Daria B.

"All students can learn and succeed, but not all on the same day, in the same way."(William G. Spady) Imagine a world without the American College Testing Exam (ACT) or the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). According to Mr. Abbott, Education Reformer,a standardized test is any form of test that requires all test takers to answer the same questions and is scored in a “standard” manner. Both the ACT and SAT are standardized tests that are put in place to determine the "knowledge", or lack thereof, of students in core subject areas and weigh heavily on college admission decisions and scholarship eligibility. 

The world would be better off without standardized testing because not only are these tests arduous, they place too much pressure on students, cause some to commit suicide, can result in students being awarded less scholarship money and denied college admission.

Although standardized tests are given to students on the same days during the same time frame with the same questions, it is not set up to give each student an equal chance to succeed. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, at the U.S. National Library of Medicine, the average attention span of a human being is 8 seconds.Standardized tests such as the SAT and the ACT can last anywhere from 3 hours and 45 minutes to 4 hours which is 30x-55x the average attention span. Not only are standardized tests strenuous, they require students to be almost superhuman by exerting taxing energy to stay focused. 

Standardized testing places too much stress and pressure on students. In 2000, the U.S. Census reported 3,998 suicides for children ages 15 to 24. Thirteen years later, in 2013 4,741.5 young adults ages 15 to 24—a huge increase of 18.9 percent since 2000—committed suicide. 39.1% of these suicides were believed to be caused by pressure and stress to score well on a standardized test or perform well in school. Is the pressure or stress put on students, by college averages and minimums, to over achieve on standardized tests worth their lives?

Although some colleges say they have “holistic review”, no matter how holistic they may claim to be, the ACT or SAT score of a student plays a huge role in whether or not they’re accepted. Standardized tests not only poorly affect students when it comes to being admitted to their school of choice, but it also affects how much scholarship money they receive. For instance, even if a student has a 3.6 GPA and a 20 on the ACT, a 20 being a “lower” score may result in them being denied acceptance. Also, at majority of colleges, in order to be granted a full ride scholarship, students must have high ACT/SAT scores no matter their GPA which isn’t fair. If it wasn't for the standardized testing scores, students who work hard to maintain a high GPA would be afforded a full ride scholarship. 

The world would be a brighter and better place for students if standardized testing was never invented.