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(CBS News)   SAT scores continue to slip. Well good, it's not like they're finding jobs after college anyway   (cbsnews.com) divider line 123
    More: Sad, SAT Scores, high schools, MoneyWatch, College Board  
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2386 clicks; posted to Main » on 26 Sep 2013 at 11:37 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



123 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2013-09-26 10:22:27 AM  
SAT scores are normalized against performance anyway, so just change the grading scale like they've done several times before.

Problem solved.
 
2013-09-26 11:01:56 AM  
The kids are just dumbing down in preparation for their stellar careers in food service, sanitation engineering, and as Wal-mart workers. It's better not to think about it too much. Very smart of them.
 
2013-09-26 11:30:36 AM  
Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.
 
2013-09-26 11:41:48 AM  
So much for the Flynn effect.  Really, I think rising social inequality is behind this, two incomes, no free time, no budget for extra educational resources.  We're racing towards third world now, and the proposed solutions from half the country will just push us there faster.
 
2013-09-26 11:42:29 AM  
It's all about street smarts.....
 
2013-09-26 11:43:03 AM  
Headline: "High School Student's SAT Scores Continue to Slip"

FTA:

"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Continue" and "slip" - what do they MEAN?
 
2013-09-26 11:43:39 AM  
New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"
 
2013-09-26 11:43:43 AM  

TedDalton: It's all about street smarts.....


It's definitely not about being smart enough to just use a period instead of a weird ellipsis thing.
 
2013-09-26 11:44:16 AM  

ERNesbitt: New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"


12?  DAMMIT!
 
2013-09-26 11:45:38 AM  
They'll rescale the scoring again in a few years. Back in my day, a 1300 meant something.
 
2013-09-26 11:45:46 AM  
does this lend credence to the "SAT is biased in favor of White people" arguments?
more minorities taking the test, test scores go down on average.
 
2013-09-26 11:45:48 AM  

ikanreed: So much for the Flynn effect.  Really, I think rising social inequality is behind this, two incomes, no free time, no budget for extra educational resources.  We're racing towards third world now, and the proposed solutions from half the country will just push us there faster.


I believe the Flynn Effect just state that IQ needs to be re-evaluated every 10 years, when the average IQ may increase about 3 points. Course it could be that more kids are taking the SATs which could skew the results.
 
2013-09-26 11:45:54 AM  
SAT and IQ scores are meant for the consumption of nerds, by nerds.
 
2013-09-26 11:47:50 AM  
This would be a problem, if the SAT did a good job of predicting First-Year Undergrad GPA, like it was designed to. But, you know, it doesn't, so, there you go.
 
2013-09-26 11:48:13 AM  

Donnchadha: SAT scores are normalized against performance anyway, so just change the grading scale like they've done several times before.

Problem solved.


That's the resolution I expect. If the right number of students aren't meeting standards, so the logic goes, then the test must not be measuring what is considered standard education.

//We really need to re-imagine a better educational system.
 
2013-09-26 11:48:39 AM  

ikanreed: TedDalton: It's all about street smarts.....

It's definitely not about being smart enough to just use a period instead of a weird ellipsis thing.


The more you know....
 
2013-09-26 11:52:55 AM  
I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.
 
2013-09-26 11:53:30 AM  

TedDalton: It's all about street smarts.....


...Or they might just be book dumb.
 
2013-09-26 11:54:14 AM  
Do you still get a participation ribbon fopr taking it? Because thats important for your self esteem
 
2013-09-26 11:55:38 AM  

The_Original_Roxtar: does this lend credence to the "SAT is biased in favor of White people" arguments?
more minorities taking the test, test scores go down on average.


My guess is that the key variable is 'first-generation college students' rather than 'minorities.' Although the fact that many first-gens speak English as a second language is probably also a factor.
 
2013-09-26 11:56:19 AM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


To be fair, imperial units suck balls.
 
2013-09-26 11:57:39 AM  

Onkel Buck: Do you still get a participation ribbon fopr taking it? Because thats important for your self esteem


It's called a 600.  Although I supposed if you're really participating, you can do worse than the "minimum" by getting everything wrong.
 
2013-09-26 11:58:00 AM  

pkellmey: Donnchadha: SAT scores are normalized against performance anyway, so just change the grading scale like they've done several times before.

Problem solved.

That's the resolution I expect. If the right number of students aren't meeting standards, so the logic goes, then the test must not be measuring what is considered standard education.

//We really need to re-imagine a better educational system.


The US educational system has always been about socialization not education.
 
2013-09-26 11:58:18 AM  
I blame cell phones.

/ and Bush
 
2013-09-26 11:58:45 AM  
It seems like the results may be skewed lower because more kids are taking the SAT than might have in previous years. The "everyone must go to college" mentality.
 
2013-09-26 11:59:05 AM  

TedDalton: It's all about street smarts.....


'Street smarts' is a consolation prize.

/it's called 'common sense'
//'street smarts' is the 'swag' of thinking
 
2013-09-26 12:00:21 PM  
Yeah, there are literally no jobs.
Unemployment is at 100%.
 
2013-09-26 12:00:43 PM  
ikanreed:

To be fair, imperial units suck balls.

-overheard at Yavin 4
 
2013-09-26 12:00:50 PM  

ERNesbitt: New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"


You didn't say what's in the buckets, so I can't answer the question.
 
