Use Crowbar, Ace Test

Use Crowbar, Ace Test

Gamers have an advantage when it comes to taking college entrance exams.

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Being from Australia i find the SAT system absolutely abhorent. But still, it's what you have over there for now, so you have to work with it.

I applaud you on your choice of teaching tools and thoroughly agree that the problem solving skills involved in gaming are a force to be reckoned with in all aspects of life.

Thanks for a good read.

One of the reasons I do so well in IQ tests is pretty much covered here, I don't give up. I actually do attribute that to gaming in many ways, one of the first things you learn is that there's always a way, you just have to see it from the developer's point of view. One of the second things you learn is there's normally a trick the developer missed but that's not always something to bet on.
Anyway, persistence and the ability to look at problems from all the different angles are pretty much the best skills I know of for these kinds of tests. I much prefer them to knowledge tests since they test your reasoning more than recall but that's another matter. Nice article.

I'm so glad to hear that there are educators who know the SAT and tests like them are a sham.

I never actually took the SAT, managed to dodge it with my choice of schools. But I did take its nearly indistinguishable grad school counterpart, the GRE, twice. It was hard to study for that thing and not get pissed that I was spending a hundred-something dollars on a test that had nothing to do with how prepared I was for graduate study. At least, for the sciences anyway. For law school it might not be so bad, because the skill that helps you ace the GRE most is the ability to recognize misleading language.

Math, as practiced in graduate level sciences, is not timed. Nor is it done without a calculator. And if you use language like the GRE does in the sciences, it's usually because you're a fraud talking to the media about your neat free energy discovery, or about how global warming isn't a thing.

I know that admissions committees need a way to weed out lots of candidates, but there's got to be a better way, certainly better than just having students feed money to the scam artists at ETS.

CJ Hayes:
Use Crowbar, Ace Test

Gamers have an advantage when it comes to taking college entrance exams.

Read Full Article

As a teacher myself, I'm glad to see articles like this.

Too many people freak out about tests, and too many teachers get hung up on factual knowledge. Stepping back and viewing the PROCESS through different eyes can go a long way toward realizing it's just not that big a problem...

Students, on the whole, are woefully devoid of basic problem solving skills and strategies. They have knowledge, but they don't know fluently how to USE it. As an educator, I can say that this is an area in which the education system has failed the students. (Of course, it's not that we want to do it that way. It's that we have non-educators constantly looking over our shoulders, telling us to do it wrong or we're fired... Digression over.)

The same problem-solving mechanisms at work in gaming are at work in testing. The difference between games and tests is that games are "tests" that are designed to teach their own content. And good tests are, too. They're not a measure of how much you know, but how well you can use it.

For my part, I teach the other side of things: teaching students how to teach themselves. And I do it using another 'non-academic' area -- Band. Between teaching students to teach themselves and teaching them how to view tests simply as the application of skills, I think these "non-curricular" areas can really help turn the educational tide.

(Of course, I don't believe that either activity can take the place of education. It's the processes we need to borrow, not necessarily the content...)

One of the largest problems with these tests is the timed nature of them. When completing something on most games, you do not have a time limit. Persistence is the main reason for success in this world. No amount of school will teach you that because you are always under the clock in a school setting. There is far too much data pointing to the failures of standardized testing. Also, far too much data pointing the malleable state of intelligence and IQ. Einstein stated that the thing that made him achieve what he had was that he did not give up. JK Rowling rewrote the first book in the Harry Potter series after submitting it to many publishing houses, and the resubmitting the rewrites to more. Earnest Hemingway submitted The Old Man and the Sea to 29 different publishers before he got it published.

These tests are a plague to learning, and they prove nothing about intelligence or capabilities of people.

SAT was a fucking joke.

I took it cold, scored a 2010. It shows absolutely nothing in regards of ability to work, ability to communicate, or problem solving skills. It simply shows you know shit that anyone who is a native speaker of English and has passed algebra 1 should know.

McMullen:
I'm so glad to hear that there are educators who know the SAT and tests like them are a sham.

I never actually took the SAT, managed to dodge it with my choice of schools. But I did take its nearly indistinguishable grad school counterpart, the GRE, twice. It was hard to study for that thing and not get pissed that I was spending a hundred-something dollars on a test that had nothing to do with how prepared I was for graduate study. At least, for the sciences anyway. For law school it might not be so bad, because the skill that helps you ace the GRE most is the ability to recognize misleading language.

