For anyone that is preparing or thinking about preparing for one of the standardized 'high stakes' tests (you know which ones) -- the SAT, GRE, GMAT, ISEE, SSAT, and so on -- there's something you really should know about test development.
But first consider this. Wouldn't it be sensible for tests to discover what your strengths are and what you do well in? Of course! But who said these tests or the test developers are sensible? In fact, why should they be? Here are two things test developers don't want you to know
1) Test developers usually (meaning not EVERY test is created this way, although most are) try to trick students into providing the wrong answer. Huh?
2) Standardized tests are intentionally designed so that many or even most students will not complete them within the given time limit.
Now why would these nice testing companies engage in these practices? Select the best choice below:
a) Test developers just wouldn't have enough time to write questions that most students could comfortably answer without a time limit.
b) Test developers try to "trick" students because students and parents spend a lot of time learning "tricks" to get high scores, so it's just "self-defense."
c) Test developers help their companies make more money by engaging in these practices.
d) Test developers realize that a good way to judge someone's insight and knowledge is to see whether the test taker can see subtle differences between the "correct" answer and one that is very close to being correct.
e) Test developers are angry because they work long hours and the work is tedious, so they take their frustration out on people that take the test.
And the answer is.....
Let's have some fun. I'm not going to reveal the correct answer right now. So let's make this question into a mini-test. Respond with your answer in the comments section. I'm not being mean because a) you're not being graded; b) the answer doesn't "count"; and c) getting the answer right or not has no reflection on your intelligence, knowledge, education, or perspicacity.
: < )
Until next time (when I'll give the correct answer)