This test preparation even removes any chance of students being able to broaden their horizons with other supplementary education since test preparation commonly involves memorizing the same facts or knowledge. Standardized tests are an abomination to a student’s intelligence, teachers’ creativity, and school districts’ productivity.
Standardized testing does not measure how much a student achieves or actually understands for many reasons, therefore the stakes should be lowered. Achievement is when someone completes something successfully, and is differently defined for each person. Achievement is a very difficult thing to truly measure therefore how it is possible they be measured accurately by standardized tests. In “Standardized Tests Do Not Effectively Measure Student Achievement”, psychometrician Daniel Koretz believes there are two reasons testing does not accurately measure school achievement. First, tests don’t fully measure all important aspects of education, and second, tests only measure small parts of students ' knowledge (Philp Harris).
For many years, school systems and parents all over America have been asking- does high school testing measure a student’s knowledge fairly, accurately, and do they benefit the student. The tests do not accurately measure a student’s true academic ability. Furthermore, testing does not always fairly measure a student’s knowledge. High-stakes testing only adds stress to a student’s life. Studies have proven that testing is not beneficial to a student’s educational growth.
(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).
Is this test a true reflection of a students knowledge? A student’s academic level and future should not be determined by a 105 question test on reading and mathematics. As an alternative to taking these tests, students should have a comprehensive end of the year exam in each subject area covered throughout that year. Standardized test result in teachers who teach to the test, therefore not accurately measuring student’s knowledge, but instead measuring a student’s test taking ability. Meanwhile, students in other countries taking alternative assessments other than Standardized test excel above academic levels of the United States.
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.
Standardized test scores may mean nothing if the students are only learning to score well instead of really learning the material and how to succeed in the future, which is only the opposite of having a successful education. Should the focus of education really be on these tests?
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).
Standardized testing does not let students show how capable they truly are. School Districts in Washington State should remove the testing so that students are able to express their work ethics in a better way than a single test score. The SAT and ACT tests are all tests that every student will most likely take, the test is the same for everyone. The test is completely multiple choice questions, except for the writing part of the test. By the test having multiple choice questions, it is not a valid way of showing off a student’s knowledge.
Standardized tests are unfair because they fail to measure students' abilities, they cause an unnecessary amount of stress, and there are too many incentives to teach the test. Like Bert Lance one said, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.” This is the way many people feel about standardized testing. To them the tests appear to be a reliable and harmless way to measure students’ skills. A June-July 2014 Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll found that 93% of parents say standardized tests "should be used to identify areas where students need extra help" and 61% say their children "take an appropriate number of standardized tests” (Ruby). The issue with those statistics is parents do not know the direct effects of standardized tests, so how could they possibly know the tests’ faults and damage it causes?