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ERIC Number: ED120255
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1975-Dec-19
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Standardized Tests: Are They Worth the Costs?
Herndon, Terry
In this address to the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, the Executive Director of the National Education Association (NEA) outlines the Association's objections to standardized tests. First, the interpretations of tests are usually based on several fallacious assumptions about education. For example, to say that a skill can be tested implies that it can be explicitly defined and measured with simple means. Measuring the status of simple skills is a very complex process-entirely too complex for the most involved standardized test to measure. The second objection is that standardized tests forster big brotherism. The universal imposition of the test nearly mandates that the test's assumptions become the learning objective for each child no matter how inadequate or impossible they might be. They intimidate students and coerce teachers. Thirdly, standardized testing encourages conformity at the expense of creativity. In a system geared to the norm, the only child to benefit is the absolutely average child. NEA's fourth objection to standardized tests is simply that they do not do what they claim to do--improve allocation of resources to needs, help parents evaluate schools and evaluate teacher performance. Standardized tests accomplish none of these purposes; they are even counter-productive to several. (RC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A