Standardized Testing: Is There Too Much At Stake?

799 words - 4 pages

In today’s day and age, the public school system has made it more and more rigorous to pass and graduate. One of the steps that students are now required to take is that they are now required to take a standardized based assessment. In many educational systems, if students do not pass this test they would not be allowed to pass to the next grade or even graduate in some cases. Not only does this test have severe negative consequences for them if they do not pass, but they also have negative consequences toward their instructors and their school. If students do not show growth or show proficiency this may affect their teachers’ pay or even their jobs. Schools may be unable to receive ...view middle of the document...

(Parents for Public Schools Inc.)
Campbell’s law states that “The more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it is intended to monitor.” (Miller) In a nutshell, this means that when the stakes are higher when gathering data that this data is more likely to be corrupt. Going hand in hand, there have been a rising number of reports of students, teachers, and schools cheating on these tests. (Miller)
A study conducted by the National Academy of Sciences in 2011, shows that there are many harmful effects on high stakes testing. Students have been losing interest in learning, but these tests also have been unable to sufficiently measure the knowledge of students. Also, the higher the stakes of the exam the more the teacher will narrow down their teachings to the test, which will then lead to a decrease in knowledge of untested subjects and material. It is recommended to use multiple measures of student progress. (Miller) For example, in New York City there is a group of schools known as the Performance Standards Consortium, who instead of giving exams to judge student progress; they require performance-based assessment tasks. Students who are in these schools, especially students who are considered at risk performed...

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