Good-for-Something Standardized Tests
May 23, 2008 in Personal Reflection
Tags: about, accomodate, assess, assessment, benefits, compensate, contrary, diligent, disagree, divergent, emphasis, encourage, evil, good, list, observant, quietly, sit, something, standardized, standardized tests, still, student, tests, things, varying, welcome
Whether or not standardized tests assess content knowledge or critical thinking, they certainly assess the following traits, with varying levels of emphasis.
Feel free to add to the list.
Student is able to sit still, quietly.
Student is able to follow instructions.
Student is diligent, and observant.
Student fixes own mistakes, or corrects self, when shown to be in the wrong.
Student can tell, after the fact, when said student has made a mistake.
Student has high tolerance for bureaucratic poppycock.
Student understands spoken and written English at a moderate level.
Student uses clues to figure out what answer the authority wants them to give.
Student individually compensates for any skills above that said student lacks.
As a last resort, student retakes test and tries retaining knowledge the second time around.
If school isn’t meant to prepare students with content knowledge, but for life — as more than a few bloggers have proposed — then standardized assessments shouldn’t assess students’ knowledge, but assessable skills.
My take: There are two or three applications for these skills out in the real world.
Divergent or contrary opinions are not simply welcome; they are encouraged.
Every day, we experience a thousand moments, each of those moments setting in motion a thousand slightly different possibilities in the future. When we make these choices, we are thrust toward another day's crossroads, where we have another thousand choices.
Given the infinite number of choices we make in a lifetime, why do we choose so many of the same routes and make just as many of the same mistakes as our parents and grandparents?
I plan to learn from their mistakes. Let's see how far I get.
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