The School: Part 3 Testing

October 29, 2007 at 3:15 am Leave a comment

The TestMy favorite target..Testing.

OH! How I have come to hate testing!!!



Testing can be a very useful tool in helping diagnosis student learning problems. Testing coupled with classroom teacher observations make a good indication of how a student is progressing. Testing can be used to measure the effectiveness of a new program or method. Testing in its place as a diagnostic tool is extremely useful in the learning process.


What is testing and how does it fit in with the school? Schools are artificial forums designed to help pupils learn. The process of helping kids learn is called teaching. Teaching involves three processes: Planning, Execution and Assessment. In time we will take up each of these aspects of education. Teaching occurs on three level: State, Local and Classroom. A fourth level is being pushed today more than at any other time: National. All that said, we are focusing in one topic Assessment.


Assessment is “a method of evaluating student performance and attainment.” Evaluating means “to consider or examine something in order to judge its value, quality, importance, extent, or condition.” Teachers are constantly assessing pupils and methods as a routine of their teaching skills. It is part of what makes a good teacher. All of us are familiar with Teacher testing: essay questions, multiple guess, true and false, fill in the blank, short answer, and practical exams. Assessment should be authentic, reliable and valid. Teacher constructed tests offer the best assessment of learning. Teachers are aware of what learning is expected in the classroom. Teachers know their pupils. There are individuals who cannot perform very well on multiple choice questions. When asked verbally, the pupil responds as a scholar. Recent research has shown that students learn in different ways. Effective teachers react according. Good teachers use a variety of methods to help students learn. Assessment needs also to be authentic and evaluate the actual process to be learned. And good teachers need to use a variety of assessments just as he does methods.


Testing is a regular routine in a teacher’s program. Teachers use standards to construct lessons. Lessons involve a plan in which the standards are converted to objectives which are attainable. Methods to achieve the objectives are designed to provide a variety of learning paths for the accomplishment of the objectives. In order to identify if the student has achieved the objective, the teacher uses an assessment or assessments to determine success. The teacher plans a lesson, executes the plan and then evaluates the plan. Testing is one of the assessments used by teachers to determine the achievement of the pupils and the effectiveness of the plan. 


All readers of this blog have a classroom teacher to thank. Reading is a primary school task and as the neophyte reader progresses he or she are assessed both by tests and observation. This is how tests should be used. In some cases it is a benefit to compare pupil achievement to a broader group of pupils at the same level. The standardized test is ideal for this. The test can then be analyzed illustrating strong and weak points in a pupils education. Schools, teachers and parents can use this information to improve student, teacher or school problems. Unfortunately today’s standardized tests are used to punish and not improve.


All in the name of Accountability.




Entry filed under: school.

The School: Part 2 The Rules Accountability: A side issue

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October 2007
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