Every year students all over the world sit down to take a standardized test in some format to measure their knowledge and educational growth. And though millions of individuals participate in these exams, not everyone does it the same. There is curiosity as to how other countries prepare for their testing and what we may be able to learn from it.
Testing in Russia
This year Russian school students took the EGE, also known as the Unified State Exam. TheMoscowNews.com writes, “The Unified State Exam, which consists of several parts . . ., is a student’s only ticket to college admission at this time”. The test is so important that one history teacher told rferl.org that there is really no 11th grade anymore, it is just time spent preparing for the test. Some things about the test include.
- Russian language.
- Foreign language.
- Safety training.
- Physical education.
- Focuses more on skills than knowledge.
- Uses public observers during the test to “keep a close eye on exam proceedings”.
China Makes the Grade
There may be fewer places that take their testing more serious than China. The Asian culture is often known for instilling discipline and focus into their students along with strong work ethics and high standards. And their national standardized testing is taken very seriously. Theglobalist.com writes, “college entrance exams is a major event”.
- “Green protection zones” suspends construction projects and reroutes traffic near exam sites.
- Taxi companies reserve thousands of cars in advance.
- Oral test questions are played on the radio.
- History and politics testing focuses solely on dates and names.
- Language exams allocate grades based on how well a student can quote classical texts and idioms.
- Some students even memorize the entire dictionary.
Questions in the US
In the United States the king of standardized testing is by far college entrance exams. The ACT is the first test a student will take to move toward possible college admissions. One of the first things students need to realize is it’s a marathon not a sprint. While most public and private institutions provide education/prep to prepare for the ACT; many students supplemental classroom learning with directed ACT test prep resources due to the overwhelming emphasis Universities put on scores when accepting applicants. Educationsector.org sites “Just over half of the [US] states . . . use computers to deliver a portion of the annual state testing programs mandated by the federal No Child Left Behind.”
Standardized testing may be similar all over the world, but how students prepare is not. If we look we can see each culture has its own unique methods that can really benefit everyone who is willing to adapt.
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