Sunday, January 23, 2011

NY Times, testing, and SQ3R

We knew the Washington Post was in the  Broad Boys' Testocracy Club. They have a vested interest--Kaplan pays their bills.

The New York Times has joined in the Hypocrisy Testocracy with just plain bad reporting. Read "To Really Learn, Quit Studying and Take a Test."

Yes, if you read a brief passage, then make yourself try to recall it, you retain the information better. There are various forms of this--I like SQ3R (survey, question, read, recite, and review), but there are many variations on the theme.

Really, next time invest the $15 it takes to get the whole article.

Or just ask one of us. We used to be professionals.


Anonymous said...

oh our district just tells the students they can take tests over and over and over again. Multiple choice. How many guesses do you need, really?
I told students they could retake tests, but they have to show me all the work written out on the entire test they had returned - yes, even the ones they got right. I found that practice improves skill, but you won't see it reflected in the data, because nobody's looking.

doyle said...

Dear Anonymous,

Given the tech we have today and the gazillions of questions out there, retaking tests may not be such a bad idea at the classroom level for some kids.

Once for-profit companies grab them, though, things get curly. Study Island, for instance, has huge test banks (not necessarily evil) but focuses on the data collection--again, not intrinsically bad, but gets creepy when every teacher and every admin can see how every student (and every teacher) is doing in every class.

In the old days, answering questions as you went along fell under the category of guided reading.