Instigator / Con
0
1500
rating
4
debates
25.0%
won
Topic
#4238

Standardized tests should be abolished

Status
Finished

The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

Winner & statistics
Winner
0
1

After 1 vote and with 1 point ahead, the winner is...

Bella3sp
Parameters
Publication date
Last updated date
Type
Standard
Number of rounds
3
Time for argument
Two days
Max argument characters
10,000
Voting period
Two weeks
Point system
Winner selection
Voting system
Open
Contender / Pro
1
1524
rating
51
debates
75.49%
won
Description

No information

Round 1
Con
#1
I believe that standardized tests shouldn't be abolished and these are my reasons as to why I believe this: 
1. Standardized tests are a great tool to gauge how much knowledge some one has or how well they know certain skills

2. Standardized tests can help parents and educators to understand where someone is at in terms of learning and skills.

3. Standardized tests give learning and enrichment opportunities for students. 

4. Standardized tests encourage critical thinking and many other skills to be used.
Pro
#2
Forfeited
Round 2
Con
#3
I will wait for the pro to respond to my first argument. 
Pro
#4
Thanks Waltuh,

Preamble:
With the little amount of time did you think I was gonna forfeit again? Well, as you can see, i'm not. 20 minutes on the dot!

I will be defending the point that standardized tests should be abolished. This will be supported by four topics. 

Burden of Proof:
The BoP is shared. 

Pro argues that standardized tests should be abolished. 
Con argues that standardized tests should not be abolished. 

Definitions:

: to end the observance or effect of (something, such as a law) : to completely do away with (something) : ANNUL
This definition is provided from Merriam-Webster, if you want anything added or changed, feel free to ask. 

1. Stress
Stress has to be one of my major points. I've done multiple different tests, some even musically. There have been times when I was a kid I freaked out and messed everything up, my solo, my opportunity. Sigh.. 

One of the most problematic aspects of a standardized test is the intense stress and dread that many students experience when it comes to testing, leading them to not do as well because of test-taking anxiety or pressure. Students know that taking these tests could shape the rest of their future, which puts a lot of pressure on them to test well. As a result of the stress and anxiety, the test scores may not truly reflect their abilities. (1)

2. Unfairness
Money, money, money... 

I would say money revolves around everything and anything. This does apply with standardized tests but also different things. Different things such as going into a university, smarter individuals are denied while the rich are granted an opportunity in college.

There are so many examples of the rich having more advantages in situations but it is also seen in education. The advantages are unfair and end up affecting the difference between students. If you have the money, you can even get special tutors that will help you do well on a test. If you don’t have the money, and your school is in a low socio-economic area that gets less funding than rich suburban schools, then you’re not getting the same preparation for the test as those at the higher socio-economic levels do. (2)

3. Inaccurate
Straight forward, standardized tests are inaccurate. Theres no reason for something that's inaccurate, that causes much 'harm', is there?

Standardized tests don't actually provide accurate results.  Students cheat on standardized tests for many different reasons. As said from Carnegie Mellon University, "Some students might cheat because they have poor study skills that prevent them from keeping up with the material. Students are more likely to cheat or plagiarize if the assessment is very high-stakes or if they have low expectations of success due to perceived lack of ability or test anxiety." (3) 

4. Diversity difference
Diversity is everywhere, in almost if not every school. Everyone is different, not the same as another. We shouldn't treat everyone like they must or are the same. This is a major problem with standardized tests, they treat everyone identically.  

In other words, "Standardized tests don’t value diversity. There are a wide range of differences in the people who take standardized tests: they have different cultural backgrounds, different levels of proficiency in the English language, different learning and thinking styles, different family backgrounds, different past experiences. And yet the standardized test treats them as if they were all identical; identical to the group that took the test several years ago, and to which the test has been “normed” (e.g. this original group is the “norm group” against which any future test-takers are to be compared)." (4)

Rebuttals:
1. Standardized tests are a great tool to gauge how much knowledge some one has or how well they know certain skills
This isn't always true. Some, in fact many students cheat on the tests or even go to lengths of using drugs.  

2. Standardized tests can help parents and educators to understand where someone is at in terms of learning and skills.
This one also related to my response for your first claim. "This isn't always true. This isn't always true. Some, in fact many students cheat on the tests or even go to lengths of using drugs. " 

That said, without standardized tests you can see the areas where someone is needing help. This can be seen when students are having trouble answering the questions, questions on a packet, worksheet, or anything of those sorts. 

Research says going on an empty stomach can affect learning. Breakfast is a said to be the most important, especially with school aged students. Going on an empty stomach their cognitive performance. (5) What does this mean? Its test day, and I don't eat breakfast, and it affects my capability to reach my potential. No longer is it accurate. What if i'm sick? Many parents don't allow children to stay home while sick, i'm sick and I have a headache. This would also affect your ability to take a test. Not so accurate. 

