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Quality initiative at Swedish Migration Agency prompts overhaul of language tests

Press Release   •   Sep 21, 2015 11:45 CEST

December 2, 2014, Swedish Migration Agency Director-General Anders Danielsson declares 2015 “Year of Quality”.

Proving determination to match the motto, December 19, 2014, Sten Heckscher, former president of the Swedish Supreme Administrative Court as well as head of the National Police Board, is given the task of evaluating authority use of linguistic evidence in the asylum procedure. (Photo by Sten T Knutson)

“Not getting quality”

The investigation, presented June 30, 2015, concludes that while language testing as such rests on firm scientific ground, the Swedish Migration Agency is not getting the quality required. Advice includes somewhat sharpening the criteria when procuring and tighten up quality assurance. An in-house co-ordinator would help achieve not only this, but would also be of help in setting up guidelines for when to use language tests and how to integrate the outcome of the tests in the asylum procedure.

Current supplier out?

The report of the investigation has a one page abstract in English. Go to page 3 in the document.

The investigation bears very much the signs of a call for action and no momentum has been lost in the response to that. The contract with the current supplier of language tests, which the agency could opt to run till August 31, 2018, has been given a premature expiration date of February 29, 2016.

Drastic measures can lead to drastic improvements and the Migration Agency and asylum claimants alike seem to have reason to hope for an improved system to emerge within the foreseeable future.

For further information, please contact:

Per Lunqe, Press Officer
per@lunqe.se
+46 (0)735 106010

Verified provides expert testimony regarding linguistic behaviour, in particular relating to an individual´s linguistic background. These services are required by police, migration authorities and immigration attorneys for trials in court.  We also assist non governmental organisations.

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