The Instigator
Pro (for)
3 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
6 Points

Should America Get Rid of Standardized Testing in Schools?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/16/2015 Category: Education
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 458 times Debate No: 81036
Debate Rounds (1)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)




Educators spend more time teaching the 'core classes' (Maths, Sciences, Social Studies, English) and de-emphasize the arts (Theatre, Art, dance, etc.). If I wanted to be a Chef, why on earth do I need to know the quadratic formula? 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 cannot measure creativity, motivation, persistence, curiosity, endurance, reliability, enthusiasm, empathy, leadership, courage, compassion, resourcefulness, honesty, integrity, which is many of the things required to have a good paying job, which is difficult to find nowadays. These tests cause a lot of stress on students. I've seen people get sick just thinking about how much this affects their future, how much time they have to use up to study.

Some students don't take these tests seriously, because they don't affect their GPA. An English teacher at New Mexico's Valley High School said in Aug. 2004 that many juniors just "had fun" with the tests, making patterns when filling in the answer bubbles: "Christmas tree designs were popular. So were battleships and hearts." I love learning, don't get me wrong, learning is fun. What isn't fun is when i have to write a 10 page essay on how social media affects how people act. It's not fun when I have to study for 3 hours, and do more homework so I can pass a history test with a B+. I love learning, but I hate the stress it brings me.


The function of standardized testing is multifold.

1) It forces all schools to teach to a minimum standard. This can show some teachers that their lessons are too basic and others that perhaps their lessons are too advanced.

2) It serves as the great equalizer in admissions. Your GPA will be largely influenced by the school you went to. Some schools give out easy A's, others make you really work for it. It is unrealistic to expect all colleges to know the rigor of all high schools when deciding who to interview and admit. A standardized test like the SAT will at least give colleges something that is uniform to compare students. This is even more important in medical school. It is very easy to find a college with massive grade inflation or use review sites to find professors that give easy A's. The MCAT is what will level the playing field such that medical schools will give a closer look to someone who has a high MCAT and only a mediocre GPA such as a 3.5. That student might have gone to a grade deflating school and the disparity between the MCAT and his GPA would alert medical schools to this. On the flip side, a student with a 4.0 and a terrible MCAT score almost certainly had his grades massively inflated, so it prevents people from "gaming" admissions.

On to your Arguments:
-High school, and even college, students change their minds many times as to what they want out of life. Pushing you to not limit yourself is a good thing.
-Your application can contain extracurricular activities and letters of recommendation to reflect your list of things standardized tests do not reflect.
-Life is hard and college isn't going to be any easier, get used to it.
Debate Round No. 1
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by WarDraco101 10 months ago
I would also like to add onto Meropenem's comment and say that even though SAT has and is considered a standardized test, many students don't take it, so Con actually has to ability to ignore it, because it is not relevant to this debate
Posted by Meropenem777 1 year ago
I think there are other angles besides the issues that Pro talked about concerning SAT.

For one, students who have SAT tutors and tiger parents who prompt them to study for the SAT as a routine will certainly have the advantage over students who did not. They are basically studying everything they learned in school again and again in order to study for one test, and afterwards they will likely forget the material or it will not be utilized as much in life in terms of what they may major in. Applicants might get accepted into ivy-league schools for studying so hard, and then again, might not at all if they did not do so well on the SAT even though they had studied more than their peers.

I don't particularly like the testing system that was created for colleges because it endorses "parrot" learning, but I do not see any alternatives .

Like Con said, life is tough, but if someone wants to become a chef, then they do not need to do so well on the SAT to be one. All they have to do to become a good chef is have good cooking skills and experience. Employers most often will value experience in certain fields over other qualities.

People should realize they have nothing to fear if what they want to do is already in their grasp.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Bosoxfaninla 1 year ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con had a much better argument however he did counter the affirmative's case so I gave conduct to the pro merrily because he did not get the chance to respond.
Vote Placed by AtkinsonCameron 1 year ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con showed the effect of standardized testing on curriculum selection and how curriculum selection and adaption is the basis for learning. Pro did not address this.