Math, as practiced in graduate level sciences, is not timed. Nor is it done without a calculator. And if you use language like the GRE does in the sciences, it's usually because you're a fraud talking to the media about your neat free energy discovery, or about how global warming isn't a thing.

I know that admissions committees need a way to weed out lots of candidates, but there's got to be a better way, certainly better than just having students feed money to the scam artists at ETS.

Well, I think what these tests come down to is that the US is a first world country where everyone is educated to some degree. We actually fare a lot better educationally and knowlege wise than a lot of academic comparisons with other countries give us credit for, for reasons I won't get into too heavily. Suffice it to say, when you look at nations that have huge, well developed cities with all the modern conveinences, alongside a majority population that work in sweatshops or live with their livestock (which is how SARS got started in China) they don't pull out the actual national average to represent their country in academic comparisons.

In the US our people are so smart, and so well educated on average, that we literally have people with degrees and huge amounts of academic knowlege living homeless in the streets, or working dead-end menial jobs that have nothing to do with what the person actually trained themselves to do.

We've kind of created an enviroment where just about anyone can re-gurgitate useful information on anything from Math, to History, to world knowlege. As a result tests have become tricks (as described in the article) to identify people who recognize systems and think outside the box. The USA is based around competition and we're at such a high level with so many educated people it's no longer about pure knowlege like it is in other parts of the world (even some with decent educational systems). There has to be some way to eliminate people, and universities increasingly want to weed people out, especially seeing as having graduates that do not go on to prestidious jobs don't wind up reflecting well on the school. Part of what makes the top schools, top schools, and where those graduates go, and increasinglt that can come from picking the right students rather than actually providing the best information.

It's not nice, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it a sham (as you did) as the testing exists to sort people out, and that isn't even really disguised, people who take these tests know EXACTLY what's at stake. It's just to the point where the sorting has evolved along with the realities of society. It's about gaming the system as described, because it's assumed anyone who got that far and is taking this test already has the basic skills, and simply cramming and spitting out what the school system provides to everyone provides nothing of value because of how common those skills are, and how anyone with a modicum of willpower can cram for a test.

Ah so I have my game skills to thank for a 1550 reading and math score, if only games had helped me at essay writing it would have been perfect. Jokes aside the only "difficult" thing in the SAT was getting up early on a saturday to take a 5 hour test.

Oh Canada, where we have no SATs...

Do well in grade 12 and you get into University. Makes it simple.

Therumancer:
Suffice it to say, when you look at nations that have huge, well developed cities with all the modern conveinences, alongside a majority population that work in sweatshops or live with their livestock (which is how SARS got started in China) they don't pull out the actual national average to represent their country in academic comparisons.

This is something I wish a lot more people realized. When many other countries report their test "averages," we're not getting the full picture. Depending on how their education system works, there may be many of the lower-performing students that aren't even in the same schools. And in quite a few of them, the lowest-performing students aren't given the test.

In the US, everyone takes the test. Everyone's score gets reported. The child with severe disabilities who is barely able to sit upright. The kid who can't spell his name without counting on his fingers somehow. The kid whose family just moved here from Korea, and only knows how to say, "Hello" and "What way bathroom?" We include them, and they're in there "pulling down" our average. And we report those scores because we are accountable for educating that child.

(Also, consider how many more English-as-a-second-language students we have in America. And the variety among them. If you get a non-native speaker in France, odds are he speaks German. If you get a non-native speaker in America, God only knows what the kid speaks... and you probably don't have a full-time translator for Cantonese on the payroll.)

You're also right about the value of the SAT -- it's used to sort the memorizers from the thinkers. If you've got someone who has learned how to THINK, you can TEACH them anything. If you've got someone who waits to be TAUGHT each discrete fact, you'll be spoonfeeding them forever. I've also found that the SAT grew exponentially in value when they finally included the written portion we've been begging them for, because now it also checks how well students can organize and express basic thoughts.

(Having had to grade undergraduate term papers from before and after that addition, I know I saw a big enough difference in just one year to tell me it's worthwhile.)

Therumancer:
snip

Good points. This is the first time I've heard that the US education system is not falling behind the rest of the developed world though, and everything from what I hear people on the street say to how they vote and what they say in polls, suggests that we are rather poorly educated on average, so I'm not sure that assumption is correct.

I agree that regurgitation and memorization should not avail students taking these tests. But I don't think deceptive language is the way to do it. I think a more appropriate challenge would be to have the questions focus on problem-solving; to have fewer questions but to make them take longer, with the correct method for finding a solution unspecified and not immediately obvious. That is a good test of scholastic ability. I don't see the value in the current method.

Baresark:
One of the largest problems with these tests is the timed nature of them. When completing something on most games, you do not have a time limit. Persistence is the main reason for success in this world. No amount of school will teach you that because you are always under the clock in a school setting.

It's a matter of practicality, I'm afraid. You can't give a kid forever to complete the test, because it has to be graded at some point. The time limits given for nearly all standardized tests are extremely generous. The problem is that we spend too much teaching testing strategies for particular test formats, rather than teaching kids to think it through -- which is useful on all formats of test (including "Real World").

There is far too much data pointing to the failures of standardized testing.

It depends on what you mean by "standardized testing." There are good tests and there are bad tests. "Standardized" simply means everyone takes the same test. It just so happens that most of those tests are in a "cued-recognition format" (Multiple choice, basically). And there's plenty of data that shows cued-recognition testing isn't a valid or useful measure of learning. That's not why we use it. We use it because it's cheap and easy to grade: Pop answer sheet into computer, ta-da. Sad, but true.

Einstein stated that the thing that made him achieve what he had was that he did not give up. JK Rowling rewrote the first book in the Harry Potter series after submitting it to many publishing houses, and the resubmitting the rewrites to more. Earnest Hemingway submitted The Old Man and the Sea to 29 different publishers before he got it published.

Persistence is certainly a major factor. And one that a lot of kids do not have nowadays. Really, it's because there are so many things for them to do, they are never forced to stick with something once it becomes unpleasant, or just not easy. And the parents let them quit, because they can't be bothered. The schools try to teach persistence, but the parents teach quitting.... and we (the education system) only account for about 12% of each child's life from birth to age 18.

But beyond persistence, there is an issue of craftsmanship. Hemingway, Einstein, Rowling, they studied and made adjustments. They collected data, interpreted it, and applied those findings to the next draft. They studied the works of others, imitated them, and through this began to craft their own voice over time. Of course, I'll also allow that you can achieve this craftsmanship without persistence, either.

These tests are a plague to learning, and they prove nothing about intelligence or capabilities of people.

They prove many things, and they can be useful. They just don't demonstrate the things we tend to claim they do, that's all. Now, those of us in the classroom? We know. But no one "on high" listens to us. We've let the businessmen run education, and they like costs small and results delivered in small, round numbers annually.

Tests are a measuring tool, and nothing more. Teachers use tests (whether a formal sit-down test, or casual questions throughout a class period) to not only find out what a student knows, but to find the cause of any misunderstandings, so that the student can be re-taught in a way that address those problems. And while the SAT board and the various state boards of education throw a single multiple choice test at us once per year, we as teachers are using this teach-test-reflect-adjust-teach cycle at least once per minute.

So if you're looking for good policy change, we're right there with you. Get the powers-that-be to let educators run education... (End tangent)

McMullen:

Therumancer:
snip

Good points. This is the first time I've heard that the US education system is not falling behind the rest of the developed world though, and everything from what I hear people on the street say to how they vote and what they say in polls, suggests that we are rather poorly educated on average, so I'm not sure that assumption is correct.

I agree that regurgitation and memorization should not avail students taking these tests. But I don't think deceptive language is the way to do it. I think a more appropriate challenge would be to have the questions focus on problem-solving; to have fewer questions but to make them take longer, with the correct method for finding a solution unspecified and not immediately obvious. That is a good test of scholastic ability. I don't see the value in the current method.

As I mentioned in my reply to the person you've quoted, the difference is in which students take the test and which students' scores are reported. In the US, everyone takes the test and everyone's score is reported. In other countries, they select who takes the test, which gives them an artificially favorable average. The data behind the claims about the US being so dreadfully behind? It's old data, and it's being used improperly.

Therumancer:

McMullen:
I'm so glad to hear that there are educators who know the SAT and tests like them are a sham.

