Do International Test Scores Matter?

So. Again. Consider test scores — we’re creating test-takers because we emphasize and focus on passing those tests. We want critical and creative thinkers, and that takes time in conversation and debate, not focus on posted objectives and scripted curriculums to pass a test.

As they commenters say, “When will we ever learn…” — learn that learning is thinking — it is a process practiced and evolving, not objective-ized and paced.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Readers of this blog know that I have repeatedly argued that standardized scores on international tests predict nothing about the future.

Now comes an article in Forbes–Forbes!–saying that the international scores don’t mean much.

Scott Gillum quotes sources such as Sir Ken Robinson, Carol Dweck, and Yong Zhao to argue that what matters most–creativity, originality, initiative–is not captured by standardized tests.

He concludes:

“The U.S. has had a long tradition (and culture) of producing rule-breakers, game-changers and out-of-the-box thinkers — not easily measured in the form of test scores, but better captured in optimism, perseverance and innovation. Perhaps being “average” is the right result to ensure that we are not, as Robinson would say, “educating people out of their creativity.”

Anyone who seriously believes that the test scores of 15-year-old students in Estonia, Latvia, and other small countries puts our nation at risk cannot be taken seriously. Our competitive edge…

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