2013-09-26 12:02:39 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


27,154 gallons and 2 and a quater pints?
 
2013-09-26 12:03:55 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


And if he was a farmer, that sort of information might be useful, but for the average city farker, yea, not so much.

27,154.2876 gallons, plus or minus.

More useful might be how to calculate the volume of a swimming pool so that you can calculate the cholorine needed.
 
2013-09-26 12:03:58 PM  

Begoggle: Yeah, there are literally no jobs.
Unemployment is at 100%.


7% means that if there are 100 people that need a job, and 93 have them, there are no jobs left for the remining 7.

You were one of those ACT kids, weren't you?
 
2013-09-26 12:06:44 PM  
No Politician Left Behind.
 
2013-09-26 12:07:08 PM  

lamecomedian: Headline: "High School Student's SAT Scores Continue to Slip"

FTA:

"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Continue" and "slip" - what do they MEAN?


Came in here to say this. I wonder what Lynn O'Shaughnessy,  TF author, got on her SAT.

/they're not even trying anymore
 
2013-09-26 12:07:11 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


In high school level physics, they gloss over just enough unit cancellation to get the snowflakes to pass the test. The first time I saw this question was in college (12-ish years ago)... We got it the other way around, even the students who understood the concept struggled to figure out breaking a volume into and area and distance.
 
2013-09-26 12:08:02 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


...so he pulled out his glock and popped a cap in your smarty-art ass?
 
2013-09-26 12:10:01 PM  

Uranus Is Huge!: They'll rescale the scoring again in a few years. Back in my day, a 1300 meant something.


In my day 1350 meant something.

/it meant i took it twice and added the scores together.
 
2013-09-26 12:12:55 PM  
When I was a kid I played with sticks and rocks and clumps of dirt, and was fully entertained and learned my R's well.  All these infotainment learning tools are not as useful as we would like to think.
 
2013-09-26 12:13:24 PM  

bmwericus: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

And if he was a farmer, that sort of information might be useful, but for the average city farker, yea, not so much.

27,154.2876 gallons, plus or minus.

More useful might be how to calculate the volume of a swimming pool so that you can calculate the cholorine needed.


The pool question has complex geometry compared to the original question. If they couldn't figure out the field question, the 'gifted' kid would think calculating the volume of a pool was magic.

/have calculated the volume of a pool
//bunch of tedious geometry
 
2013-09-26 12:13:59 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


I'll take, "Who the fark cares?" for 600, Alex
 
2013-09-26 12:14:14 PM  

lamecomedian: Headline: "High School Student's SAT Scores Continue to Slip"

FTA:

"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Continue" and "slip" - what do they MEAN?


funny how you're the only post so far to mention this, everyone else it's about why the results prove they're right and the other guys are wrong.
 
2013-09-26 12:14:55 PM  

MaliFinn: When I was a kid I played with sticks and rocks and clumps of dirt, and was fully entertained and learned my R's well.  All these infotainment learning tools are not as useful as we would like to think.


It has to be some other reason. We can't say what that reason is, but it has to be something else.
 
2013-09-26 12:15:50 PM  
Well there is always the ASVAB. That should terrify some of you into working harder.
 
2013-09-26 12:17:17 PM  
If only 43% of them are prepared for college level studies, then only admit the 43%.
The rest can go to McUniversity.
Seems simple enough to me.
 
2013-09-26 12:18:53 PM  

Dr. Kefarkian: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

I'll take, "Who the fark cares?" for 600, Alex


I'll take, "what the fark is an acre again, and isn't that as variable as "leagues" or "hands"?

Then I would try and fail to remember the volume of a gallon in any linear measurement value at all.

Then I'd say, "use metric you bumblefark bumpkin!"
 
2013-09-26 12:21:25 PM  

mdeesnuts: bmwericus: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

And if he was a farmer, that sort of information might be useful, but for the average city farker, yea, not so much.

27,154.2876 gallons, plus or minus.

More useful might be how to calculate the volume of a swimming pool so that you can calculate the cholorine needed.

The pool question has complex geometry compared to the original question. If they couldn't figure out the field question, the 'gifted' kid would think calculating the volume of a pool was magic.

/have calculated the volume of a pool
//bunch of tedious geometry


Had to calculate moles in a pool for extra credit in HS Chemistry. It wasn't exactly a complex shaped pool, and it wasn't exactly difficult, but damnit, kids should be able to calculate volume.
 
2013-09-26 12:23:59 PM  

GodComplex: ikanreed: So much for the Flynn effect.  Really, I think rising social inequality is behind this, two incomes, no free time, no budget for extra educational resources.  We're racing towards third world now, and the proposed solutions from half the country will just push us there faster.

I believe the Flynn Effect just state that IQ needs to be re-evaluated every 10 years, when the average IQ may increase about 3 points. Course it could be that more kids are taking the SATs which could skew the results.


Came here to say this. More kids are going to college than ever, so more kids take the SATs.

As a complete side note, you'd think it would be easy to get estimates of high-school graduation rates to back something like this up, but:

High School Graduation Rate Hits 40-Year Peak in the U.S.
...
Data reported for the 2010-11 academic year marks the first time all of the states used a uniform measure to calculate graduation rates

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/06/high-school-grad ua tion-rate-hits-40-year-peak-in-the-us/276604/
 
2013-09-26 12:29:50 PM  

ERNesbitt: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

In high school level physics, they gloss over just enough unit cancellation to get the snowflakes to pass the test. The first time I saw this question was in college (12-ish years ago)... We got it the other way around, even the students who understood the concept struggled to figure out breaking a volume into and area and distance.


