standardized tests

What about standardized tests?
from youth (via Suli Breaks):
measurable outcomes least
part of interview series via Graham Brown-Martin – Ken Robinson on testing:
no one is the same. no little boxes please.
jan 2015 – Noam Chomsky on the dangers of standardized testing:
it’s turning us into individuals that devote our lives to achieving a rank
economic man – rationally calculates what do to to increase your wealth, maximize # of goods that you have.. because that’s what you can measure.. improve your human capital.. what you can sell on the market.. what kind of human being is that?…  the ones who don’t develop those characteristic are considered behavior problems.. et al..
these aren’t just ideas.. but a huge industry… massive.. starts with infants..
Latest on the common core.. you decide..what about them?
[disclaimer: it took me 2 minutes to go to our district site, find this. i’m not fishing. broad daylight. yet – in the clouds of assumption/compulsion.]
cc essential
[graphic links to page talking about just common core]
And a little experiment via Aaron in Providence – having adults take tests.
And an insightful post on huffington post – college board fails the test
And Zoe Morris – not taking test
standards of access
We have been viewing content as fixed, as definable. It’s been our measure of success for some time now. The web has opened up the world to us, it’s showing/teaching/restoring a more natural state of being. Specifically, it’s clarifying the difference between a pyramid and a network. It’s showing us that content is too big to know. [Weinberger] The web is helping us see that we were made for so much more than content. That allegiance to content is in fact – keeping us mediocre rather than breathtaking.
pyramid network

content is variable
*Standardized tests on content are no longer viable. Not only no longer viable, but often times inhibitive. For whatever reasons, more and more universities no longer require them for admission , will no longer accept AP as credit. Entire high schools are boycotting standardized tests. Perhaps it’s the overwhelming evidence of the destruction standardization has brought upon the human spirit. Yong Zhao has been researching one such standardized test, the PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment), the test we use to compare countries. Yong has found that students who score high on math, on the PISA, score low in creativity, entrepreneurialship, and happiness.

As hard as it might be to believe, perhaps the near future will be more about a non-linear portfolio and credentialing via community. Standardizing, while crimping out style, is also crimping the style of the places we are trying to get into, with those test scores. As a society, we have figured out how to do well on standardized tests. We’ve learned to cheat as a means of survival, we’ve learned to memorize as a means of getting by. We’ve gotten really good at it. But is that the it we want to be?

Eric Mazur shares his research/insight on AP testing, how he’d rather students came with a hunger, and a sense about, what you do when you don’t know what to do, ie: how you learn, than a 5 on an AP Physics test. In his research, students coming into Harvard with a 5 aren’t doing as well as kids who haven’t taken the AP test/course. Perhaps, evidence that we have gotten good at scoring high on tests. Perhaps, evidence that that isn’t the point.

process is fixed
The web allows for personalization,
which provides the optimal learning space,
making personal learning networks a viable standard for public education.

We need to remove the old means of assessing a student, a teacher, a school, a district, ……
standardized tests.
[note that tests as we know them are generally trashed after the fact… they are noun. 21st cent assessment needs to be verb… or we’re assessing the wrong thing. assessment from latin means – to sit beside.]


Now that we’ve built an industrial solution for teaching in bulk, we’ve seduced ourselves into believing that the only thing that can be taught is the way to get high SAT scores. We shouldn’t be buying this. – Icarus Deception


a act be


For more insight.. Nikhil Goyal’s One Size Does Not Fit All is a high recommend.

one size

We need to start asking if the way we have always done things, (you get this job if you have this paper of proof), is still our optimal strategy. aka – maybe we’re wrong.  Yong Zhao has much to say on the potential of our wrongness on standardized testing.

We’re imagining/prototyping/crafting a non-linear portfolio as perhaps as an alternative to standardized testing..
a self-assessment, done everyday. Where the focus is on living, the evidences are just a hidden/transparent trail.

on opting out:

@FairTestOffice: AERO is pleased to announce a cooperative program w/Fairtest – spaces for opting out:


links on moneys and tests:

exploration over results

ravitch et al


It is as true now as it was then that no matter what tests show, very little of what is taught in school is learned, very little of what is learned is remembered, and very little of what is remembered is used. The things we learn, remember, and use are the things we seek out or meet in the daily, serious, nonschool parts of our lives.John Holt


We should get rid of the SAT as fast as we can. Look, there are bigger problems in society. This is not the biggest problem we have. But it’s so easy to get rid of it. Right? Just pull the plug.

 – John Katzman founder of The Princeton Review,1981, initially teaching SAT preparation to high-school students in New York City. 


seat time and test scores


coming soon via Nikhil:

One month, hours of interviews, and 7,065 words later, the first draft of my exposé of college admissions and how we can transform the process is finished.
Beautiful cover of my upcoming white-paper More Than a Number: Reinventing College Admissions. Foreword by Robert Schaeffer of FairTest.Courtesy of Androo Aquino.

nikhil whitepaper 

post by Anya – testing of 2014:

opt out of tests


on denver opt out 2014

organized non-compliance

florida parents outrage 2014


standardized seat time – seems all we can measure..

From the 1876 report to the US education commissioner. “there is no absolute standard of quality”

Original Tweet:

what about standardized tests


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