5 Benefits of a Granular Scoring Scale

If you’re in the language assessment space, you’ve probably heard of scoring scales like CEFR, ACTFL, TOEFL, and more. Scoring is a vital part of any language testing solution, so it’s good to know your scoring scales and how they’re serving you (or not serving you) as you assess test-takers’ language skills. 

Because our proprietary TrueNorth scale is the most granular in the language assessment world, we consider ourselves rightful experts about the unique advantages of more detailed scoring and how valuable it is for any organizations measuring language ability, especially on a larger scale. Read below to learn more about the benefits you can see in your organization!

1. Provides a more precise understanding of language ability

This first one is obvious, right? When you’re measuring language ability with, say, six levels, you can only understand so much about what that person can really do. But if you have 100 possible levels of qualification, you can tell exactly where someone is on their way to fluency.

precise data

Think of your scoring scale like a GPS. If a GPS only had six possible areas for you to be located within, it wouldn’t be very helpful, right? If you want to know exactly where you are, you’ll need many, many more points of reference.

2. Easier to standardize between languages and regions

With a smaller language scale, a lot can get lost in translation. It’s harder to match language skill between languages, regions, departments, and between you and your clients. One person’s level 5 language ability may be vastly different from another’s. 

Because a granular scoring scale gives you a much more precise indication of someone’s ability, it’s much easier to match between organizations, locations, and teams. It’s also simpler to apply to multiple languages, because you can better understand exactly what one level is compared to another. 

3. Allows you to create custom language benchmarks

Another reason granular scoring standards are great is because they allow you to create custom benchmarks and thresholds for your organization. Instead of relying on the generalized cutoff points of a smaller scale, you can take the more “raw” data and turn it into defined skill standards that actually fit your specific roles.

agent promotion

4. Shows who's on the edges of qualifying for different positions

Another way you can use granular scoring scales is for things like promotions and Learning and Development efforts.

A good employee obviously needs a lot of skills to be successful in their roles, but language skills are the foundation of high-quality performance. As you regularly assess these foundational abilities with an AI-driven language solution, you’ll create a powerful data set that helps inform all of the metrics throughout your organization. 

And, paired with custom thresholds for each position, you can help your employees progress toward reaching new qualification levels and achieving promotions with a perfect understanding of the language requirements needed for the position they’re shooting for.


L&D teams, in particular, can use these thresholds and detailed scores to help employees that are on the edge of qualifying for new positions or identify where there’s a lack of training or progress that needs to be addressed.

5. Allows you to match skill levels to outcomes

As you build your data stores with granular, detailed information about employees’ language skill levels and their positions, you’ll be able to map that data to different outcomes you’re seeing in your organization, too. Are better language-qualified hires performing better than their predecessors? Is your recent uptick in CSAT scores or lower hiring time related to better language assessment scores? With the data generated from AI-based language assessments, you can start to see the ways language testing is impacting your business for the better.


Did any of these points surprise you? At Emmersion, we know language ability is foundational to everything you do. And when you take advantage of AI testing and granular scores and apply them to your business in smart ways, you can really make a difference in driving better processes and results within your organization. 


Find out what better testing can do for you

AI language testing can help with so much more than just qualifying job applicants. Find out how automated assessments can make a big impact in our free ebook below:

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