It's not the volume, it's the memorization of unit conversion (gallons/square inches, square feet/acre) that was probably the sticking point. Let's face it, without Google, do you think you can calculate the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight?
 
2013-09-26 12:33:31 PM  
Is our children learning?
 
2013-09-26 12:35:03 PM  

Uranus Is Huge!: They'll rescale the scoring again in a few years. Back in my day, a 1300 meant something.


THIS. I'm really annoyed that they have ever scaled at all.  It makes no sense.
 
2013-09-26 12:36:49 PM  

draypresct: Let's face it, without Google, do you think you can calculate the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight?


furlong = 1/8 mile
fortnight = 14 days
speed of light = 299,792,458 meters per second

While you didn't specify, I expect that you were referring to the speed of light in a vacuum.  Didn't require the interwebs for these figures but will most certainly need at least a sliderule to do the math part.  These values are just things that learned people should know.  Rote learning is not quite dead yet.
 
2013-09-26 12:37:44 PM  
Silver lining, this may actually mean that more people are getting the opportunity to take the SAT.  It costs money, and if you were not planning on going to college anyway, because you are barely making it in High School...
 
2013-09-26 12:38:30 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


That's not a mathematical question. It's a question that tests your knowledge of units. I don't know off the top of my head what the area of an acre is. If I did it would be trivially easy to calculate how many cubic feet of water we're dealing with.  I also don't know off the top of my head how many cubic feet of water compose a gallon.  But again, if I knew that, it would be trivially easy to calculate how many gallons fell on your acre.

So in actuality, you're complaining that your nephew has a poor knowledge of units of measure. Surprisingly, that's not something that's generally taught.  Though, I agree that it probably should be.
 
2013-09-26 12:40:10 PM  

ikanreed: So much for the Flynn effect.  Really, I think rising social inequality is behind this, two incomes, no free time, no budget for extra educational resources.  We're racing towards third world now, and the proposed solutions from half the country will just push us there faster.



I'm as concerned about the ever increasing privileges associated with wealth as much as the next guy, but this is pushing it. I'm pretty sure the public library has more than a couple books available on SAT preparation. Last time I checked they don't make you fill out a credit app to get a library card.

That being said, I would be really interested to see a study on the correlation between SAT scores and career achievement. The wealthiest self-made person I know didn't even finish high school. He built a small chain of auto detailing shops and then leveraged his equity into developing a business park.
 
2013-09-26 12:42:13 PM  

TheBigJerk: I'll take, "what the fark is an acre again, and isn't that as variable as "leagues" or "hands"?


Surely this is a troll.
 
2013-09-26 12:45:23 PM  
Let more Asians in, exclude others.  Problem solved.
 
2013-09-26 12:45:49 PM  

Honest Bender: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

That's not a mathematical question. It's a question that tests your knowledge of units. I don't know off the top of my head what the area of an acre is. If I did it would be trivially easy to calculate how many cubic feet of water we're dealing with.  I also don't know off the top of my head how many cubic feet of water compose a gallon.  But again, if I knew that, it would be trivially easy to calculate how many gallons fell on your acre.

So in actuality, you're complaining that your nephew has a poor knowledge of units of measure. Surprisingly, that's not something that's generally taught.  Though, I agree that it probably should be.


This is why you should show your work for partial credit.

Step 1.  Determine area of an acre of land (acre = 204' x 204')
Step 2.  Determine volume of water if entire acre is covered in 1" of water

While one might plug in the wrong numbers, transpose them, etc. you have shown that you understand what is required to arrive at the answer.  Even though your final answer may not be the correct one.  Getting the right answer is important but its also good to prove that you understand the concepts and have problem solving capabilities.
 
2013-09-26 12:46:46 PM  

tuffsnake: Is our children learning?


If they can read the Bible that is all they need
 
2013-09-26 12:47:03 PM  
Yep, instead of readin', writin' and 'rithmetic the NEA is making sure the kids learn about racism, recycling and radicalism.  They've done for American education what the UAW did to American auto manufacturing. SAT scores have steadily dropped since the 60s and given the quality of teaching and general scholastic degradation by the educational industrial complex there's no chance of it going anywhere but down.  But we have President Hussein in the White House, an empty suit with a PR machine who sends his kids to private school.
 
2013-09-26 12:47:33 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


A problem requiring conversion between three different unit systems (inches, root acres, cube root gallons) would require most career engineers to pull out a unit table (or Google the units) or running through an intermediate conversion requiring specialized knowledge (usually the density of water). Or, for a particular sarcastic engineer, they'd tell you it's one acre*inch and to do the trivial unit conversion yourself.

I would venture that he did in fact know  how to solve the problem, volume calculation not being rocket science, and you were just being a douche and not allowing him the tools a normal person uses to solve it.

//It's also worth pointing out that gallons are not how rain flow or runoff are measured in the real world, primarily because that would be immensely stupid.  Cubic yards or meters have been standard since like the 1800s.
 
