I really enjoyed hearing about all of the different experiences that were shared this week. We heard from Finland, Egypt and Korea. I found the different methods of instruction valuable in understanding how what we do in the United States relates to other countries.
We set a certain level of expectations to our students that then reflect our students eventual performance. From Finland it was helpful to hear that there are not as distinct lines drawn between different levels of students. The teachers then are even able to tailor plans to individual students. (this must depend on the situation and resources at hand) Then, to stress synthesis over factual regurgitation helps these student to continue to perform above others.
This attitude towards to students, teachers and education allows for a better system, if only the United States could scale the process to a much larger population. While we can be charmed by the ideal situation, we must be able to enact changes to implement it. how that will be done, I simply do not know.
It was interesting to hear from all of the countries in regards to the “entrance exam” process. In the US we have the SAT and ACT tests which really do not respond to the specific majors or colleges. The closest thing would be the SAT subject tests, but even these are not representative of the find institution.
While the SAT does serve as a factor in the potential of a student to attend certain colleges, it does not seem to have the same level of finality that some of the other entrance exams hold in other countries. To take a test that would continue to hinder or protect your future in a subject is disconcerting.
I have never tested well. The SAT and GRE tests were some of my least favorites, and they did not predict how I would perform in college neither at the undergraduate nor graduate level.
As a closing, here is the article I read about the, yet another, attempt to redo the SAT: