of foreign language learning. The literature related to this field shows the status that this phenomenon gained in the teaching learning process and how it serves both the learners and the teachers to achieve competency during their learning/teaching process.

Assessment is one of the different types of evaluation. It is considered as a necessity in any teaching activity. It is a process that helps the learners as well as the teachers to improve the teaching/learning process in which they are involved. It plays a non-negligible role in gauging the students’ competencies and level of acquiring the different language skills, mainly writing.

This paper seeks an investigation of the utility of assessment in improving student’s writing ability, the case of First Year English Degree Students at University of Mascara. Writing is considered as a problem that demotivates most students, leading the researchers to enquire the effectiveness of practice, evaluation, and feedback in an urgent need to change the learners’ attitude towards writing and composing.

First, we will expose briefly the linguistic situation in Algeria and the teaching of English and provide an accurate description to the methodological approach(es) used in the investigation, the research questions and hypotheses, the research population as well as the research instrumentation.

After that, we will provide background information about:
1. Writing,
3. The process of assessing the writing ability

Finally, we will discuss the different reasons for teaching the writing skill and assessing students’ compositions in a foreign language, mainly in English, with an account of the most important benefits obtained from assessing the writing activity.