Standardized tests have contributed a lot to American education since the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Over the years our nation has gradually expanded the use of standardized tests. But the question is, are we improving our country through the accomplishments made from monitoring our students progress? Or are we diminishing the young people’s creativity by programming them with A, B, C, and D to fill in or circle? Turns out, there are a lot of disputes on the topic.
Proponents argue that standardized test are a means of measurement of the students proficiency and skill. The results show taxpayers, parents, and the government that the teachers and districts are accountable. Standardized test are non- discriminatory because the subject matter of the test is the same for all students. This guarantees that if there is a decrease in any subject or schools widespread its acknowledged. Standardized tests also allow students to focus on important basic skills all student should be adept at. According to ProCon.org, Richard P. Phelps conducted an experiment that found that 93% of studies on student testing large scale have a “positive effect” on student achievement.
Opponents argue that standardized tests are not fair or impartial, and that the test takes away a chance of school systems providing innovators, inventors, and critical thinkers. The narrow curriculum that correlates with the test forces the teachers to “teach to the test.” According to ProCon.org, a five year University of Maryland study completed found that teachers feel pressured to “teach to the test.” There is a decrease in the effort put into complex and intellectual assignments. When the No Child Left Behind act was established it mandated standardized test in all 50 states, the result for that act was America’s rank declining from 18th in the world to 27th in the world in math with similar decline in science an no reduction in ELA. The downfall in the education system was introduced when the standardized were.
I personally think that standardized test are both beneficial and counterproductive at the same time. But on that note, I think that it would be difficult to know if there is an obstacle preventing the students from exceeding to their full potential mentally. Standardized tests do that, and people should be aware if the students of this nation are failing. But the fact that when standardized test was introduced into our education system and we did not go up the ranks instead we declined proves it did affect some portion of how students work today. There are many types of tests but the one that provoked the most controversy is high stakes achievements test. Same with me, with high stake achievement test the impact can do a lot of damage. It does not alter the student’s future in school, but the school and the teachers in the school which results in an abundance of pressure on both the student and teacher.
Markoff, Steven C. “Standardized Tests – ProCon.org.” ProConorg Headlines. ProCon.org, 2 June 2016. Web. 02 June 2017.