First, I'd like to welcome Dan back to the list. Your opinions never fail to stimulate thought, and your well-formed rebuttals likewise.
I'm afraid though, that I cannot agree with your position on standardized tests. It calls to mind a distinction made in the Standards, that between useful knowledge and powerful knowledge. I can see limited circumstances when a standardized test might prove a useful exercise - such as forcing a class to study (and this will only work if they are scared of the consequences of not studying by a whole range of other factors which must be set up in advance) or attempting to create a real-world analogy to a time when they might be asked to perform under high stress, but I can see nothing lasting or powerful about that type of exercise, unless it is the power that is exertyed over them by the teacher.
I have to agree with Karen Dee Michalowicz that standardized tests really only measure an ability to take standardized tests. And since we haven't yet done a formal study, here's the testimony of one former calculus student (albeit more like 15 years later, not the 1 or 2 Tad suggested): I studied one year of calculus in college. I got a B one semester, and an A the next. I do not remember even one iota of it at the present time. I still do well on standardized tests, though!
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