Plato's Argument Against Standardized Testing

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Introduction A frantic student gazes up at the clock, noting the nondescript posters covering almost every inch of the bulletin board. With five minutes to spare, the student hurriedly flips over the testing packet to the first page and begins checking over her work a second time. When time is called, the student sighs in relief, knowing that she has finished her last standardized test and is done with testing for the year. Or is she? While the test itself may be complete, its impacts have only begun. If she fails, she may be required to retake the year. Unknown to the student, her scores will likely be plugged into a complex statistical analysis which will be used to determine state performance, and potentially impact her school and teacher. …show more content…

According to Plato, reason, and the capability to think, is the highest quality a human can possess. In the Allegory of the Charioteer, Plato claims, “every soul of man has in the way of nature beheld true being.” However, due to a focus on earthly matters or other factors, “all souls do not easily recall the things of the other world.” For him, striving to be rational and thus reach the World of Forms was the purpose, or telos. To achieve this end, Plato believed that education was essential. Through teaching capable students to be more rational, and thus closed to the true forms of Good and Just, they would contribute positively to the improvement of …show more content…

In identifying why these standardized tests exist, the hope is to generate a metric which will be used to analyze whether the current standardized testing system is sufficient and identify both areas of strength and weakness. The ultimate hope is to answer the question, “What is the purpose of state-mandated standardized tests for public elementary and middle schools, and how well to they fulfill this purpose,” and by doing so, improve standardized

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