Introduction and Thesis
- The topic on standardized tests occurs as one of the most equivocal topics that have generated a controversial debate across various settings all around the world.
- Speaking of standardized tests, this connotes examinations that are structured to assess the academic performance of a student (Harris et al., 2011). The controversy is surrounding this topic aligns with the fact that there exists varying views on the use of a standardized test as a measure of students’ academic progress.
- Those in support for the use of standardized tests often argue that these tests offer a comprehensive platform that allows teachers, parents, and administrators to assess empirical evidence regarding their student’s performance. This is crucial as it allows for streamlining of a school curriculum to suit emerging concerns.
- While such notions are true, it is essential to comprehend with the fact that there exists a wider array of reasons, which demonstrate that the use standardized tests does not offer a comprehensive assessment of student intelligence.
- Opposing Views: As discussed above, there are various reasons as to why standardized tests do not offer a comprehensive means of assessing student performance.
- More importantly, standardized tests do not provide a substantive proof of an individual’s intellect.
- Instead, these tests are feasible for use in testing the capabilities of students emanating from different districts, especially in cases where teachers from these districts teach using different methods that focus on various issues (Dolezalek & Sayre, 2009).
- A close analysis of standardized tests shows that they are set based on what the state deems to be essential.
- On the contrary, the teachers often teach students on matters that they deem to be important and this makes students rely on what the teacher thinks is essential.
- Therefore, the standardized tests evaluate what the state perceives to be important; hence, the students will only write on what the teachers taught them. This makes standardized tests flawed means of assessing students’ intellect.
- Another reason that justifies the notion that standardized tests are not an effective and reliable means of assessing students intellect aligns with the fact that intelligence does not manifest in a single way.
- Evidently, students are drawn from different societal backgrounds characterized by varying societal variables. Therefore, subjecting all these students to a standardized test irrespective of these differences may not allow for effective evaluation of the students level of intelligence (Harris et al., 2011).
- In a nutshell, standardized test do not consider nor factor in the differences that exist amongst individuals. Therefore, it is impossible to subject students from different backgrounds to a standardized test and expect uniform performance. This supports the notion that standardized tests are not effective in evaluating student intellect; hence, should be repealed.
- Many at times, standardized tests comprise of multiple choice questions, and this begs the question; is there an absolutely correct answer for the multiple choice questions? In most cases, the choices given in a multiple choice questions are right, except that one of the choices is better than the other. Therefore, a student who chooses on of the choices is not absolutely wrong.
- On another note, there exist disparities in the performance of males and females in these standardized tests. Recent researches indicate that females often perform better than males in other tests, but the contrary happens during the standardized tests (Dolezalek & Sayre, 2009). This questions the reliability of the standardized tests. In conclusion, standardized tests are not effective in assessing students’ intelligence.
Dolezalek, H., & Sayre, R. (2009). Standardized Testing in Schools. Edina, Minn: ABDO Pub. Co.
Harris, P., Smith, B. M., & Harris, J. (2011). The Myths of Standardized Tests: Why They don't Tell you What you Think they do. Lanham, Md: Rowman & Littlefield Pub.