Friday, February 3, 2012

Testing for Intelligence

Until now, I was unsure of my beliefs and/or opinion regarding children being accessed in school for intelligence. Now that I have done my research on it I really find that it's necessary and has many benefits for both the children, the child's parents, and for the teachers. As everything else, I also believe it has some cons but I feel the pros outweigh the cons. Different types of testing is used in many different aspects of society such as driving, for business, and for education. There are several different types of assessments for young children. These include: Informal tests, formal tests, paper-pencil tests, performance tests, traditional assessments, authentic assessments, and standardized testing along with teacher-develop assessments. In most cases, standardized testing is given in the classroom. Assessments serve many purposes. Some of the purposes are: They guide instructional decision making, promote learning, promote self-regulation, determine what students have learned, and diagnose learning and performance problems.

Some of the pros of children being assessed are: Allows the students to set goals, it assesses students strengths and weaknesses, enables teachers to make better decisions in the classroom when it comes to their students, it's consistent and reliable, and assessments are conducted to serve as a way to report to parents, learn about the children and be aware of what they know and need to work on academically,  discovers how children change over time, helps teachers know what children are interested in and in what areas they are having difficulty. Some of the cons of children being assessed are students with poor writing/thinking skills may be at a disadvantage, it can decrease learning, it forces educators to prepare students for tests, and consistency of grading may be a problem.

When it comes to children being assessed I feel it's important that specific things are measured. I feel that children should be measured/assessed socially (How they interact with others), what they know (Their knowledge) their strengths and weaknesses, comprehension, and behavior/personality. If children were assessed based on how well they interact others teachers and parents can see if a child is behind in speech/language and if so they can get the child some help while they are still young. They can see if the child shows any signs of being anti-social, shy, or even outgoing. Knowing what the children knows is important for teachers and parents. This will allow the teachers to better understand their students and to create lesson plans each week. If the teacher is able to see in what areas the child excels in and what their weaknesses are, they will be able to help them work on those things. I feel it's very important for a child's behavior to be assessed just because a child's behavior tells a lot about the type of person they are and what is going on in their home life. It speaks high volumes for children who are not social and don't like to talk about things that are going on in their life. 

How are school-aged children assessed in other parts of the world? In England-their primary school system revealed that their children are now the most tested in the world. "Assessment in England, compared to our other reviewed countries, is pervasive, highly consequential, and taken by officialdom and the public more generally to portray objectively the actual quality of primary education in schools," their report concluded." (Cassidy, 2008) Many children in England were suffering from stress when it came to being assessed or tested. Primary schools in France focus on basic skills and are often used to assess a child's french grammar and spelling. At about eight years old, every child is given a national test of basic skills. The main reason for this test is to check the standard of the school. "Most primary schools have internal tests, or contrĂ´les, in maths, French, geography and history, and English at the end of each of the five short terms that make up a school year. A child who is struggling can be asked to redoubler, or go down a year. A brilliant child can sauter, or go up." (Cassidy, 2008)

 A lot of what I learn is from other people and I always enjoy hearing others opinions on specific topics, especially important topics like this one. I asked a few friends of mine who are mothers their opinion on standardized testing and I thought their opinions were very interesting. I want to share their opinions with you.

"I don't believe those standardized tests are effective & instead a waste of time. Why? Because students don't usually care how they do & teachers only dothem because they are told they must do them to get government funding for their schools. Furthermore, time is wasted on studying for those tests instead of better use of time actually teaching students skills they will actually use in the real world beyond the educational arena. They tell the kids to be unique, then tell them to standardize themselves to this test & dress alike at commencement. How is that being unique???" (Ann Hampton, 2012)

"Needs more data than just one test! It is too much pressure on students & teachers. I just don't think it's an accurate reflection on the students' knowledge." (Roxanne Rheinscheld, 2012)
"Stacy, because of these tests I put my kids in a private school!!!" (Lysa Williams, 2012)

"How many standardized kids do you know?" (Tanya Rapavi, 2012) 

Out of these four mothers, not one of them agreed or was for standardized testing. I found that quite interesting!


Cassidy, S. (2008, February 08). Our children tested to destruction. Retrieved from