2013-09-26 12:49:02 PM  

farm machine: draypresct: Let's face it, without Google, do you think you can calculate the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight?

furlong = 1/8 mile
fortnight = 14 days
speed of light = 299,792,458 meters per second

While you didn't specify, I expect that you were referring to the speed of light in a vacuum.  Didn't require the interwebs for these figures but will most certainly need at least a sliderule to do the math part.  These values are just things that learned people should know.  Rote learning is not quite dead yet.


Ok, if you did that without google, I'm impressed. I thought I remembered a lot of useless information. And yes, I also can use an abacus and a slide rule.

I agree that rote learning is not dead, and we could probably come up with dozens or hundreds of examples of facts that an adult in our society really should know. I disagree that the length of a furlong (or the volume of a firkin of water) is one of them. It's rarely needed (unlike, for example, the freezing temperature of water) and easily looked up if it ever does come up.
 
2013-09-26 12:49:34 PM  
wait?  when did the SAT score go up to 2400?

my scores out of a possible 1600 are close to the average score for people out of a possible 2400... and i was, am, and will always be, a lazy farker who doesn't study for tests and more likely than not, shows up hungover (which, of the two SATs I took, hungover day was much better than sober day -- but, i have always recognized cigarettes, coffee, and booze to be performance enhancing drugs)
 
2013-09-26 12:50:26 PM  
Remember when the US had a Top 5 in the world educational system?  Remember in the '80's when people started saying our educational system could be improved by privatization through charter schools, voucher programs and competition?  When are the people who pushed for privatization of our school step forward and admit they failed?
 
2013-09-26 12:52:23 PM  

mdeesnuts: TheBigJerk: I'll take, "what the fark is an acre again, and isn't that as variable as "leagues" or "hands"?

Surely this is a troll.


From Wikipedia:
The international symbol of the acre is  ac, and is defined as 1/640 of a square mile. The most commonly used acre today is the international acre. In the United States both the international acre and the slightly different US survey acre are in use. The most common use of the acre is to measure tracts of land. One international acre is defined as exactly 4046.8564224
During the Middle Ages, an acre was the amount of land that could be
 
2013-09-26 12:54:13 PM  
"High school students' SAT scores continue to slip"
 
"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Headline writers at CBS Money Watch fail reading comprehension."

Actually, an important thing to look at is how many students take the tests.  Some states make pretty much anyone who can hold a pencil (or use a writing implement with an assistive device) take the test.  Some states let the dumb kids sit it out.  There has been a push, in general, to get more kids taking the test, which will tend to keep the scores flat even if education improves as a whole.  (In Maine, 90% of the students take the test, in Iowa it's 3%.  Some states, as policy, discourage anyone who might tank their scores from taking them.  It gives the schools the ability to boast about their SAT scores without actually educating their kids.  

http://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d10/tables/dt10_154.asp
 
2013-09-26 12:54:21 PM  

FLMountainMan: Let more Asians in, exclude others.  Problem solved.


Put the Asians in the center of the class, so more kids can cheat of them.
 
2013-09-26 12:54:31 PM  
Bah, stupid formatting errors.
 
2013-09-26 12:57:52 PM  

monoski: tuffsnake: Is our children learning?

If they can read the Bible that is all they need


In theory that's probably true. Reading the bible requires enough knowledge of language to be able to read other texts and learn about other topics as needed.
 
2013-09-26 12:59:38 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2013-09-26 12:59:45 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


Maybe he's gifted in music?
 
2013-09-26 01:00:32 PM  

Dr. Kefarkian: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

I'll take, "Who the fark cares?" for 600, Alex


I was thinking that's what Pick's nephew was thinking.  I know when I was 17 and my uncle came up to me and asked my that question, I'd just say, "fark if I know. Do you own god damned homework".
 
2013-09-26 01:01:09 PM  

Literally Addicted: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

Maybe he's gifted in music?


Or porn.
 
2013-09-26 01:03:45 PM  
We should give props to  pick for his magnificently stupid post successfully derailing this thread.
 
2013-09-26 01:11:30 PM  

TheBigJerk: mdeesnuts: TheBigJerk: I'll take, "what the fark is an acre again, and isn't that as variable as "leagues" or "hands"?

Surely this is a troll.

From Wikipedia:
The international symbol of the acre is  ac, and is defined as 1/640 of a square mile. The most commonly used acre today is the international acre. In the United States both the international acre and the slightly different US survey acre are in use. The most common use of the acre is to measure tracts of land. One international acre is defined as exactly 4046.8564224
During the Middle Ages, an acre was the amount of land that could be


Well, I'll be! Learn something new everyday. I figured since it was the standard usage for land sales in the US there would be an extremely hard definition, though apparrently the difference is so miniscule it can be ignored:

wiki: Since the difference between the U.S. survey acre and international acre is only about a quarter of the size of an A4 sheet of paper (0.016 square metres, 160 square centimetres or 24.8 square inches), it is usually not important which one is being discussed

/TMYK
 
2013-09-26 01:18:22 PM  
it's not like they're finding jobs after college anyway

The unemployment rate for college graduates is 3.5% right now, and has averaged 3.8% for the last 12 months.  Sure, their earning power is probably lower than it used to be before the financial crisis, but they still have an edge over high school grads and dropouts.
 
2013-09-26 01:19:57 PM  
It's a negative system to rely upon, so I hope grades continue to drop.
 
2013-09-26 01:21:03 PM  

Nick Nostril: ERNesbitt: New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"

You didn't say what's in the buckets, so I can't answer the question.


