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Transcript of TOK Presentation
Some people feel like the SAT only tests the knowledge of the white culture.
Students' grow up in different environments which results in everyone learning different skills. The creation of one universal, unbiased test is impossible. Two different types of standardized tests: Aptitude tests
Achievement tests Aptitude tests predict how well a person would preform in an educational setting.
Examples: SAT and ACT. These tests predict how students will do in college. Achievement tests are used to evaluate a school's effectiveness.
Examples: Diagnostic exams given at the beginning and end of each school year to see how much a student excels different subjects. How many of you have taken a standardized test before? How many of you have felt stress before, after, or during the test? How many feel like your test scores are not an accurate measure of your intelligence? How can we be certain that standardized testing is a valuable source for judging a person's intellect? Our focus is mainly the SAT History of the SAT:
SAT stands for:
Scholastic Aptitude test
The SAT was invented by Carl C. Brigham in 1923 and the first test was administered in June of 1926 to high school students.
This type of test is a reasoning test that assesses students' critical reading, mathematics, and writing skills.
This test helps show the amount of success a student will have in college.
The SAT is designed to assess the aptitude for learning rather than assessing the subjects students' learn in school. College officials believe that aptitude tests judge the amount of intelligence a person has.
We believe that the test was created about 89 years ago and can not possibly test the intelligence of students. There are many counter arguments to the factors that are said to make standardized tests an inaccurate measure of a person’s intelligence. If a student knows his or her material and the same material is being tested (ex: SAT or ACT) on every exam, they should be able to receive the same score on the exam repeatedly.
It is true that some students can guess answers and get lucky with their score. But, a student still needs to eliminate choices to make an educated guess so this is still an accurate measure of how much the student knows.
The pressure and nervousness that a student feels is brought on by themselves. If they are unprepared they’re likely to be more nervous and they won’t do well on the test anyway because they were not prepared. On test day, there are several factors that affect how a student will score. Not every student will feel the same, or have the same ability to concentrate. Some students are simply better at taking tests than others which gives them an unfair advantage. Therefore, one test taken on one day cannot be an accurate measure of a student’s intelligence. Ways of Knowing Emotion- most students are nervous before and/ or during standardized tests because they are stressed. They may think that their results decide their future which puts a lot of pressure on them. Lack of confidence and concentration are results from anxiety and nervousness which may negatively impact scores.
An extreme amount of stress is caused when proctors of the test give the test takers the five minute warning. The test takers become frantic and can possibly start making mistakes because they only have 5 minutes left in the test.
Also, we have witnessed several cases where people have suffered through major anxiety and they pass out, get sick, throw up, and have seizures. Is it worth it to go through these sicknesses just for a test score?
There are better ways to evaluate student achievement and ability. For example: teacher observation, documentation of student work, and performance-based assessments causes severe stress in young students. Reason- reason plays an important role in taking standardized tests, especially in multiple choice questions. Being able to use process of elimination can greatly increase a student’s score. Language- foreign students are still required to take standardized tests, but this is not necessarily fair to them because they did not grow up with the same lessons native students did.
Standardized tests are in English so people from other countries that speak different languages have a hard time comprehending the questions written in their non-native language.
Special Education students have to take the test in the same type of testing conditions as other students. The exam administration gets rid of, meaning does not score, the questions most people get wrong or omit. This does not reflect the differences among people. Proof that Standardized Testing is not valuable source Colleges do not look at tests scores as closely anymore. They have noticed that standardized tests are not an accurate measure of a student's intelligence. This is why some schools have gone test optional. “Do standardized tests truly provide an objective means of measuring students’ achievements?”
An expert, Kohn, believes that they do not.
He argues saying, “are we measuring intelligence and practical ability or are we measuring test-taking ability”?
He believes, along with others, that “standardized tests are unrealistic” and do not prepare students for anything in life. Eric Rosenberger, who is a medical doctor and an SAT tutor says, “[the] SAT is not an accurate measure of a person’s intelligence. There is no evidence that the SAT do not test anything except for your ability to answer questions...
