Should University Students be required to take a Standardized University Leaving State Administered Examination?

In the last five to ten years there has been a movement in the United States pushing for a re-evaluation of the value of Standardized Examination, commonly knowns as national exams or state exams outside of the US: Africa, Europe, Asia, Europe, etc. Many believe that more has to be taken into account besides the actual score from a national examination, SAT, GRE, TOEFL, etc. in determining the future of the student in question. While exploring this topic, one has to wonder why examination anyways? And why Standard Examination in Secondary Education and not Tertiary? Does it make sense to extrapolate Standardized Examination from high school to university while many US academics are questing its value? And lastly, Does it really have to be a one size fits all?

Information and technology have not only been a vehicle for driving modernity but has infused confidence in local leaders to start universities and colleges and post-secondary training schools merely in all countries. In part driven by the demystification of higher education and government policy to train and educate human resources to further development in their countries. The rapid growth has come with the avenue of private capital in the education sector which was largely driven by government and public benefit organizations.

Traditionally the role of a university has always been about training the future leaders and spreading and transferring knowledge both through classroom course work as well as research. And this activity, being social-developmental at the core and supported by governments or public benefits funding, it has for the most been possible to focus on academics and enlightenment of the student. With private capital making its way into university education, the focus has more and more changed from the original role. Though it would be considered utopian to ignore the capital requirement to fund the cash flow, but at occasions, it has gone far influencing all levels and structures up to the point of running universities the same as private corporations. This is to set the precedence of a very big issue that concerns testing and admission that may at times not necessarily be motivated by common sense but ensuring continued financial stream to stay viable

A major task of any educational institution is to educate in different dimensions. Just like the industrial production process, education is a process in itself. The only way to ensure that the process was successful is to assess. From the beginning, Standard Examinations have been there to level set allowing everyone to be measured with the same standard. It is true and this is a point that gets raised over and over, that it will all depend on the resources available to the student’s disposal, but nevertheless, it gives a level playing field to be able to compete.

One realization is that may western countries have elite universities that keep the standard and produce individuals with a higher caliber to keep the flame going. Another realization is that many western countries need bureaucrats to simply execute procedures. And this is the case of the majority of universities, where core understanding and mastery of the subject is not a key requirement for being successful in the workforce. To the point where academics becomes less of a priority than social activities and engagement.

While all dimensions should be focused on, to educate and transform all dimensions in higher education, it would be fair to stipulate that all emanate from market needs and realities. One issue is that in many universities is that there is an issue on falling short on the education that is supposed to be delivered, and the transformation that ought to occur during the education process. A more important issue is that in order to be able to assess and standardized, there would be no other way to do so without a standardized assessment.

Concluding, every country needs, qualified, knowledgeable, professional, word class, engineers, doctors, lawyers, scientists, agronomists, music producers, veterinarians, carpenters, teachers, etc. and yet within the current system in different countries, there can be a loophole to qualify students as such with an even greatly inflated grades given there is no standard way of assessment. In any case, a debate or conversation of standardized tests for at least a selected number of key subjects and professions can be one way to rethink the future of what is needed to be successful in the future.

Some interesting reads:

Test Option Movement:
Advocate for a different way of final examining:
Advocate for a different way of final examining:

Opinion by Wallas, I follow technology and education from near and afar a little more than daily

SG Team

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