I never actually took the SAT, managed to dodge it with my choice of schools. But I did take its nearly indistinguishable grad school counterpart, the GRE, twice. It was hard to study for that thing and not get pissed that I was spending a hundred-something dollars on a test that had nothing to do with how prepared I was for graduate study. At least, for the sciences anyway. For law school it might not be so bad, because the skill that helps you ace the GRE most is the ability to recognize misleading language.

Math, as practiced in graduate level sciences, is not timed. Nor is it done without a calculator. And if you use language like the GRE does in the sciences, it's usually because you're a fraud talking to the media about your neat free energy discovery, or about how global warming isn't a thing.

I know that admissions committees need a way to weed out lots of candidates, but there's got to be a better way, certainly better than just having students feed money to the scam artists at ETS.

Well, I think what these tests come down to is that the US is a first world country where everyone is educated to some degree. We actually fare a lot better educationally and knowlege wise than a lot of academic comparisons with other countries give us credit for, for reasons I won't get into too heavily. Suffice it to say, when you look at nations that have huge, well developed cities with all the modern conveinences, alongside a majority population that work in sweatshops or live with their livestock (which is how SARS got started in China) they don't pull out the actual national average to represent their country in academic comparisons.

In the US our people are so smart, and so well educated on average, that we literally have people with degrees and huge amounts of academic knowlege living homeless in the streets, or working dead-end menial jobs that have nothing to do with what the person actually trained themselves to do.

We've kind of created an enviroment where just about anyone can re-gurgitate useful information on anything from Math, to History, to world knowlege. As a result tests have become tricks (as described in the article) to identify people who recognize systems and think outside the box. The USA is based around competition and we're at such a high level with so many educated people it's no longer about pure knowlege like it is in other parts of the world (even some with decent educational systems). There has to be some way to eliminate people, and universities increasingly want to weed people out, especially seeing as having graduates that do not go on to prestidious jobs don't wind up reflecting well on the school. Part of what makes the top schools, top schools, and where those graduates go, and increasinglt that can come from picking the right students rather than actually providing the best information.

It's not nice, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it a sham (as you did) as the testing exists to sort people out, and that isn't even really disguised, people who take these tests know EXACTLY what's at stake. It's just to the point where the sorting has evolved along with the realities of society. It's about gaming the system as described, because it's assumed anyone who got that far and is taking this test already has the basic skills, and simply cramming and spitting out what the school system provides to everyone provides nothing of value because of how common those skills are, and how anyone with a modicum of willpower can cram for a test.

I'm with you to a degree but I'd still say that, in England at least, it is a sham. The tests we do before university don't in my experience test problem solving, knowledge application, thinking outside the box or other useful things. Instead they teach how to follow linear formulae concocted each year by teachers to achieve maximum marks. In many cases, they actually detract from education; many of my history lessons were spent not learning history but learning the exam. Again, I stress, not learning to think outside the box or bring new ideas to the table but how to write in a prescribed fashion within an arbitrary time limit to secure as many marks as possible. Even a single lesson devoted to such nonsense is, in my opinion, a colossal failure of the education system and what it values.

The SAT is a pretty bad indicator of how well you will do in Uni, but it's not that difficult. It does contain some really random algebra stuff that you need to be wary of and you need to learn to skim stories in order to save time. From what I understand, the writing section is scored mostly on length, and not on actual accuracy with regards to facts.

Dastardly:
As I mentioned in my reply to the person you've quoted, the difference is in which students take the test and which students' scores are reported. In the US, everyone takes the test and everyone's score is reported. In other countries, they select who takes the test, which gives them an artificially favorable average. The data behind the claims about the US being so dreadfully behind? It's old data, and it's being used improperly.

So you're trying to claim that America is the only country in the world who tests their students without bias? Yeah, I don't believe that.

You're claiming that all the developed nations of the world are purposely fudging their figures to get one up on each other? France? UK? Germany? The whole damn lot of them? And the only reason America's figures are failing compared to the majority of Europe is because they're the only ones playing fair?

Yeah, right...

Yeah, This pretty much explains why I never had to study for the SAT and still made it into college without writing an entrance exam. Same reason why I can pass math classes without trying. Take what you already know and make it fit the problem; Worked all the way up to Calc 3.

