The General English Proficiency Test (GEPT), developed and administered by the LTTC, targets English learners at all levels in Taiwan. This test corresponds to Taiwan's English education framework, meets the specific needs of English learners in Taiwan for self-assessment, and provides institutions or schools with a reference for evaluating the English proficiency levels of their job applicants, employees, or students. The GEPT promotes a balanced English learning process, covering the four language skills of listening, reading, writing, and speaking with the goal of improving the general English proficiency level of Taiwanese learners.
In 1997, the LTTC invited scholars and experts in English language teaching and testing from tertiary institutions around Taiwan to form a Testing Research Committee and a Testing Advisory Committee. In 1999, the project received support from the MOE, which recognized that the LTTC's work on the GEPT was in accord with its goal of promoting lifelong learning and encouraging the study of English. With the MOE's support, guidance from consultants and research committee members, and the administration of multiple pilot tests, the GEPT development project came to completion in July 2002.
Since its launch, the GEPT has reliably tested the English proficiency of over 5.1 million test-takers. The test is not only administered at over 100 different venues in Taiwan’s major cities, but also on the outlying islands of Penghu, Kinmen, and Matsu, thus allowing test-takers to choose the test location most convenient for them. The GEPT has generated positive washback effects on English learning and teaching in Taiwan and resulted in increased emphasis on communication skills and the nurturing of speaking and listening skills.
Acknowledging the excellence of the GEPT, more than 300 junior high schools or high schools, and hundreds of universities, private enterprises, and government agencies in Taiwan recognize GEPT scores. In recent years, an increasing number of universities around the world, including prestigious institutions in Hong Kong, Japan, France, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S., have begun to adopt the GEPT as a means of measuring the English language ability of Taiwanese applicants, thus benefitting students who are interested in pursuing further study overseas.
To further improve the quality of the GEPT and to ensure that the test is in line with the highest international standards of language testing, the LTTC conducts research projects and regularly shares research results with the international language teaching and testing community. The LTTC also provides research grants to external researchers who investigate GEPT-related topics to gain a deeper understanding of the reliability and validity of the GEPT and its relationship with other English language tests.