Standardized Tests; The SAT andACT

Topics: Standardized test, Education, Norm-referenced test Pages: 2 (437 words) Published: January 16, 2014
The SAT and ACT, both standardized test scores used as an indicator of students’ academic abilities, are taken each year by thousands of students planning to enroll in some category of post-secondary education. These are thought to be accurate indicators of a student’s academic ability, but this is not always true. I feel that more often than not, these tests are rough indicators of a student’s ability. They test what the student SHOULD know, rather than what courses, and the depth of said courses, a school offers that every individual student has taken, and these tests aren’t indicators of achievements or abilities in areas other than Writing, Math, and Reading Comprehension.

A student’s academic ability should be based on more in depth questions, rather than an impersonalized standard and label placed upon the shoulders of each student as he or she begins their high school “career”. However, these tests do generalize education in a way that relates more to a student’s ability to take an evident amount of given knowledge and put it into a practical use. At times, these tests are more of a “common-sense” tester, than anything else.

Since they are called standardized tests, I can’t really criticize them for doing their job. Simply on the basis of their intended purpose, these tests can give a somewhat accurate idea of how much a student is capable of, but I feel the tests need to be standardize based on each individual school, more than each specific state. Every school has different teachers, and styles of teaching. You can only be generalized in so many ways.

However, I do believe that the ACT and SAT are less generalized in the reading and writing portions when compared to mathematics. The reading and writing areas do contain a basis of knowledge that I feel may be more in depth than what the average student knows at times. There are vocabulary words that, for most students in high school, would require a nice look into a dictionary. There are...
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