3. Standardized tests give learning and enrichment opportunities for students. 
Tests don't usually give someone more knowledge in a topic. 
Downside: It could affect opportunities. 

Further, why do you think teachers are in classrooms? Not just to give out standardized tests, but to teach the students. Students learn more from teaching than standardized tests. Thats if standardized tests even help the student learn. 

4. Standardized tests encourage critical thinking and many other skills to be used.
Many other skills, like?

Critical thinking can be encouraged in other ways such as: 
  1. Ask questions. 
  2. Encourage decision-making. 
  3. Work in groups. 
  4. Incorporate different points of view.
  5. Connect different ideas.
  6. Inspire creativity. 
  7. Brainstorm. (6)
Conclusion:
- Increases stress
- Unfairness
- Inaccurate 
- Diversity limitations 
- Therefore, standardized tests should be abolished. 

Sources:

----

My apologizes for the last rounds forfeit.

Round 3
Con
#5
My finishing arguments:

1. Standardized tests can motivate students as they're competing with other people and instills healthy completion which is a important skill. 

2. Standardized tests are unambiguous and clear cut which makes it easy to understand and track

3. Due to standardized tests not exclusively pertaining to a specific place or education board it gives everyone a chance to better their future and do well. 

4. Standardized tests help school's find good teachers who properly teach their class and those who understand not too just do test prep but also thoroughly explain and explore concepts.

5. Standardized tests provide unbiased grading and provides reason behind every question as teacher grading can be uneven and biased.

6. Standardized tests encourage students to study and set up important skills for future years.

7. Standardized tests can hold school's accountable and see which areas averages are poorer and need more educational reinforcements.

Rebuttals:

1. While standardized can cause stress they are also shown to be sources of motivation, patience, and perseverance.

2. Even if you're rich and can pay for higher  education if you don't pay attention and don't put in effort it doesn't matter. Many school's have free clubs such as math club and teachers can also tutor. If someone puts in more effort they could surpass someone with money.

3. Students can cheat on anything and not just tests. Additionally they can ask for help if they feel like they're struggling and are under stress.

4. While yes standardized tests do restrict diversity, they provide an accurate and consistent assessment of students instead of being greatly varied and inconsistent.

Pro
#6
Voters, be sure to check the bottom of this argument. I have a question.

Preamble:
I'll be extending and disproving my opponent's responses. 

I'm not actually sure why con made more arguments in the last round but alright, glad I have the final response. 

Extend all arguments. 

1. Stress
Extend. He never denies it and in fact agrees. While has does say it can provide motivation, patience, and perseverance, this doesn't respond to my claim and is something of a different topic. 

2. Unfairness
Extend. He doesn't really disprove my entire claim.

3. Inaccurate
Extend. Pro admits that students can cheat on tests and never denies the test is inaccurate. 

4. Diversity 
Extend. Pro concedes that standardized tests do restrict diversity. 

My defense is after my rebuttals.

Definition:
No complaints from con.

Rebuttals:
1. Standardized tests can motivate students as they're competing with other people and instills healthy completion which is a important skill. 
Competing with other students? People are put down because they have lower scores than others. If they did compete, this could wear them out. Once again, they can get test anxiety failing the test and also because of a bet they made with their friends. Another example is if someone made artwork, they were quite proud of themselves. However, they look online at other artworks and feel less than the other artists. They feel they aren't enough. This also applies if you know the favorite child dynamic. One has a perfect score, one hundred percent on their test but you only got ninety five percent, you might feel like a failure, a disappointment.

Downside: can promote unhealthy completion.

2. Standardized tests are unambiguous and clear cut which makes it easy to understand and track
Unambiguous to whom? If it's the students, why would we need a standardized test if it's easy to understand?

 Either way, I feel this argument is irrelevant. This doesn't prove why it should stay.

3. Due to standardized tests not exclusively pertaining to a specific place or education board it gives everyone a chance to better their future and do well. 
I'm sorry, what? I'm a bit confused.
You state, "and do well", anyone can do well in their life without getting the standards on standardized testing.

Downside: gives everyone the chance to damage their future.

4. Standardized tests help school's find good teachers who properly teach their class and those who understand not too just do test prep but also thoroughly explain and explore concepts.
There are no such things as prep tests, as far as I know. These would most likely be called "quizzes". If you had prep tests back in schooling (or currently), I believe it would be the same as quizzes.

But, wow! You gave me an idea.. thanks! 

Quizzes are actually a great way of knowing who needs help in what subjects and reducing stress. Quizzes actually test their intelligence and review the same topic they have been working on for the quarter, semester, etc. Quizzes don't greatly affect someone's opportunity or future, they just see what students know. They don't even grade the student. Students are less likely to be stressed on a quiz that doesn't affect or grade them. This shows the teacher what specifically needs to work on for the majority of students and also select students. 

5. Standardized tests provide unbiased grading and provides reason behind every question as teacher grading can be uneven and biased.
I didn't really want to get into biased grading.

I'll make this short. I have character limitations.

