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Narrowing of Curriculum to Suit Standardized Testing

NARROWING OF CURRICULUM TO SUIT STANDARDIZED TESTSStandardized tests have slowly become the primary focus in the world’s educational systems. They are mainly designed to give a look at how well a student performs in a given subject area. With a large number of students graduating high school each year these standardized tests give educators a standard for assessing their students. In this present age of educational reform, there has been a radical rise in the narrowing of curriculum so that students are subjected to only the curriculum that is associated with state standards in which students will be assessed on through standardized tests. Standardized tests are also becoming a way of holding teachers and students responsible for attaining a high level of achievement in their courses. Oftentimes the results from these standardized tests are usually used as the basis of information in order for education systems can be improved. The problem with this is that the reform movement proposes that a combination of curriculum narrowing and standardized testing are having a detrimental effect on the overall education of students. Therefore the purpose of this paper is to examine the rational and methodology for assessing the effect of a narrowed curriculum on the outcome of standardized testing.This research is important because a common finding amongst multiple studies was how the teachers’ attitude toward the standardized test was a contributing factor to its impact on their pedagogical choices. According to Slomp (2008), the teachers in their study valued the standardized test to some point, however the more critical of the exam’s construct flaws a teacher was, the more explicitly that teacher focused on teaching to the exam. Hume and Coll (2009) found a similar trend amongst the teachers in their study where many of the teachers are operating in the terms of teaching to the test rather than to the spirit of the curriculum. Research performed by…

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