McMullen:

Therumancer:
snip

Good points. This is the first time I've heard that the US education system is not falling behind the rest of the developed world though, and everything from what I hear people on the street say to how they vote and what they say in polls, suggests that we are rather poorly educated on average, so I'm not sure that assumption is correct.

I agree that regurgitation and memorization should not avail students taking these tests. But I don't think deceptive language is the way to do it. I think a more appropriate challenge would be to have the questions focus on problem-solving; to have fewer questions but to make them take longer, with the correct method for finding a solution unspecified and not immediately obvious. That is a good test of scholastic ability. I don't see the value in the current method.

Ironically the more genuinely developed and englightened a modern nation is the more it criticizes itself and focuses on it's failings. The less developed a nation or culture the more likely it's going to focus on it's strong suits, and prove it's validity, while ignoring it's own flaws.

To put things into perspective, the US is politically polarized between Republicans and Democrats which are the two major philsophies governing the nation, and both absolute paragons of virtue and reason compared to the political forces present in many other nations, including some that are quite advanced. In the US this polarization has everyone pointing fingers at each other and screaming about how the other side are morons and uneducated. Look at say discussions about Obama on these forums and how anyone who supports or opposes him is treated by the other side... and this applies to just about every issue.

See, in general when you run into people going off about intelligence and education, you'll notice very few people will say that they themselves are ignorant or uneducated. Rather they wind up talking in terms pointing at everyone else, the masses that disagree with them and what their opinions happens to be.

Likewise people tend to be critical of the US for not being a utopia that meets their standards which a surprising amount of people see as a vague possibility if everyone else could "only see things the way I, and the people who agree with me do". What counts as a failure here is kind of ridiculous compared to the rest of the world. Sure we have unemployment, starvation, homelessness, and other things, but even with the recession we've fared a lot better than even other developed nations, yet it's generally not considered politic to speak about our strengths and benefits, or realize this. In the US any degree of patriotism or nationalism that isn't ironic like the "Team America" song is generally looked down on as the province of morons. Everyone talks about how everyone else is wrong for being mindlessly pro-US, when really this tends to amount to being critical of the US and anything about it is the only form of expression that winds up not being frowned upon.

Granted there ARE exceptions, but this is a trend that hasn't gone unnoticed, and it's even slipped into statistics by influacing those that compile them. Given that there is no shortage of other nations willing to blow their own horns and show their own competitive relevency, we wind up with a lot of bad information on things like our actual global standards in terms of education.

The US for all it's bellyaching doesn't tend to call other nations out very much. While it made the news we didn't do anything officially to China given the sham that was the Olympics hosted there and their participation in it. Needless to say when we won't take a harder line with things like that, we aren't going to do it with things like educational ratings... and yeah, a lot of it is as I pointed out that the lack of education actually helps validate everyone's perspective on everyone else. :)

My usual point is along these lines. We go off about how we've been behind China, India, and other nations in terms of education in things like science, math, etc... sometimes for decades, yet nobody bothers to pay attention to little things like how China is populated by all these sweatshop labourers and such that are kept ignorant so they can be controlled. The people who mangle themselves in garmet factories aren't exactly walking around with better grasps of science than your typical US student. With India we had that huge "Slumdog Millionaire" movie which was in part about the plight of masses of India, not to mention exposes on it and how some of these guys working in telephone farms and such are treated, or the millions of women forced into what amounts to sexual slavery, pimped out from early ages to service menial labourers, or how despite all pretensions the caste system still exists and how people from low castes are oftentimes treated like glorified slaves by the millions.

If you take someone from say China or India, they are going to produce the average of their ruling elite, from one of their huge, modern cities. Not an actual average which probably amounts to some sweatshop labourer or farm labourer who was never actually in their educational system... which is an important point, when dealing with nations that don't effectively provide education to everyone or even try to genuinely have a national standard for their entire population which arguably invalidates any comparison to the US.

The US has it's problems with poverty and such as well, but if you take your average public school student, and say put him up against your average kid running around alleyways in Bombay (and by this we don't mean an unusual case of an unrecognized prodigy they make movies about like the kid from Slumdog Millionaire) and guess who is likely to know more about say biology with microorganisms, or how a frog's biology works, or whatever else.

The fact that the US tries to educate everyone, even one of our failures, like say some Hillbilly out in a trailer, probably acrtually knows more than he gives himself credit for compared to say his equivilent from say China... you know, one of the guys who live with their livestock.