"The most prevalent problem of these tests is their inherent bias towards minority groups since their inception. These minority groups have historically scored lower on standardized tests than white people, and it is not due to any difference in intelligence." (1)

Repeat: Either way, I feel this argument is irrelevant. This doesn't prove why it should stay.

6. Standardized tests encourage students to study and set up important skills for future years.
Many students won't study. Based on experience, I know this. I am a procrastinator. This debate is proof of that. I waited till the last minute to post an argument, that I didn't even get to post.

Homework is an alternative for studying, even though many students dislike the idea of homework. There are also sometimes rewards as a motivator such as extra credit. I doubt a lot of students will want homework, but again, an alternative. You don't even get negative outcomes such as affecting major opportunities. 

What 'important skills'? You don't mention any such skills or important for that matter.

7. Standardized tests can hold school's accountable and see which areas averages are poorer and need more educational reinforcements.
Some students are just slower or not as educated in that topic, it doesn't mean it's the teachers or schools fault. The teachers and the school are held accountable with other things, not just standardized tests.

Also, other things like quizzes, packets, classwork, etc.. are ways to figure out which areas need support for select or groups of students. 

---

Defending my points:
1. While standardized can cause stress they are also shown to be sources of motivation, patience, and perseverance.
Like I said, extend. He states "While standardized *tests* can cause stress* which means he concedes they cause stress.  He never counters this, in fact, he makes a new claim when he rebuttals. 

Imagine this, i'm sitting in my seat for hours, do I really have patience for this test? 
Imagine this, i'm sitting in my seat for hours, i'm tired, I had no sleep last night, do I really have motivation for this test?
Imagine this, i'm sitting in my seat for hours, i'm just done with this test and I stop working the entire remainder. Am I really persevering? 

2. Even if you're rich and can pay for higher  education if you don't pay attention and don't put in effort it doesn't matter. Many school's have free clubs such as math club and teachers can also tutor. If someone puts in more effort they could surpass someone with money.
Extend.

I think con is missing the point, and I still feel like I can extend this. He hasn't disproved anything. That said, the test is not based off what you learn in class.. even with that, trying to learn something on your own is hard, and having someone there to teach you who knows or has experienced the test can extremely help.

I would also like to bring in, "Most of us can learn how to do something simple on our own with just a set of instructions. However, to learn about something more complex, it's always best to have a teacher. Teachers bring with them varied and useful backgrounds. They've been trained to teach individuals in different ways depending on their style."  (I somehow can't find the link, i'll update in comments, 2).

Further..

"Standardized tests used in college admissions, such as the ACT and SAT, also are inherently classist. Children whose parents have a higher socioeconomic status are more likely to pay for tutors in order to improve their scores. Several paid programs promise to improve SAT scores by over 200 points or guarantee a score of 1500+, an option that is not available for low-income families" (3)

3. Students can cheat on anything and not just tests. Additionally they can ask for help if they feel like they're struggling and are under stress.
Extend.

Fair enough. However, my point was they are inaccurate in regards to measuring someone's intelligence meaning there's no need for them. They also can't ask for help during the test even if they're struggling.

After this part of my defense, I have another piece supporting my topic: "There are many factors that can go into a negative test score, one of the main ones being testing anxiety. Tests bring out anxiety in even the best students. A student under a lot of stress won’t be able to perform at their best. A test score cannot produce an accurate reading of educational achievement. Tests can’t measure even a portion of education and the intelligence inside of a student."

4. While yes standardized tests do restrict diversity, they provide an accurate and consistent assessment of students instead of being greatly varied and inconsistent.
Extend, like I said. He concedes to my point, "while yes standardized tests do restrict diversity", then they continue making a whole new point.

My topic three actually disproves the 'accuracy'. I'll further this, "there are many factors that can go into a negative test score, one of the main ones being testing anxiety. Tests bring out anxiety in even the best students. A student under a lot of stress won’t be able to perform at their best. A test score cannot produce an accurate reading of educational achievement. Tests can’t measure even a portion of education and the intelligence inside of a student." (4)

Conclusion:
Pro hasn't made much effort towards my topics, he drops multiple. 
- Increases stress
- Unfairness
- Inaccurate 
- Diversity limitations 
- Therefore, standardized tests should be abolished. 

Sources:
Comments. Running out of characters. 80 left.

-- 
Did you catch my mistake? I made a mistake in one of my topics, honestly one that could've quickly took it out within a sentence or two. Can you find it, Waltuh? Can you find it voters? I was expecting you to poke some holes into it but I guess not. Can voters use this against me? Nope. You never mentioned or disproved the topic based off of it, therefore it won't be used against me. At least as far as I know, it won't. If you can't find it, feel free to hit me up.

-- 

This is why I don't particularly like Winners Selection. People can just say anything without it being true or backed up.

Maybe my worst debate in terms of a lacking debate.
That said, thank you for allowing me to participate. 

Vote Pro.