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A's on the rise in U.S. report cards, but SATs flounder

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Replies to: A's on the rise in U.S. report cards, but SATs flounder

  • HRS1861HRS1861 Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    TL;DR there is basically no solution.

    The poor and minorities have, on average, lower standardized test scores, hence the objection towards it. That being said, it is one of the few objective measures out there, and unfortunately if a student can have a better quality of education, they will inevitably score higher on a single standard applied to everyone. I feel like this is the same anywhere across the board - the wealthier you are the higher chance you have to succeed.

    If there are tests of intrinsic ability - say something like admissions test for the universities of Oxford and Cambridge instead, it could potentially better control for class/race differences. Even then, if a student is wealthy, goes to a top private school and is nurtured in critical thinking and testtaking, they'll still do better.

    I also want to note that poor childhood nutrition and education could affect IQ scores, which could in turn affect standardized test performance.

    Of course, we can get rid of standardized tests. Then of course, we have as the article states, grade inflation. How can an admissions officer tell an A from one school to another? Some schools are deflated, others inflated.

    There is really no good solution that works for everyone. You can either have a single standard that inevitably benefits the rich because of better opportunities+schooling or remove any semblance of objectivity from college admissions.
  • AlumonAlumon Registered User Posts: 44 Junior Member
    "There is really no good solution that works for everyone."

    Just because you or I cannot see a solution now doesn't mean that there isn't a solution.

  • HRS1861HRS1861 Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    We can spend hours talking about hypotheticals, and sure, there might be a solution down the line. What I stated, and what I'm trying to state is that as things currently stand, standardized tests are the only objective measure available to colleges, but many complain about the test being unfair to the poor and minorities. As things CURRENTLY stand, unless we can fill two mutually exclusive demands (with basically all standardized tests hurting the poor and minorities), we will never have a solution for all stakeholders in this issue.
  • sunnyschoolsunnyschool Registered User Posts: 531 Member
    edited August 24
    There is data showing that colleges take lower score ranges for certain racial / ethnic groups than other groups.
    The test is fair and objective. Anyone who wants to do better can use a variety of free resources, which are just as good as those you pay for (ie, Khan Academy or self-studying from SAT book vs. attending a prep class).
  • HRS1861HRS1861 Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    edited August 24
    Therein lies the problem - poor kids and minorities are held to a lower standard for testing, hence removing the entire point of these tests - standardization.

    On any measure of academic ability, on average, the poor and minorities (with the exception of Asians and Jews) score poorer. What this suggests is that on average, they are less academically competent. Believe it or not, Khan Academy, books and expensive prep classes can only help so much - if a kid goes to an inner city school or a dilapidated schoolhouse in Appalachia, they are bound to have a lower quality of education. That will translate into testing, because prep materials cannot alone teach the various skills tested. It can be difficult, unless done consistently in class, to improve skills like reading comprehension and certain mathematical techniques.

    In sum, sure the testing is objective, I'm not disputing that. However, as long as there is a large group of people who want racially equal results, and another group that wants standardization, you'll never reach a consensus.
  • sunnyschoolsunnyschool Registered User Posts: 531 Member
    But then, if the academic measures are lower for certain ethnic/income groups, then they are less prepared for college level education, which is what the SAT purports to measure. Who do you want building the bridge or designing airplanes...the 700 math SAT or the 500?
  • HRS1861HRS1861 Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    I think we are in agreement. I never contested what you are saying.
  • sunnyschoolsunnyschool Registered User Posts: 531 Member
    Agree to Agree! :)
  • msdynamite85msdynamite85 Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    I think that the government should hire a strong social media programmer like mark zuckerberg to create a round the clock online learning community that would aim to provide the poor and minority students a structured study plan and encouragement and motivation that wealthier children benefit from.

    For example set a group of poor 4th grade African American boys a goal of reading one story book a week but create an online book club where once a week they just log on and then talk about what they read with other kids their age plus an older leader who is trained to challenge their comprehension and critical thinking skills.
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