Editorial: Standardized testing fails to reflect student abilities

Makayla Mais, Editor-In-Chief

   Every year, thousands of students register for the ACT standardized test to complete their college applications. Many colleges require ACT scores so the colleges can better predict a student’s success during their college years, and will require the ACT or SAT before granting admission to their schools. These tests, however, do not always accurately predict how a student will perform in college.

 So much emphasis is given to one timed test, putting a lot of pressure on students and might prove as a barrier for college if a student in intimidated by the high stakes of the exam.

  According to “Do Standardized Tests Show an Accurate View of Students’ Abilities?” by Concordia Online, standardized tests play a major role in his education, whether they are achievement tests measuring subject-specific knowledge or aptitude tests measuring scholastic readiness.

  In the article “What’s Wrong With Standardized Tests?” by Fairtest: The National Center for Fair and Open Testing, tests such as the ACT or SAT do not measure the ability to think deeply or creatively in any of the subjects tested.

    Students can stay focused on their grades, and focus on having a perfect composite score, but according to “Do ACT Scores Predict Success?” by PrepScholar, a study found negligible differences (an average of .05 points) in cumulative GPA in college between two groups despite large differences in test scores. However, the GPAs of these students in college did correlate strongly with their high school GPAs.

  There are many other ways to evaluate a student’s performance during school, according to “What’s Wrong With Standardized Tests?” by Fairtest: The National Center for Fair and Open Testing. Good teacher observation, documentation of student work, and performance-based assessment involve the direct evaluation of real learning tasks. These can provide useful materials for teachers, parents and the public.

  The ACT and SAT may be able to measure your abilities inside the classroom, however, neither one measures motivation or social readiness.

  Some students can spend hours trying to earn the best GPA, win the ultimate title of valedictorian, and even get a near-perfect score on the ACT and struggle with the social factor of college. Most tests don’t measure your abilities to do well, or show how motivated you are to succeed in life. Don’t let one test score effect how you run the rest of your life.