The Tests Don’t Work

How relevant are graduation exams, those tests students in many states must take to get their diploma, to things like the job prospects of graduates and and their learning?

Not much according to research to be published later this spring.

A study by the university’s Rob Warren and University of California researcher Eric Grodsky said they could not find any benefit to making kids pass a test to get a high school diploma.Warren said the tests in Minnesota and 22 other states do not show a measurable difference in learning, and do not pay off in the job market.

I’d love the see the details but, of course, that’s just one piece of research.

And it completely flies in the face of the dozen and dozen of other studies showing that standardized tests are the greatest teaching tool ever invented.

1 Comments The Tests Don’t Work

  1. Dave

    People are reading way too much into this study, and each time I see it reported, the findings are worded more strongly. All this study actually says (or all that’s consistent from report to report) is that students who don’t pass the exit exam end up in a less positive situation, on average, than those who do.

    Well, duh. If a student doesn’t have the high school-level skills to pass an exit exam, they don’t graduate, and if they don’t get a diploma, they’re in a worse situation. Asking for any other way is social promotion, giving diplomas to students who don’t have the skills expected of a high school graduate.

    What the study fails to address is whether society would be better off or worse off without the high school diploma as a somewhat standard indicator of a student’s skills.

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