Standardized Tests: A Necessary Comparison Tool - Essay Sample

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1292 Words
Date:  2023-03-13


The standardized test refers to forms of test that require learners to attend to the selection of questions in a similar manner. The standardized testing makes it possible for the examiners or the educators to make a comparison in the relative performance of the learners or different groups of students. Although different types of assessments and tests may be standardized following diverse criterions, the term is mostly associated with the large scale assessments given to the large population of learners. In most cases, they include multiple-choice questions that are administered to the eighth grade students in public schools in a given state. Besides the common multiple-choice questions, the standardized tests can sometimes take format of short answer questions, true or false questions, a mix of questions type, and essay questions. Traditionally, the standardized tests were presented or administered on papers; however, with the growth in technology, they are currently offered via online platforms through computer networks. With more research on curriculum development, there are a lot of debates on standardized testing; many educators or experts believe that they are objective and fair methods of evaluating academic accomplishment among students since they reduce chances of favoritism, subjective evaluation, and biases. While educators believe that standardized tests are the best methods of assessing students, they cannot improve the level of education in America.

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Standardized testing does not improve education in America. Sometimes the tests do not take into consideration every concept that teachers know about their students. The main aim of education is to improve skills and level of competency among the learners. Improving the level of education means that students or learners can achieve open-mindedness and abstract thinking in different fields (Croft et al. 23). Standardized tests are not based on the competency of the students. In other words, the assessments do not take into consideration the wider skills that an individual may possess. The above forms of testing, therefore, do not improve the level of education and aptitude among the learners. Hence, it is essential for the United States government, department of education, to end the century of standardized testing and instead focus on assisting young people in concentrating on the works that may enhance their proficiency in areas of interest. Through standardized testing, prompt selection of students cannot be guaranteed since many students with practical skills will be left out (Kubiszyn, Tom, and Gary 31). The test cannot provide the correct measure for the ability of a student; it only exposes the learners to the theoretical aspect of assessment where creativity is compromised. The standardized testing should, therefore, be abolished and replaced by a more elaborate assessment where the students can be allowed to express their practical and creative skills and through this, institutions of learning, as well as the governmental organizations, will be able to create a suitable environment for learners to achieve their academic goals.

Standardized testing may lower the spirit and motivation to the learning processes among the learners, a scenario that may have adverse effects on the overall education standards in the United States. For the students who give their full effort, getting lower grades in standardized testing than expected may lower expectations and overall attitude towards education. Thus they may fail to focus on their areas of specialization (Popham 21). Also, the time taken in the academic calendar to administer and mark the tests can be used to engage learners in other meaningful learning processes, including undertaking practical skills and competency-based practices that may broaden their skill and in general improve the education standards in the United States. Also, students normally possess different abilities in the learning process; standardized testing does always take these skills into consideration (Delgado, Richard, and Jean 23). The standardized testing can, therefore, mislead the students or learners; it may also mislead the leaning institutions when selecting pupils or students for various courses. When selecting the learners for various academic fields, it is necessary to understand the ability of the student and the capability of handling the task required in the learning process; the standardized testing does not always provide the opportunity for the teachers to understand the practical aspect of the learners (Spores 35). The standardized tests should be modeled to conform to the class works.

Many times, the educationists or the policy-makers use the results as a measure in the distribution of resources to improve the education standards. In other words, lower-performing institutions may be given more resources including teachers and more learning materials, without understanding the fact that highly skilled individuals and those with practical skills may fail in the standardized testing. The above case may adversely impact the attainment of quality education in the United States of America (Taylor, Kate, and Motoko 19). In general, standardized tests are not reliable; they cannot accurately measure the level of understanding of the students. On the other hand, through these tests teachers are not able to gauge the ability of the students and how well they can teach different subjects. In most cases, students normally have the desire to be absorbed into different learning areas; they therefore engage in practices that can enable them pass standardized exams. The standardized tests always have the same questions which when repeated several times, students can pass without having any skill or creativity; they would only engage in memorizing the answers or the multiple-choice questions that are put in place by the test organizers.

Usually, educators use test results to gauge the students and improve overall performance. In other words, they use these tests to find areas of weaknesses and invest the resources required to enhance education in the entire United States. The use of standardized tests to gauge students continues to become meaningless since they do not involves topics or areas that have been taught or covered in class. On the other hand, teachers are not allowed to find out what students got wrong, and this hinders the improvement in the learning styles (Ravitch, Diane, and Alfie Kohn 17). Besides, the testing regime is destroying the education system. In most cases, the process is driven by politicians who believe that standardized testing makes students smarter.


In conclusion, standardized tests do not always give feedback on how to perform better once the students fail to pass. The assessments do no often involve practical reasoning, and the students cannot identify the root cause of their failures when they do not qualify to attain the required grades. The tests are therefore unrealizable; they do not give learners opportunities to learn. The purposes of the tests are always to gauge the learner's ability to perform different tasks; they are also meant to show the weaknesses and strengths in the understanding of different concepts in the academic field. The standardized test does not fulfill the above role, and instead, they leave the learners in a dilemma situation. They might pass the test but still fail to understand their contribution they can also fail the test and still fail to understand the root cause of their failures.

Works Cited

Croft, Sheryl J., Mari Ann Roberts, and Vera L. Stenhouse. "The perfect storm of education reform: High-stakes testing and teacher evaluation." Social Justice 42.1 (2016): 70.

Delgado, Richard, and Jean Stefancic. Critical Race Theory: An Introduction. New York: New York University Press, 2011. Print.

Kubiszyn, Tom, and Gary Borich. Educational testing and measurement. John Wiley & Sons Incorporated, 2015.

Popham, W. James. "Why standardized tests don't measure educational quality." Educational leadership 56 (2013): 8-16.

Ravitch, Diane, and Alfie Kohn. More than a score: The new uprising against high-stakes testing. Haymarket Books, 2014.

Spores, John M. Clinician's Guide to Psychological Assessment and Testing: With Forms and Templates for Effective Practice. New York: Springer Pub. Company, 2012. Internet resource.

Taylor, Kate, and Motoko Rich. "Teachers' unions fight standardized testing, and find diverse allies." The New York Times (2015).

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Standardized Tests: A Necessary Comparison Tool - Essay Sample. (2023, Mar 13). Retrieved from

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