While taking the test, students realize they have not learned some of the material. This is due to poor planning on the states part because, the test is made to test above students’ grade levels. Before, when teachers were making their own teaching plans, they could tell how the test would be from past years and plan accordingly. Poor planning does not only affect the students but the teachers because teachers have to follow a curriculum blindly, they cannot teach their students how to anticipate an unexpected question. The best answer they can give is to try their best and pick the answer that makes the most sense.
However, a testing error may occur. A testing error is when a student gets an answer correct of information they did not actually know or an answer incorrect, they may have actually known (Gellman, 30)The people who create these tests want straightforward measures. However, test designers do not design these tests to measure what a student can do academically (Fusaro, 1). Large testing companies produce tests and sell them all over the country. This causes the test to be not specialized for the school or county and students do not do as well as they could have if the test was specialized (Popham, 4).three possible ways of testing a student’s knowledge exists: multiple choices, answer in essay form, or they are asked to perform a task and then graded on the performance (Merrow, 5).
Many teachers fear that they are sending the students into secondary education unprepared. If these tests are meant to help students with their future, but fail so miserably at doing so then why have them at all? This is the growing question in the students, teachers and parents mind. If these are meant to help why haven’t the students seen results? Not only do students focus on a single test, but are the teachers and stress causing the students to feel stressed?
Considering our students, the education system has left myself as well as many other students battling with weaknesses due to the constant worry to compete rather than teach. The requirements and the motives of No Child Left Behind has made a negative impact on myself, due to teachers teaching the test in order to keep their funding. The Common Core and No Child Left Behind are both numbers driven. While teachers focus on keeping their funding, the government is focused on ranking and less about the minds of our future, our students. No Child Left Behind requires standardized testing, which requires students in a state to take the same test as everyone else under the same conditions.
(Ravitch). Standardized test scores might make students lose faith in their goals. When trying to become an expert at specific careers, many skills are required to students that the standardized testing does not provide (Brown). For instance, students do not learn creativity, perspective, and creative thinking on the tests and according to Brown, Roediger, and McDaniel, never learning these skills can impede the success of these students in real life (“Standardized Testing”). Standardized testing lacks skills such as creative thinking, compassion, and perspective (Sternberg).
Richard says, "...the time spent on schooling students in the techniques of test taking--how to fill in answer sheet bubbles, whether to guess or not, what to do when time runs short, and so on?”(Phelps 1) Teachers are so focused on the test scores reflecting back on the teacher and not focused on if students actually learn the material. Students are taught to use their short term memory to remember the material for the test in a week rather than leaning the material for a lifetime. Students get to college and are lost because they do not remember any of the coursework. Linda says, "Individual teacher 's scores do not accurately reveal their ability to teach.” (Hammond 2) Stressing over test scores is what every teacher does, while students are not
Secondly, as stated by The Pros And Cons Of Standardized Testing, ¨Educators may also stop trying new techniques and teaching methods in the classroom¨ (Nixon). Many teachers do this because they are fearful that if they modify their teaching style, then student achievement on the standardized test would decrease. This tactic can also result in a repetitive atmosphere in the classroom, which could result in students becoming disinterested in the subject. Thirdly, when teachers teach to the test, they consider the material included on the test to be more important than alternative material taught throughout the year. This can be supported by the quote, ¨We don't learn much from standardized testing, and we have lost a great deal by giving it so much prominence¨ (¨Is The Use Of Standardized Tests Improving Education In America¨).
Standardized testing does not truly evaluate a student’s knowledge. “High schools are turning into ‘giant test-prep centers’, effectively closing off intellectual inquiry and undermining enthusiasm of learning (and teaching)” (Wallace 4). Students are now being taught in such a fashion that all of the learning is aimed at standardized tests, whether that is state issued tests or tests that are used to analyze students for colleges. Colleges have used standardized tests such as the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) or the ACT (American College Test) to choose which students would be accepted into their schools and who would not be. “Another problem with the SAT is that today so many preparation methods exist; the tests are not really a true showing of what a student knows” (Wallace 1).
It changes their perspective on how the world works. Children feel pressured enough at school, adding ways to test their knowledge isn’t going to prove anything. A change in the grading system might be what we need. In “School is Bad for Children”, John Holt explains his view on how school
Many challengers argue that standardized tests do not take external factors into account, for the intelligence of a bad test taker is not reflected on the test. Multiple students develop test anxiety which ultimately encumbers performance. Additional external factors that may impact test performance include bullying at school, conflict at home, and confidence in one’s test taking ability, or lack thereof. Standardized testing also causes teachers to base their curriculum only around the test, hindering students’ overall learning potential. Due to test results reflecting teacher quality, teachers are pressured to fully prepare their students for these tests.