There might be a dozen countries that can even enter into competition with the US here because honestly, every nation that survives has a ruling elite, but not many actually try and educate their entire population never mind succeed at it to any extent. Until you do that, you don't belong in a comparison of national averages.

I'll be honest in also saying that if we took a lot of the US educated elite and put them up against some of the elite from other countries, there would be a lot of parity, since globallly speaking they tend to travel in the same circles. The end result would be that the elite are the elite for a reason, and that's pretty universal. Take say one of our bastard gaming CEOs like Bobby Kotick and put him up against one from a major Japanese company... if the universe doesn't implode from sheer sleaze I think you'd find a surprising amount of parity in actual capabiliies, knowlege, and similar things.

Likewise, as ironic as it is, if you pull some guy begging for change off the street in Beijing to one doing the same thing in Washington DC or New York City or whatever, the guy from the US might even wind up having a degree, where the dude from Beijing might not have ever seen a textbook in his life. A lot has been said about the sheer number of homeless people with massive levels of education in the US, with former computer engineers, managers, and even teachers unable to find work and being out of their homes.

Well, this is increasingly off topic, but that's my thoughts at any rate. I'm not saying the US is nessicarly the best, just that I think the criticisms of the US educational system are a joke. As I also pointed out, I think that the current state of the SAT can be defended given our educational level and the competitive nature of our society.

Maze1125:
So you're trying to claim that America is the only country in the world who tests their students without bias? Yeah, I don't believe that.

You're claiming that all the developed nations of the world are purposely fudging their figures to get one up on each other? France? UK? Germany? The whole damn lot of them? And the only reason America's figures are failing compared to the majority of Europe is because they're the only ones playing fair?

Yeah, right...

You've gravely misread.

I'm claiming that the US is one of the few developed nations in which every student takes the same test. In other countries, students are "tracked" early on -- for instance, look into Japan's high school system. It's neither good nor bad, it's just that different countries have different education systems.

We don't lock our students into tracks that early, meaning that "special ed" kids and "non-native English speaking" kids, as well as the high-, middle-, and low-performing "normal" students all take the same test. What's more, because of our "everyone must go to college" culture, we push the lot of them to take the SATs, too.

I think there's value in tracking students early on, as many students who ought not to go to college are being pushed there, wasting their time and everyone's money. But no one in the US wants to be the one to say, "No, Johnny, you're not college material." So that's not currently how we do it here.

Other countries? They do it, and they do it pretty early. That means, by and large, the students taking the test are the students who are best suited for that particular test. Otherwise, they wouldn't be in it.

Neither system is doing anything misleading. Neither is right or wrong. The problem is when we compare scores on a one-to-one basis. That is where the dishonesty (or perhaps just misunderstanding) comes into play. Not in either way of doing things, but in comparing them as though they were the same.

ASIDE:

For another comparison, it's like when people compare public and private schools. Private schools usually report higher test scores, so people take it to mean that private school teachers must automatically be better. Having worked in both, I can tell you it's not the case.

Private schools have several luxuries:

1. Generally, the sort of parents that go through the trouble and expense to put their kids in a private school are more involved in their child's education. Their more responsive, more likely to encourage academic excellence, and they're more likely to have financially stable home lives. All of these are major obstacles in the public schools.

2. Private schools have the ability to turn away or remove students. Usually, this means they don't have to -- the parents realize this is the case, so they preemptively ride their kids to do well (or get back on track if they're not). But when it comes down to it, they can say, "Not pulling your weight. See ya."

This is why teachers, when given the choice, will often take the lower paying jobs in private schools. You get to work, by and large, with the kids that are far easier to teach. It's worth the pay cut.

But this is not to say public schools are doing anything "wrong." They're exercising an advantage that their "private" status gives them. And public schools are dealing with all of the baggage that comes with being "public," and having to take all comers. So, a straight-up comparison of the schools doesn't prove what some people claim it does.

It's not what the schools are doing that is suspect. It's how the data is misinterpreted.

Therumancer:
big huge snip

And I thought I built walls of text that could be seen from space.

I'm sorry but it's kind of wasted on me, because whether we're actually more or less educated is a completely tangential point that I'm now sorry I devoted any bytes at all to. My interest is in what kind of problems are on the test, and why deceptive wording is used rather than questions geared towards problem-solving.