One is full of feathers and the other contains rocks. Study it out!
 
2013-09-26 01:21:30 PM  

mdeesnuts: Well, I'll be! Learn something new everyday. I figured since it was the standard usage for land sales in the US there would be an extremely hard definition, though apparrently the difference is so miniscule it can be ignored:

wiki: Since the difference between the U.S. survey acre and international acre is only about a quarter of the size of an A4 sheet of paper (0.016 square metres, 160 square centimetres or 24.8 square inches), it is usually not important which one is being discussed


What is the difference in gallons between the amount of water over 1 US acre vs. an international acre if both are flooded by 2.75 centimeters of water?
 
2013-09-26 01:21:37 PM  

JenFromTheWood: Nick Nostril: ERNesbitt: New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"

You didn't say what's in the buckets, so I can't answer the question.

One is full of feathers and the other contains rocks. Study it out!


Then clean out your damn buckets
 
2013-09-26 01:23:54 PM  

Knoughah: This would be a problem, if the SAT did a good job of predicting First-Year Undergrad GPA, like it was designed to. But, you know, it doesn't, so, there you go.


Yeah I got a stellar SAT score (before they added the writing portion) and I bombed my first year of college.  Apparently not going to class or doing homework is not the way to ace college courses.

/graduated
//with honors
///back in school cuz my generation is so, so screwed
 
2013-09-26 01:25:59 PM  

pxlboy: JenFromTheWood: Nick Nostril: ERNesbitt: New SAT format:

"If you have one bucket that contains 2 gallons and another bucket that contains 7 gallons, how many buckets do you have?"

You didn't say what's in the buckets, so I can't answer the question.

One is full of feathers and the other contains rocks. Study it out!

Then clean out your damn buckets


But how will I know how fast an apple falls when I shoot it off the head of Hamlet, or something.
/gud lernin
 
2013-09-26 01:26:01 PM  

Arkanaut: it's not like they're finding jobs after college anyway

The unemployment rate for college graduates is 3.5% right now, and has averaged 3.8% for the last 12 months.  Sure, their earning power is probably lower than it used to be before the financial crisis, but they still have an edge over high school grads and dropouts.


The edge to get a job, sure.  But most of them are still carrying debt.  Assuming a kid goes to state school at around $15,000 a year and has $10,000 a year in living debt for books, meals, housing, and the ilke (just basic living expenses), a four-year graduate is carrying $100,000 in school debt with the interest ticking away like a time bomb.
 
2013-09-26 01:27:02 PM  

draypresct: farm machine: draypresct: Let's face it, without Google, do you think you can calculate the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight?

furlong = 1/8 mile
fortnight = 14 days
speed of light = 299,792,458 meters per second

While you didn't specify, I expect that you were referring to the speed of light in a vacuum.  Didn't require the interwebs for these figures but will most certainly need at least a sliderule to do the math part.  These values are just things that learned people should know.  Rote learning is not quite dead yet.

Ok, if you did that without google, I'm impressed. I thought I remembered a lot of useless information. And yes, I also can use an abacus and a slide rule.

I agree that rote learning is not dead, and we could probably come up with dozens or hundreds of examples of facts that an adult in our society really should know. I disagree that the length of a furlong (or the volume of a firkin of water) is one of them. It's rarely needed (unlike, for example, the freezing temperature of water) and easily looked up if it ever does come up.


We used to play that game with the new guys. We called it Stump the Chump. Everyone would come up with a question about the most obscure and irrelevant piece of technical data to bombard the new guy with questions about until they cry. Eventually everyone knew all kinds of useless tecnical crap that wasn't useful or necessary for the job, but they seemed to have fun making new people cry.
 
2013-09-26 01:28:34 PM  

doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.


Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.
 
2013-09-26 01:29:23 PM  

enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.


I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.
 
2013-09-26 01:30:53 PM  

GodComplex: mdeesnuts: bmwericus: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

And if he was a farmer, that sort of information might be useful, but for the average city farker, yea, not so much.

27,154.2876 gallons, plus or minus.

More useful might be how to calculate the volume of a swimming pool so that you can calculate the cholorine needed.

The pool question has complex geometry compared to the original question. If they couldn't figure out the field question, the 'gifted' kid would think calculating the volume of a pool was magic.

/have calculated the volume of a pool
//bunch of tedious geometry

Had to calculate moles in a pool for extra credit in HS Chemistry. It wasn't exactly a complex shaped pool, and it wasn't exactly difficult, but damnit, kids should be able to calculate volume.


Moles of Urea in the pool?
 
2013-09-26 01:33:46 PM  

PrivateCaboose: enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.

I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.


I would think that one would perhaps look at the mechanism responsible for helping make kids smarter. I'm not a Tea Party person, but I think we need to blame shiatty family structure and lousy schools before we blame a minor political party.
 
2013-09-26 01:38:41 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2013-09-26 01:42:08 PM  

enik: PrivateCaboose: enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.

I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.

I would think that one would perhaps look at the mechanism responsible for helping make kids smarter. I'm not a Tea Party person, but I think we need to blame shiatty family structure and lousy schools before we blame a minor political party.


Sigh you are still missing it.

Dumb kids become dumb adults.
Dumb adults join Tea Party.
Tea Party stays alive for the long haul.

Have we painted a simple enough picture?
 
2013-09-26 01:43:48 PM  

tuffsnake: monoski: tuffsnake: Is our children learning?

