Standardized testing is a big part of the American education system, but there are many holes and missing parts to the system.
A standardized test is any exam that is administered and scored in a predetermined, standard manner. According to parcconline.org the tests are used to determine placement in schools, states and countries. Though the tests show placement, there are flaws in the standardized testing system.
Students do not see the tests as work that shows their great achievement but as a test they need to do well on to live up to the expectations of parents, teachers and higher level education schools. Not doing well on a certain test could prevent students from going to the college of students choice.
The tests do not show what each student is capable of achieving. According to institute4learning.com, the testing process is looking for a specific format for responses and does not value the students’ creative view because the response is not viewed by an actual human. A machine is looking for something that could not be there in the desired form.
The testing processes are not for educational purposes at all. They exist for administrative, political and financial purposes. The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career administration make billions of dollars, and politicians get elected based on promises for higher standardized test results. Also,school administrators get funding and avoids penalties by boosting test scores.
Students are the only ones who do not directly benefit from the testing. To them, it is a stupid test they have to take each year. The tests often place them into the class level they will be in the next school year.
The tests put unnecessary pressure and stress onto a student to do well. The standardized tests do not test what a student has learned but what they have most likely memorized weeks in advance for the test, meaning that after testing, the student will forget the material to memorize for the next upcoming test.
The new common core standard that schools nationwide adopted set higher standards in education in grades kindergarten through twelfth grade, according to parcconline.org. The new PARCC assessment the freshmen class recently took is part of the new standard. The PARCC assessments, or Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, are assessments made by concerned educators, parents and employers who want assessments that better measure students’ critical thinking and problem solving skills and their ability to communicate clearly.
These tests are designed to prepare young children who have no idea what they want to do for future colleges and employers. The new standardized tests are made to groom a whole new generation to fit into the ever growing and competing world of jobs and real life.
The freshman class has no desire to be part of the PARCC testing process. After testing, students said the tests were hard, the questions unclear and should have been considered as a form of torture. Students were unsure on how well they did on the tests, given that much of it was did not make sense.
“The tests are really difficult and aren’t worth the time,” freshmen Maria Petrecca said.
To the students, no one saw why the tests were necessary. To graduate, students who are freshman and under are required to have 18 points in each subject; many freshman joked that graduation rates will drop due to the difficulty of the PARCCs.
Only thirteen of the fifty states are taking the PARCCs, the others decided that another standardized test is unnecessary. When it comes to testing that can determine a future, the testing should be seen nationwide and if proven too difficult that thirty-seven states pull out, there should be a reconsideration.
Freshman Cody Kowalczyk said, “The tests were either way too simple or so complicated that there was no way we would have known the answer.”