The Instigator
gasparpina
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Trainfan10
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

Are Standardized tests a fair and objective measure of student achievement?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/26/2015 Category: Education
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,713 times Debate No: 70741
Debate Rounds (3)
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gasparpina

Con

Standardized tests are neither fair nor objective, that their use promotes a narrow curriculum and drill-like "teaching to the test," and that excessive testing undermines America's ability to produce innovators and critical thinkers.
Trainfan10

Pro

Standardized tests, while imperfect, are the fairest and most objective way to grade students performance. curriculum is often wide, and teaching to the test does not happen often, especially the higher in grade you go. as courses begin to be taken off state tests, and onto their own End of course exams, the tests become even more subjective. while tests are not perfect, we cannot create a personalized test for every single student, making standardized testing the best way of ranking students against their peers. As shown in http://bostonreview.net..., the main beneficiaries of standardized testing are lower income students that go to poorer schools, as it shows these students, their parents, and their schools, what their weaknesses are early on, and provides a basis for comparison against the state, or the country, instead of just the school.
Debate Round No. 1
gasparpina

Con

Standardized testing has not improved student achievement. After No Child Left Behind (NCLB) passed in 2002, the US slipped from 18th in the world in math on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) to 31st place in 2009, with a similar drop in science and no change in reading. On May 26, 2011, National Research Council report found no evidence test-based incentive programs are working: "Despite using them for several decades, policymakers and educators do not yet know how to use test-based incentives to consistently generate positive effects on achievement and to improve education."
Standardized tests are an unreliable measure of student performance. A 2001 study published by the Brookings Institution found that 50-80% of year-over-year test score improvements were temporary and "caused by fluctuations that had nothing to do with long-term changes in learning..."
Standardized tests are unfair and discriminatory against non-English speakers and students with special needs. English language learners take tests in English before they have mastered the language. Special education students take the same tests as other children, receiving few of the accommodations usually provided to them as part of their Individualized Education Plans.
Standardized tests measure only a small portion of what makes education meaningful. According to late education researcher Gerald W. Bracey, PhD, qualities that standardized tests cannot measure include "creativity, critical thinking, resilience, motivation, persistence, curiosity, endurance, reliability, enthusiasm, empathy, self-awareness, self-discipline, leadership, civic-mindedness, courage, compassion, resourcefulness, sense of beauty, sense of wonder, honesty, integrity." R32;
Trainfan10

Pro

Trainfan10 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
gasparpina

Con

gasparpina forfeited this round.
Trainfan10

Pro

Trainfan10 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
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