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Standardized stress

How does standardized testing affect students?

Makayla Boyer

Staff Writer

February 15, 2023

Testing toll - Students are drastically overwhelmed due to testing.

No student jumps for joy when they are required to undergo standardized testing but studies have shown there may be more cons to the tests than just boredom.

According to a study done by the American Psychological Association, teens exhibit far higher stress levels than adults, with 83% of them citing school and tests as a source of stress.

“I think tons of factors can affect how you test,” psychology and history teacher Miss Alexa Sucharetza said. “Whether or not you've eaten breakfast, your anxiety levels if you’re distracted, and whether or not you can afford to take a prep course for the SAT.”

Miss Sucharetza also explained how standardized tests offer a good idea of where students are academically, but only accurately represent those who are good at taking tests.

“I honestly feel like standardized testing does not accurately measure students’ academic abilities given how [it] can affect how a student tests.” Miss Sucharetza said. “Not to mention, I think a more accurate look at a student’s performance would be their trimester grades. Those reflect how they have done in all their classes across multiple days, not just one specific morning on a random day.”

Students' behavior in class during test days can also greatly fluctuate as opposed to regular class time which can result in lower test scores.

“I notice that kids immediately shut down [or] psych themselves out before testing,” Miss Sucharetza said. “I have students in my classes who I know for a fact know the material, yet do poorly on the exam. This suggests to me that the exam isn't truly measuring their ability.”

Every student copes with testing stressors differently, whether it's getting a good night's sleep or just trying breathing techniques.

“Read the questions at least two times and write down your thought process as you’re thinking through the question,” Olivia Mann (10) said. “The most important thing is to take your time and be confident in yourself.”

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