Test Scores Play a Large Role in College
Taking Standardized Tests
They have different formats such as essay, multiple choice, fill-ins, short answer, verbal, etc. They serve a purpose to the admissions offices for colleges and universities.
Without them, it would be difficult to gauge the skill level of one student against another. As most students take the same tests for admissions, there is a standard for comparison.
Most of us had to take the SAT or ACT while in high school. They are important tests. An average or high score is desirable, but getting a low score while having superb grades through high school can be damaging. For this reason, preparation and early practice testing is encouraged. The tests themselves offer preliminary testing to help students become aware of the style and pace of the testing.
Scholarships and other financial aid are awarded frequently to student with extremely high test scores. It certainly pays to prepare.
Just when you thought you were done with testing, most graduate schools require more testing to assess what you have learned. This especially goes for business, medical, nursing, and law schools. The stress factor is not as evident in graduate tests since there is usually not much of a time constraint. If you compare it to the last two years of high school, the last two years of college, many would agree that the pressure is much less in college.
There are tests for English-speaking people to gauge their skills in a foreign language. Most often, foreigners who come to the United States to study have to take a test so colleges can properly place them in classes. It's commonly referred to as the Test of English as a Foreign Language, or TOEFL.
No More Pencils
Standardized test have moved away from the traditional fill-in-the-blank sheets with a No. 2 pencil to computer/internet based testing. Computer testing cuts down on overhead and saves the test administrators and test takers a lot of time. This trend will most likely continue throughout the world as more and more nations increase their online population.