An English test is different from many other forms of assessment in that English is a general discipline that often does not have only one "right" answer. Because of this, it is important to write an English test that requires a demonstration of knowledge but allows for some flexibility.
Determine where your students are before beginning to write the English test. Putting forth concepts that are either too challenging or too basic will not lead to a desired learning outcome.
Offer a chance for your students to review the material being covered in the English test before the day it is proctored. As a teacher you're in the classroom to assess comprehension, not humiliate students' lack of knowledge.
Work in as many essay response questions as you can. An English test needs to provide the student a chance to prove how much they know, not how much they don't.
Restrict the number of questions you ask on the English test so that it can be completed within the allotted time. You cannot expect students to write a volume in less than an hour.
Provide your students with a choice of questions to answer. For example, have them choose three out of five possible essay questions rather than only providing them with only three options you alone determine.
Allow students to revise their English test if they are dissatisfied with their grade. When you write an English test it is important to remember opinions can vary widely.