Standardized tests, do they really matter?

Standardized tests, do they truly measure your educational quality?


Kamri Honstetter, reporter

Everyone in high school knows the dreaded words ¨standardized tests¨ and everyone always argues that it doesn’t matter whether you take them or not.

To be honest it doesn’t measure your educational quality and you shouldn’t have to stress about them too much as some teachers and parents may tell you. 

The tests are too different from measuring education to measuring and individuals’ ability that they create a misconception of actual educational accuracy.

Nowadays, if a school’s standardized test scores are high, people think the school’s staff is effective.

If a school’s standardized test scores are low, they see the school’s staff as ineffective.

If a test covered all the knowledge and skills in the domain, it would be far too long.

Employing standardized achievement tests to ascertain educational quality is like measuring temperature with a tablespoon.

The overarching reason that students’ scores on these tests do not provide an accurate index of educational effectiveness is that any inference about educational quality made based on students’ standardized achievement test performances is apt to be invalid.¨ 

Standardized achievement tests have a different measurement mission than indicating how good or bad a school is. If the tests were created for individual schools and were much longer then it would be a lot better measurement, but they are not.

because of the small sample of knowledge that is tested, standardized tests provide a very incomplete picture of student achievement.

Many things aren’t measured such as creativity, critical thinking, resilience motivation, persistence, endurance, etc., and you’d think that many colleges and parents would want to know some of these things rather than just math science, and English.

As psychometrician Daniel Koretz puts it, scores on a standardized test “usually do not provide a direct and complete measure of educational achievement.”

Tests can measure only a portion of the goals of education, which are necessarily broader and more inclusive than the test could be. Of course, a teacher can’t teach all of these things from a textbook.

But, as Bracey points out, she can model them or talk with students about people who exemplify them. But she has to have enough time left over to do so after getting the kids ready for the standardized test of “achievement.”

Although the tests are an inadequate measurement of personal ability and technique, they do provide some helpfulness.

Standardized tests are like a really well-formed personality test and they do help colleges understand if that person is able to make it through their certain course.

Standardized tests are the best predictor of a student’s first-year success, retention, and graduation. “The value of admissions test scores in predicting college success has increased since 2007, while the value of grades has decreased, due in part to high school grade inflation and different grading standards.”

Although tests aren’t certain in measuring one’s ability the tests have gotten more accurate over the years. 

When properly used by considering the context of the student experience, opportunities and other achievements, admissions tests lead to accurate and fair decisions.

Although standardized testing has improved in accuracy through the years they are not a very well put together a representation of educational achievements. 

 A more logical solution in my opinion is to create a better system for students and teachers. Make the tests more accurate and the idea behind standardized tests less stressful.

Along with measuring more educational achievements through more personal questions.