Vivian Chen, 12th Grader || 10.29.18
Imagine that you are taking the CST test, and you are stuck on a problem that you do not even know what the concept is about. Naturally, the most common solution would be to just randomly choose an answer, because there is still a ¼ chance that you can get it correct. But is that really the right way to test our students? A new program called Common Core has been launched to fix the defects on the CST tests, but people all over the country has become infuriated over the new system that is supposed to test our students. But is it really as bad as it seems? Instead of keeping the old system of the CST, the new Common Core has much to offer. Common Core should be kept because, not only does it make it harder to cheat on in Common Core, but it is a more efficient alternative, and it allows students to think much deeper than they would in the CST.
To begin with, Common Core should be kept because its system makes it harder to cheat on. In the past years while the CST system was still being used, there have been many cases of not just students, but even teachers that were cheating on the test, erasing and correcting their students’ answers, so their school could get a higher CST average. However, with the new system of Common Core, when students are finished with their test, it directly gets sent to the administrators who grade the test. This can help reduce the risk of cheating. Furthermore, the test system is designed to make every single test different from the others, which makes it harder for a student to look over at the next computer and copy off their answers. One very common concern of Common Core is that the test is taken on a computer. Many believe that a student is able to close out the window of Common Core and open up a calculator, or use the internet to cheat on the test. But, in truth, unless the computer is hacked, students can not open up a new tab because Common Core uses a secure browser system, which prevents students from opening up something other than the test.
Another benefit of common core, is that it is a more efficient and eco-friendly alternative to the CST test. Every year, the government must print millions of paper to give to each student every year. On top of that, someone has to deliver all of these tests to every district in the state. But with Common Core, these pesky procedures have been removed. Since now almost everyone in our generation has access to a computer, all one has to do is to simply log on and take the test, which eliminates the long processes that precede it. Tests have always been taken on paper, but was that always the most eco-friendly, or even a cost- efficient alternative? Since our generation is now revolving around technology, computers can be found everywhere. Instead of printing tons of paper each and every year, computers can be used over and over again, and have multiple uses. By using computers, not only our planet can be saved, but time and money can be saved too.
Guessing on a test, can not really be considered as a legitimate answer, but when taking the CST, a student can guess on the whole test without knowing any of the content, and still have a chance of passing. Because of the multiple choice system that the CST uses, it allows students to just guess on an answer, and have a ¼ chance of getting it right. But if the student knows nothing about the content of the test, what is the point of taking it in the first place? Tests are made to show how much a student knows and how much he or she has learned over the year. If a student is simply guessing, it doesn’t show what the student knows, therefore, eliminating the purpose of a test. Though the CST may have these flaws, the system of Common Core is built to prevent students from simply guessing on the test. The test system is designed to make students critically think on their answer. Some students are required to write essays, paragraphs, and are required to use text evidence, and to cite where their answers came from. Also, the test system is made so that each test fits the level of each student. Every question that is answered correctly makes the following question harder, making sure that each test is the correct level for each student. This allows students to think for their answers, preventing them from choosing a random answer and getting it right.
Common Core has so much to offer, from efficiency to difficulty, from its anti- cheating system to its eco-friendly alternatives, Common Core can help create a new world where students are more educated, and can think for their answers. Maybe it is time that we eliminate the CST and replace it with Common Core, or maybe we should take out Common Core altogether? Despite its many benefits, will Common Core ever be enough to replace the CST, or has Common Core long surpassed the standards of the CST? Should we replace the CST?