I know from experience how long it must have taken you to type that, so I'm sorry, but I have no interest in the more/less educated discussion and therefore no interest in taking the time to read it.

McMullen:

Therumancer:
big huge snip

And I thought I built walls of text that could be seen from space.

I'm sorry but it's kind of wasted on me, because whether we're actually more or less educated is a completely tangential point that I'm now sorry I devoted any bytes at all to. My interest is in what kind of problems are on the test, and why deceptive wording is used rather than questions geared towards problem-solving.

I know from experience how long it must have taken you to type that, so I'm sorry, but I have no interest in the more/less educated discussion and therefore no interest in taking the time to read it.

It's sad when someone needs to go into such detail about why they have absolutely no intention of contributing to the subject at hand or even read the orginal post.

God I'm such a hypocrite.

On a side note, I'm sure problem solving shouldn't be hyphenated.

EDIT Actually I'm perfectly certain problem solving shouldn't be hyphenated.

Kurai Angelo:

McMullen:

Therumancer:
big huge snip

And I thought I built walls of text that could be seen from space.

I'm sorry but it's kind of wasted on me, because whether we're actually more or less educated is a completely tangential point that I'm now sorry I devoted any bytes at all to. My interest is in what kind of problems are on the test, and why deceptive wording is used rather than questions geared towards problem-solving.

I know from experience how long it must have taken you to type that, so I'm sorry, but I have no interest in the more/less educated discussion and therefore no interest in taking the time to read it.

It's sad when someone needs to go into such detail about why they have absolutely no intention of contributing to the subject at hand or even read the orginal post.

God I'm such a hypocrite.

On a side note, I'm sure problem solving shouldn't be hyphenated.

EDIT Actually I'm perfectly certain problem solving shouldn't be hyphenated.

A fair point, but you and Mcmullen are taking things a little too far.

The whole tangent was to establish the situation with American education compared to other parts of the world, and why our testing evolved this way. Given some of the responses I received I wind up focusing on the tangent a bit more than I was supposed to.

The point of selling the whole "more educated" bit is to put things into perspective, especially given a few people who were comparing their own forms of standardized placement testing to that of the US and calling it a joke. The point being that even if slightly offensive, things are differant because the nations and their needs are differant. A nation still struggling to educate it's general population, despite pretensions of being there, can test based purely on academic knowlege and people will place with it and find success. In a nation where education is assumed and high levels of it are very common, the competition has to take place on another level.

Being misleading, and turning it into a problem solving exercise rather than a test of academic ability is the new style of competition for a society at such a high level that basic academic success is already assumed among people at the level to take the test.

Hopefully I explained it better, it all works with the initial point, but I did get carried away with the tangent and justifying what I was basing the point on, rather than the point I was making itself.

The SAT is not a sham on the grounds that I did well enough on it to almost get a decent scholarship and just not having the grade for it.

So if anything is wrong, it's the grading system, imo.

Kurai Angelo:

It's sad when someone needs to go into such detail about why they have absolutely no intention of contributing to the subject at hand or even read the orginal post.

I'm not sure who you're addressing. If you're addressing me, I thought Therumancer's post was one big tangent, and was completely unrelated, or at least inconsequential, to the point I was trying to make that was actually related to the article.

I went into detail because I felt bad for wasting the time he spent writing it, but at the same time I really had no interest in a wall of text that was going off on said tangent.

So, what are the rules for hyphenation anyway?

It's kinda strange to think about test taking as gaming, but I feel that this may actually help me in the long run. If I can somehow turn my fear of testing into a challenge that I accept, then maybe I could be better.

And i thoroughly disagree. I've been playing vidyagames all my (19 years of) life. All kinds of them - shooters, RPGs, strategy games, puzzle games, whatever have you. I rarely come across a challenge i cannot overcome with the application of brute force (that is, exhausting every possibility), other than of course Multiplayer, where all that matters is how good your twitchy little fingers are.

And I fucking suck at mathematics. Even if I know all the basics I have to know, I can't solve problems for shit. It simply does not happen. My brain is not some kind of inventory menu which I can dig through to find whatever crucial piece of information I need. It's just a brain. That doesn't quite work like it's advertised to do.

 

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