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The Contender
Con (against)
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Standardized testing is hurting our school population and community

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/17/2015 Category: Education
Updated: 11 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 397 times Debate No: 82702
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (1)
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The increase in standardized testing over the last few years has been harmful to students, staff, and the community at large. Students have been exposed to mandated state testing, district testing, and everyday curricular tests given by the teacher to assess acquisition of skills. According to Cox (2015) "Increased pressure on students has resulted in more test-taking anxiety. Sleeplessness, loss of self-esteem secondary to poor performance and lifelong mental blocks can be seen in individual children" (p. 1). Parents are also affected when the children come home from school feeling frustrated or exhausted from days of testing. With the mounting pressure for high performance on these tests, teachers have changed their teaching approach to focus more on test preparation than educating the whole child. Lastly the community has been forced to take on the burden of standardized testing as well. Many schools, especially large inner city schools, have had to totally revamp their technology infrastructure to accommodate the thousands of children that need to be tested each year.

Cox, E. (2015, November 16).Author, A. A. (Year, Month Day). Standardized Tests Making our Students Sick?. Us News and World Report. Retrieved from


I believe that standardised testing is beneficial to students.

Indeed, there will be an added amount of pressure and stress, but I believe that this helps them propel them forward toward striving for success. Stress is an important catalyst in one's motivation to work and if wisely wielded, can be a powerful tool in the advancement of education hence it is not necessarily a bad thing.

Standardised testing is a means for a government to know where it stand in terms of further educational and holistic development and is also highly useful in education analysis. Without standardised testing, it will not be known if the students of a certain level are performing up to par, and without the proper Intel to make due changes and altercations to the education system, this can be dangerous for a country to be grooming substandard future population which would inevitably hinder society and have drastic implications on the work force.

For example, in Singapore, there are standardised tests that occur twice each year on the average in primary, secondary schools and even junior college. These tests give the schools and government information on the amount of resources that should be diverted toward education sector, whether the Budget should increase or decrease, and also gives insight on the effectiveness ok current curriculum and providing incentive for change or improvement. Standardised testing has proved to be extremely beneficial to Singapore, and it is one of the most educationally advanced and successful countries in the education sector that many other countries tend to go on a pilgrimage for.
Debate Round No. 1


While I do agree with you that stress is not always a bad thing and can lead to results. I must question the practice of putting 8 year old children under such stress or children with disabilities that do not know how to handle themselves when in stressful situations. While I believe many adults have coping mechanisms to handle stress, I do not believe that children have the tools to deal with a stressful situation that they may feel they can not escape. With the emphasis being placed on test scores, teachers do not have time or room in the curriculum to teach those coping skills.

I also understand that there needs to be a way to assess students in order to show growth and areas of deficit, however I believe that there is an over reliance on standardized tests. A standardized test is a snapshot of how a student is achieving on a particular day at a particular time. It does not take into account a student's physical or emotional state at the time of testing. In addition, standardized tests do not reflect other areas of growth such as emotional growth.

In addition, if the government is requiring this testing, they should be funding schools so that they have the resources needed to administer the tests.

In summary, I believe there is an over emphasis on standardized testing and I think schools should use standardized tests as a piece of the puzzle rather than the end all be all way to assess students.


I do agree that in large quantities, stress can indeed seem overwhelming to children who do not necessarily have the coping mechanism and mental maturity to deal with such stress. It is important to note that however, children are not completely independent like adults and have others to turn to in event of too much stress such as teachers, peers, parents, or even the school counsellor. Children with disabilities are often given greater berth in standardised tests and they are often provided with extra time, extra resources, to help them cope with their disadvantages. Stress from standardised testing helps to push children to be the best they can be, creating an air of competitiveness in education which will ultimately provide incentive to children to excel academically.

It is also vital to be aware that standardised testing does not always place an inherent focus on test scores. Some standardised tests are not always weighted or graded, and not all systems place emphasis on test scores purely. Holistic education is key to providing children with a healthy, well-rounded and quality education.

I also understand that standardised testing only shows the progress of students at a certain point in time, which is why it is important in the application of standardised testing that students are testing at regular periods of time throughout their education career. For example, quarterly, bi-annually, termly, etc. This will help to reflect growth of students in terms of academic competence. Contrary to belief, such standardised testing can be tailored to show the maturity of students, mental, emotional development by incorporating questions require a more development or mature view point such as questions for opinion, debate, or discussion, which will help to depict the emotional growth of a student.

I do agree also that governments should increase funding for standardised testing as this will prove to be ultimately beneficial in setting up new education policies, to drive the education sector to a whole new level.

In summary, I believe standardised testing is an immensely invaluable tool and that it should be implemented regularly at regular interval time periods and throughout the education levels, to provide optimal results, and I think this will prove to be a catalyst in the growth of education.
Debate Round No. 2
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by whiteflame 11 months ago
>Reported vote: Hunts// Mod action: Removed<

2 points to Pro (Sources). Reasons for voting decision: Con failed to use sources so pro got the win on that.

[*Reason for removal*] Having more sources alone does not justify allocating conduct points. The voter needs to explain how the sources provided contributed to the debate, not simply state that they existed as a reason to allocate these points.
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