Standardized testing should remain in our schools.
Awesome question, I accept your challenge!
I look forward on debating this complex topic with you.
Good luck to you too!
Alright, let's go.
I am assuming when you talk of "our schools" you mean US schools, correct?
Therefore I will be basing my argumentation on the US school system.
Sadly, Standardized testing is one of the cornerstones of present day US schooling. Administered generally by the state, such as the Regents examinations in NY, they are a overall assessment of a subject such as chemistry.
Most states have these, or comparable, examinations, which nearly always have a direct impact on the students grade. This already creates a problem due to these reasons.
Also, due for it being a one time assessment, individual growth is not considered. A teacher may have helped a student grow tremendously over the year, but the student still fails to score proficient. Adequate yearly progress (http://teaching.about.com...) which is part of the No child Left Behind project, focuses soly on that one grade.
Due to the test having a major impact on the students grade, teachers are pressured to teach to the test, under a strict curriculum that doesn't allow room for creativity on the teachers and the students part.
Furthermore, Standardized tests are not an accurate examination of a students skill level. A recent study showed that colleges barred students from attending their college if they had a SAT score of under 700, stating that these students would not be able to complete college work. But on the contrary, of these students 86% actually exxeled at their college freshmens year work.
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has said “State assessments in mathematics and English often fail to capture the full spectrum of what students know and can do. Students, parents, and educators know there is much more to a sound education than picking the right answer on a multiple-choice question.”
So when even the Secretary of Education admits state assements are not working, clearly something is wrong, and standardized tests have to be lessened, ore even completely removed.
Okay continuing on, you said, "it creates stress in students." I'm not going to lie, it does stress you out, I am still speaking at a students point of view. But most students don't get themselves so nervous that they get sick or have a panic attack. The reason for that is because they know that it does not count as a grade. And this kind of serious test taking can prepare them for later in life. Moving on, like you said, "teachers teach to the test," you are also correct. Teachers also know, walking into their job, that they will have to have that pressure on them at some point. It's just a part of the job. Standardized testing also sees where more materials need to be taught. For example, let's say that you are in middle school, and your math teacher never taught your class pre-algebra. Then your class gets the test and does not understand it. The school systems are able to openly view where they need to teach more of.
(Why, Thank you. I haven't seen many of our age group on here that can argument as well as you do.)
Alright, Rebuttal. Or rather rebuttal of the rebuttal.
"You said, "it creates stress in students.""
I mentioned this to further support my stand that a one day test can not accurately display a students skill. (For further reading http://edge.ascd.org...)
" The reason for that is because they know that it does not count as a grade."
Actually most standardized tests count as test grades. For example, the Regents in NY I was referring to count as 1\5 of your overall grade for that class. And Pro says it doesn't count? And the grades are also required to graduate. (For further reading http://en.wikipedia.org...). And of course the SAT and ACT. While those tests don't count as a test grade per se, they do have a huge influence on what colleges you can go to, and what job opportunities you are going to get. (For further reading http://en.wikipedia.org... and http://en.wikipedia.org...)
"Teachers also know, walking into their job, that they will have to have that pressure on them at some point. It's just a part of the job."
Of course teachers have to succumb to pressure, but that doesn't mean it should be constantly lingering. (For further reading http://everydaylife.globalpost.com...)
"Standardized testing also sees where more materials need to be taught." But if standardized tests count as a grade, that grade will obviously reflect what you have learned and what you didn't learn. Diagnostic tests would be much more helpful for that. (For further reading http://classroom.synonym.com...)
Lastly, there is a major problem with these tests being mostly made up of Multiple choice. The U.S. is the only economically advanced nation to rely heavily on multiple-choice tests. Other nations use performance-based assessment to evaluate students on the basis of real work such as essays, projects and activities. Ironically, because these nations do not focus on teaching to multiple-choice and short-answer tests, they score higher on international exams.
Overall, having standardized testing in our school systems are more beneficial than bad. Let's recap, the cost is low, it prepares students for higher level testing, helps school systems need to see where they need to teach more of, helps compare different school's grades, sees where each student is at individually, and does help prepare the students for some jobs later on. My question to you is, "If standardized testing is mostly beneficial, then why should it be banned?"
Other than that, that wraps up my part of this debate and I am looking forward to your argument as well.
(It was very nice debating with you, in fact, I am having this debate for real at my middle school tommorow, so thanks for helping me prepare :)
Alright, wrap up.
Standardized testing fails at assessing every one's knowledge to full extend due to the lack of open answer questions, which has been proven to be the ideal way to asses knowledge.
Standardized testing favors and rewards proficient students (scholarships when you get a perfect SAT score) and discriminates and punishes students under proficiency (getting put into special ed programs, not getting into colleges that they wish to attend).
Standardized testing is riducously expensive (http://www.huffingtonpost.com...), and that money could go towards much better programs that actually improve the education provided in schools.
So my question to you is, if it is proven not to truly asses a students knowledge, if it barres lower scoring students from succeeding in life, and if it cost an absolute absurd amount of money every year, money that could be better spend on other projects, why do we still have standardized tests?
(Good luck on your debate, good idea of doing this on here before you have the real debate, that way you can really see your opponents viewpoint and main arguments, and you can fine tune your own argument. I will see you around!)