If they can read the Bible that is all they need

In theory that's probably true. Reading the bible requires enough knowledge of language to be able to read other texts and learn about other topics as needed.


Comes up light in science and math though
 
2013-09-26 01:46:43 PM  
I'll just leave this here....

Daughter got a perfect score on her SAT
Yesterday, daughter got a perfect score on her GRE
In December, she graduates 2 quarters early from University.

FARK: she gets it from her mother....
 
2013-09-26 01:51:06 PM  
Unfortunately for the school I was in, I realized that standardized testing was bullshiat when I was a sophomore. The upper management was useless, the teachers were quitting in droves, and the students knew it was just an overcrowded daycare and treated it as such. As someone who was going to change schools next year, and had no intention of going to collage, I decided to vote with my SAT test. I made a skull with the answer bubbles.

blogs-images.forbes.com
/Debt free
//Four years of life not wasted
///Gainfully self employed
////fark that school
 
2013-09-26 01:58:56 PM  

PrivateCaboose: enik: PrivateCaboose: enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.

I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.

I would think that one would perhaps look at the mechanism responsible for helping make kids smarter. I'm not a Tea Party person, but I think we need to blame shiatty family structure and lousy schools before we blame a minor political party.

Sigh you are still missing it.

Dumb kids become dumb adults.
Dumb adults join Tea Party.
Tea Party stays alive for the long haul.

Have we painted a simple enough picture?


Yes but how many of them fit in the two buckets that pour over an acre when there's an inch of rain?
 
2013-09-26 02:00:27 PM  

AngryDragon:


This was posted in a thread about future success, someone replied back that the experienced diggers make over 80k a year. Not bad for a ditch digger
 
2013-09-26 02:02:26 PM  
A chicken-and-a-half lays an egg-and-a-half in a day-and-a-half, how many eggs does one chicken lay in one day?

/my grandfather asked me that when I was like 17 years old
 
2013-09-26 02:05:52 PM  

doyner: ikanreed: TedDalton: It's all about street smarts.....

It's definitely not about being smart enough to just use a period instead of a weird ellipsis thing.

The more you know....


that is FARKING BRILLIANT! thanks ever so much- teaching Mass Comm 101 with a heavy slant on writing.  So far they're holding up but - Mid terms are comin'

thanks again - and that quiz page hoo-boi

yeah that too 8-D two, too, brake, break etc .  .  .  and what-notly stuff
 
2013-09-26 02:06:59 PM  

powhound: A chicken-and-a-half lays an egg-and-a-half in a day-and-a-half, how many eggs does one chicken lay in one day?

/my grandfather asked me that when I was like 17 years old


Well, the half chicken is dead, so one chicken lays 2/3 of an egg a day. I guess it just kinda sits there 2/3 out and 1/3 still in for the last 12 hours.
 
2013-09-26 02:10:04 PM  

powhound: A chicken-and-a-half lays an egg-and-a-half in a day-and-a-half, how many eggs does one chicken lay in one day?

/my grandfather asked me that when I was like 17 years old


2/3rd of an egg? Which would be weird, all the stuff would come running out.
 
2013-09-26 02:13:02 PM  
Interesting thing those SATs - I just ran a quick online practice Subject SAT on World History.  Out of 22 questions, at least five of them were on Islam and the middle east (not detailed questions, mind you).

I'm willing to bet that test didn't have anything remotely close to those questions 10 years ago.
 
2013-09-26 02:16:25 PM  

Torchsong: Yes but how many of them fit in the two buckets that pour over an acre when there's an inch of rain?


You're going to need a bigger bucket
 
2013-09-26 02:17:20 PM  
"Kids are like any other group of people... a few winners and a whole lot of losers"

- George Carlin
 
2013-09-26 02:37:03 PM  

lamecomedian: Headline: "High School Student's SAT Scores Continue to Slip"

FTA:

"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Continue" and "slip" - what do they MEAN?


Their own SAT scores slipped, they scored a 200 on the writing part.
 
2013-09-26 02:44:46 PM  

ERNesbitt: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

In high school level physics, they gloss over just enough unit cancellation to get the snowflakes to pass the test. The first time I saw this question was in college (12-ish years ago)... We got it the other way around, even the students who understood the concept struggled to figure out breaking a volume into and area and distance.


This is not entirely fair.  There is probably one student in the entire high school who knows how many cubic inches are in a gallon.

You would probably see a different result if you asked him a similar question using metric units.
 
2013-09-26 02:46:17 PM  

PrivateCaboose: enik: PrivateCaboose: enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.

I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.

I would think that one would perhaps look at the mechanism responsible for helping make kids smarter. I'm not a Tea Party person, but I think we need to blame shiatty family structure and lousy schools before we blame a minor political party.

Sigh you are still missing it.

Dumb kids become dumb adults.
Dumb adults join Tea Party.
Tea Party stays alive for the long haul.

Have we painted a simple enough picture?


Some men you just can't reach.
 
2013-09-26 02:52:28 PM  

Dr. Kefarkian: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

I'll take, "Who the fark cares?" for 600, Alex


Civil engineers/Architects/Construction Managers who need to calculate drainage for a specific lot size...
 
2013-09-26 02:56:30 PM  

Muta: Remember when the US had a Top 5 in the world educational system?  Remember in the '80's when people started saying our educational system could be improved by privatization through charter schools, voucher programs and competition?  When are the people who pushed for privatization of our school step forward and admit they failed?


