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The Testing Trap: How State Writing…
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The Testing Trap: How State Writing Assessments Control Learning

by George Hillocks

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807742295, Paperback)

Hardly a day goes by in America without talk of testing students to higher standards as a means to improve our education system. In The Testing Trap, George Hillocks puts this logic to the test. Through interviews with over three hundred teachers and administrators, Hillocks examines whether state writing tests in Illinois, Kentucky, Oregon, New York, and Texas do what they are supposed to do: Improve education. Ultimately, Hillocks argues that the majority of existing tests actually have a harmful effect on the way students are taught to write. In The Testing Trap, Hillocks demonstrates how the structure of assessment is actually responsible for the low level of thinking encouraged and reinforced in American classrooms. It is his contention that although politicians call for excellence, the tests that they create, and the formulaic writing they accept as passing, actually point to mediocrity as their true aim. In this way, political objectives are easily achieved but our children suffer the consequences. The Testing Trap is a provocative and essential read for administrators, teachers, parents, policymakers, legislators, voters, and all who care about the education of our children.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:15 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Through interviews with over 300 teachers and administrators, Hillocks examines whether state writing tests in Illinois, Kentucky, Oregon, New York, and Texas actually improve students' ability to express their thinking in writing. Ultimately, Hillocks argues that the majority of existing tests actually have a harmful effect on the way students are taught to write. Hillocks demonstrates how the structure of assessment is actually responsible for the low level of thinking encouraged and reinforced in American classrooms. It is his contention that although politicians call for excellence, the tests that they create, and the formulaic writing they accept as passing, actually point to mediocrity as their true aim. In this way, political objectives are easily achieved but our children suffer the consequences. In addition to providing analyses of assessments that do not encourage good writing, The testing trap contrasts them to those that do. Concluding with practical procedures for examining and evaluating writing assessments, this book is a provocative and essential read for administrators, teachers, policymakers, parents, and all who care about the education of our children.… (more)

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