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Rex Boggs

Posts: 80
Registered: 12/6/04
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Posted: Sep 6, 1995 9:11 AM
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Cindy Chapman wrote:

> I have to admit I don't mind at all the idea of a decent
>test BASED ON WHAT IS TAUGHT and one that teachers actually TEACH
>for. It's like the Olympics--the coaches know exactly what
>is going to be judged and so do the athletes. That's exactly
>what they do--prepare for the "test"
>Cindy Chapman Chapman@apsicc.aps.edu

Cindy, I disagree. I mind very much teaching content and skills that I feel
are not preparing students for much more than 'the test'. Unfortunately the
things in mathematics that can be most easily assessed on a standardised
test are not the most important things that are worth assessing.

I have spent a number of years preparing students for standarised tests
where I knew quite precisely what content could be assessed. In my opinion
this situation is sub-optimal. Admittedly, such a test sets clear goals for
the students and the teachers - but at a cost. Without a standarised test -
if I am wildly excited by the Mandelbrot Set, I can mold my unit on complex
numbers to include it. With a standardised test - I may mention it in
passing. Which is better teaching?


Rex Boggs | High above the hushed crowd,
rex@cq-pan.cqu.edu.au | Rex tried to remain focused.
| Still, he couldn't shake one
Glenmore High School | nagging thought: He was an
Rockhampton, Quensland | old dog and this was a new
Australia | trick - Gary Larson

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