Cite some data, like SAT scores, to back up your contention that charter and voucher schools are inferior to public schools, or it's valid to assume you're talking out of your ass.
 
2013-09-26 03:01:35 PM  

PrivateCaboose: enik: PrivateCaboose: enik: doyner: Get comfy for the long haul, folks. The Tea Party ain't going anywhere.

Why yes, when I think teachers unions and public schools, I think Tea Party. Good observation.

I think he means: kids aren't getting any smarter, so we're in for more dumb leadership even with the next generation.

I would think that one would perhaps look at the mechanism responsible for helping make kids smarter. I'm not a Tea Party person, but I think we need to blame shiatty family structure and lousy schools before we blame a minor political party.

Sigh you are still missing it.

Dumb kids become dumb adults.
Dumb adults join Tea Party.
Tea Party stays alive for the long haul.

Have we painted a simple enough picture?


I'm a member of 'a' (there's no 'the') Tea Party and I'm pretty damned smart, and the Tea Partiers I've met appear to be more intelligent than the population as a whole. The dumb ones tend to remain checked out and sit on their asses, not join political groups and raise hell about things.
 
2013-09-26 03:07:00 PM  

jjorsett: I'm a member of 'a' (there's no 'the') Tea Party and I'm pretty damned smart, and the Tea Partiers I've met appear to be more intelligent than the population as a whole. The dumb ones tend to remain checked out and sit on their asses, not join political groups and raise hell about things.


I know a handful of tea party members. I can vouch for the fact that some of them are indeed pretty smart, just so very wrong.

The tea party is probably not different from most samples of society, a handful of winners and a whole lot of losers.
 
2013-09-26 03:15:50 PM  

Nutsac_Jim: ERNesbitt: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

In high school level physics, they gloss over just enough unit cancellation to get the snowflakes to pass the test. The first time I saw this question was in college (12-ish years ago)... We got it the other way around, even the students who understood the concept struggled to figure out breaking a volume into and area and distance.

This is not entirely fair.  There is probably one student in the entire high school who knows how many cubic inches are in a gallon.

You would probably see a different result if you asked him a similar question using metric units.


7.46 gal/ft^3 if memory serves me. The point of the exercise wasn't to know exact conversions, it was to see if we could use conversions we knew (and had been studying up until that point) to extrapolate new information. The only "complicated" part is realizing you can cancel square-feet out of cubic feet to get a one-dimensional distance measurement (a useful skill when a portion of your job is estimating holding tank size, drainage, or concrete volume for construction).
 
2013-09-26 04:32:39 PM  

GodComplex:  Course it could be that more kids are taking the SATs which could skew the results.


This, maybe?  Kids who weren't college material 20 years ago wouldn't have taken the test then.  But similar kids today are considered college material---because everyone is college material nowadays!---so they're taking the SAT now.  Result?  Average scores drop.
 
2013-09-26 04:56:11 PM  

HoratioGates: "High school students' SAT scores continue to slip"
 
"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Headline writers at CBS Money Watch fail reading comprehension."

Actually, an important thing to look at is how many students take the tests.  Some states make pretty much anyone who can hold a pencil (or use a writing implement with an assistive device) take the test.  Some states let the dumb kids sit it out.  There has been a push, in general, to get more kids taking the test, which will tend to keep the scores flat even if education improves as a whole.  (In Maine, 90% of the students take the test, in Iowa it's 3%.  Some states, as policy, discourage anyone who might tank their scores from taking them.  It gives the schools the ability to boast about their SAT scores without actually educating their kids.  

http://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d10/tables/dt10_154.asp


Some of those students in Iowa take the ACT instead of the SAT.
 
2013-09-26 05:12:47 PM  

TheBigJerk: We should give props to  pick for his magnificently stupid post successfully derailing this thread.


He's gifted.
 
2013-09-26 05:54:09 PM  

ikanreed: Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.

To be fair, imperial units suck balls.


Yep. If the question was how many cubic meters of water fall on a square kilometer area if one cm rain falls upon it, then it would be an easy question of decimal point placement. That would be 0.01 m rain on a 1,000,000 m2 area, that makes it 10,000 m3.

Honestly, if I was the kid, I would start by converting everything to metric.
 
2013-09-26 06:13:24 PM  
"You don't say .."

ubeforeitsnews.com
 
2013-09-26 06:35:51 PM  
farm machine:
Step 1.  Determine area of an acre of land (acre = 204' x 204')
Step 2.  Determine volume of water if entire acre is covered in 1" of water

While one might plug in the wrong numbers, transpose them, etc. you have shown that you understand what is required to arrive at the answer.  Even though your final answer may not be the correct one.  Getting the right answer is important but its also good to prove that you understand the concepts and have problem solving capabilities.


Close. 208.75 squared, number of square feet. Divide by 12, number of cubic feet of water. Density of water is 1 gram per cubic centimeter. Multiply your cubic feet by 900 (roughly the number of cubic centimeters in a cubic foot), divide by 30- number of grams in an ounce.

So, roughly, back of the envelope, using round numbers:

210 squared is 44100 square feet.
44100 square feet each an inch deep divided by 12 is 3675 cubic feet.
Taking our next two steps together (multiply by 900, divide by 30), divided by 30 is 110250 ounces of water
110250 ounces is 861.328 gallons, so 861 gallons, plus about a quart and a pint.