it is not a general test of student’s intelligence.” Dr. Sally Raskoff, who is a professor of Sociology and Ethic Studies, says that relying on the SAT as an accurate measure of a person’s intelligence has become problematic. No one type of test can capture what we know. This goes hand in hand with the ethics area of knowledge. Tests are completely reliable. Stressful testing is a normal and expected way of asserting what students have learned. Tests do not reflect the current knowledge about how students learn. Knower's Perspective We both believe that standardized testing is not an accurate measure of a person’s intelligence. We have concluded this from our own experiences with standardized tests. For example, we both receive above average grades in our high school courses yet only received average grades on our SAT’s and ACT’s. We think the reason for the differences in our grades is because these standardized tests do not accurately measure our intelligence. We have both experienced anxiety on test day. On the days of one of my (Ally) tests, I was sick. For these reasons, we can’t say that standardized test scores are valid because all the factors involved cannot possibly produce an accurate score. We also believe they are not an accurate measure because colleges are going test optional as they are realizing that test scores do not measure intelligence. I (Kelly) have been accepted into several schools that were test optional. I did not give the schools my scores and I received the highest scholarship they offer because of my achievements in and out of school excluding my test scores. Implications in Other Areas Economy: Standardized test companies are a major part of our economy. Companies such as Collegeboard and ACT student generate a ton of money by making the test booklets and scantrons, distributing the tests, collecting admission money from students, etc. Standardized tests have a bigger impact on our economy than we think.
There is also tons of money spend by parents and schools for individual tutors and tutoring companies to help students study. Environment: How many trees do you think have been used that have provided the paper for each test booklet and scantron for every student’s copy of every exam? Plus, think about all the wasted paper in each booklet where it only says “DO NOT WRITE ON THIS PAGE”. If standardized tests were abolished, at least thousands of trees could be preserved. Accurate Measure Not an Accurate Measure We believe standardized tests are not an accurate measure of a person's intelligence. We understand that all of us have to suffer through these tests because they are believed to be our ticket into a "good" college. It is believed that if you score low on these tests then your chances of getting into the college of your dreams are lowered.This is the reason standardized tests are stressful. Proof that Standardized Testing is a valuable source Researchers at Case Western Reserve University, Meredith C. Frey and Douglas K. Detterman, have come to the conclusion that SAT’s relate directly to IQ tests. They claim that “the SAT could be used as a substitute” for IQ tests. Also they say that “the origins of the SAT can be traced back to intelligence tests that were originally given to screen entrants into the armed forces”. Every student has to take different types of standardized tests in order to get into college. Parents stress about how their child will do because the better the score on their test is the greater the chance their child will get into a good school and get scholarship money. Distractions affect how students do on the tests as well. The proctors of the test, in our schools, have a tendency to walk up and down the aisles and make a lot of noise. The women teachers walk around the room clinking their heels against the floor and sometimes teachers whisper. Areas of Knowledge Human Sciences- Psychology is a major part of standardized testing. Taking tests affects each person differently. Some people get more anxious than others and this can affect their score. Some people have more riding on their score than others and this can make them feel pressured which can affect their score.
Also the 'cognitive ability,' also known as their intelligence, affects someone's decision making process. The SAT sections are basically all multiple choice. If someone's cognitive ability level is low then their SAT score will be low and if their cognitive ability level is high then their score will be high. Ethics- It can be questioned whether it is morally right to enforce that students take standardized tests. If the tests are not completely reliable then it is not morally right to exploit these test-taking students. One of the main reasons standardized tests are given is to measure how much a student has learned. However, if the test is not an accurate measure of intelligence, it is unfair to give a student their results because they are not reliable. Some people cheat on these tests which make the scores invalid. For example, Samuel Eshaghoff was the person charged for impersonating students and taking their SAT for them in Great Neck, New York Some people have more money to spend on tutors or practice books for the SAT than others which gives them an unfair advantage in scoring higher. It is accurate because every student has to take the same type of test which gives them the same level of unfairness. The SAT can can be taken in different months of the year. It's possible that the June test can be easier than the May test. This is unfair because students who take the June test can score higher than the students who take the May test because different tests are administered. It is a cumulative test to show what people know and do not know Social: In order to prepare for the SAT an extensive amount of studying is needed. This studying time takes away from the time that teenagers can spend with their families and friends. Students already have to deal with school work and having to prepare for the SAT on top of that takes away from their social life. Psychologists feel that SAT tests are a strong indication of a person's intelligence. They feel that this test is a strong predictor of how students' will do in their first years of college. People believe the tests are valid and they accurately measure intelligence and predict future achievements Author Howard Gardner says that it is impossible for the SAT to measure a person's intelligence. The SAT only covers 1/3 of a person's intelligence. He says that there are 7 different types of ways to test intelligence: logical, linguistic, musical, spatial, interpersonal, and intrapersonal. The SAT, containing the mathematics and critical reading sections, only tests two of the seven different types of intelligence: logical intelligence and linguistic intelligence. Health: Doctors say it is very important for teenagers to get sleep. They need to get as much sleep as a baby in order to stay healthy. Teenagers are very busy during this day and age, which makes it impossible for them to get enough sleep. Is it that necessary for teenagers to get up early and sit for a four hour test?