The Current Education System Of Measuring Student Performance Through Standardized Tests And Grades

The Current Education System Of Measuring Student Performance Through Standardized Tests And Grades

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The pressure to do well in high school is one of the most prevalent and emerging problems among students. A study conducted in a high school in Fremont, California found that a shocking 54 percent of students showed symptoms of depression, and 80 percent also suffered from symptoms of anxiety. These alarming findings are not just limited to the high school--according to the to a report from the American Psychological Association, forty-five percent of high school students reported experiencing extreme stress during the school year. If high school students are already mirroring similar stress levels that adults are experiencing, they could potentially steer themselves in the direction for a future of harmful chronic stress and illnesses. Documentary films and numerous reports addressing these issues have been published, and people have since been advocating for less workload and competition in high school. The current education system of measuring student performance through standardized tests and grades was intended to prepare high school students for college and for future success. Instead, it has caused unintended consequences of high levels of pressure and unhealthy mindsets of students. Promoting competition and high achievement is doing more harm than good, and should be de-emphasized.
While people tend to think of competition as a catalyst for motivation, competition is detrimental to the self-esteem of students and motivates cheating instead. Although competition can push students to strive to reach the top, only a few can be on the top of the pile. When all students want to be on the top, people who don’t do as well will naturally be placed at the bottom and be trampled upon by those that just desperately want to reach the...


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... that they accomplish is seen as a step towards the path to getting into a top college and leading a successful life. However, the reality is that as the population of the world is increasing, colleges get more and more applicants each year. Hence, there are fewer spots available, making it an even more burdensome process for colleges to decide who to admit and who to deny, especially when so many of the students already have similar profiles with high standardized testing scores and myriads of extracurricular activities listed on their application. The harder it is to get into a student’s dream college, the more pressure the student will undergo.
Rather than promoting high achievement and the drive to success, high schools should strive to encourage students to find their match colleges, and cultivate their interests to make the most out of the student’s abilities.

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