At least that's what I got. Dimensional analysis doesn't work, anyone see my error.
 
2013-09-26 07:05:35 PM  
I'm a physics major which means I'm happy to answer a question about horsepower in units of Newton-inches per microsecond because it's still correct dimensionally. I'd have answered in acre-feet units. If I was feeling generous I would divide by A* where *the number of gallons in an acre-foot.

That being said dimensional analysis and error analysis are incredibly valuable tools. You can greatly increase confidence in an expression if its units process as expected and rule it out entirely if they don't. It still staggers me how error analysis especially in non-linear systems baffles so many people.

===

Back on topic the SATs were a pain in the written section because they contained questions like "What is the best title for the previous short story?" A) Billy and Jen Go to the Store B) The Cheating Incident or C) A Lesson Learned. Complete farked up questions without a clear answer.
 
2013-09-26 07:55:30 PM  

Sword and Shield: farm machine:
Step 1.  Determine area of an acre of land (acre = 204' x 204')
Step 2.  Determine volume of water if entire acre is covered in 1" of water

While one might plug in the wrong numbers, transpose them, etc. you have shown that you understand what is required to arrive at the answer.  Even though your final answer may not be the correct one.  Getting the right answer is important but its also good to prove that you understand the concepts and have problem solving capabilities.

Close. 208.75 squared, number of square feet. Divide by 12, number of cubic feet of water. Density of water is 1 gram per cubic centimeter. Multiply your cubic feet by 900 (roughly the number of cubic centimeters in a cubic foot), divide by 30- number of grams in an ounce.

So, roughly, back of the envelope, using round numbers:

210 squared is 44100 square feet.
44100 square feet each an inch deep divided by 12 is 3675 cubic feet.
Taking our next two steps together (multiply by 900, divide by 30), divided by 30 is 110250 ounces of water
110250 ounces is 861.328 gallons, so 861 gallons, plus about a quart and a pint.

At least that's what I got. Dimensional analysis doesn't work, anyone see my error.


I came back to the thread to see if I got any response to my previous post a bit above. Then I read your post and I laughed so hard, I don't even know how to start describing it.

So... Do I get it right, US math is about converting imperial units back and forth?

/obviously, I'm from Europe
 
2013-09-26 08:31:02 PM  
This is what "conservatives" wanted. Fewer kids going to college means a cheaper labor pool which lacks those pesky critical thinking skills that employers and politicians don't want to see in the riffraff anyway.
 
2013-09-26 09:01:41 PM  

Pick: I asked my nephew who was 17 at the time and considered gifted by his parents, a simple mathematical question; How many gallons of water fall on an acre, if one inch of rain falls upon it? He did not know how to even start to calculate the answer.


Do you mean imperial gallon, US customary liquid gallon, or US dry gallon?

/anyway, to get the easiest answer is to Google "1 acre * 1 inch to gallon", which returns "27 154.2857 US gallons"
//it's strange that Google knows the difference between imperial and US gallons, but doesn't know US dry gallon
 
2013-09-26 10:23:45 PM  
This is expected. They previously basically imported the SAT II Writing for the Writing section, but test prep companies very quickly pumped out lots of information to help people beat the essay, and the Writing scores were higher than they wanted. In addition, they changed the essay grading process to make it less fair to students. SAT essay graders are now only allowed a certain number of perfect "6" scores, and they're now required to grade so quickly that they can't actually read more than the introduction. So, they scan your essay to look for big words - one test taker wrote a "lorem ipsum" essay with good vocabulary and a thesis but absolutely no content whatsoever and submitted it for a perfect score - and then, if you pass that, they'll decide based on their quota whether to give you a 4, 5, or 6. To beat the test prep companies, they make about one essay prompt in three virtually impossible to answer in an intelligent fashion, which defeats the usual preparation (get to know a few different important people's biographies in detail, apply their experiences to the prompt) but also leaves students flummoxed and less likely to be able to score well on the essay. After they started doing that, Writing scores dropped.

You can also add in a greater number of students with English as a Second Language taking the test, often against their will. Many school districts require their students to take the SATs regardless of educational attainment, and we also have more immigrant students who made it out in the second post-Soviet emigration taking it. The test is still astonishingly culturally biased, and also relies heavily on subtle linguistic connotations only available to students who are raised in an environment where people speak high-class English (yes, African-American Vernacular English is a bad thing to speak around your kids as long as the SAT continues to be the standard for college admissions; don't do it).

TL;DR: They severely screwed with the Writing section, and more people who don't have the background for the SAT are taking it.
 
2013-09-27 01:36:54 AM  

HoratioGates: "High school students' SAT scores continue to slip"
 
"High school seniors who graduated earlier this year generated the exact same scores as last year's crop of test takers."

"Headline writers at CBS Money Watch fail reading comprehension."

Actually, an important thing to look at is how many students take the tests.  Some states make pretty much anyone who can hold a pencil (or use a writing implement with an assistive device) take the test.  Some states let the dumb kids sit it out.  There has been a push, in general, to get more kids taking the test, which will tend to keep the scores flat even if education improves as a whole.  (In Maine, 90% of the students take the test, in Iowa it's 3%.  Some states, as policy, discourage anyone who might tank their scores from taking them.  It gives the schools the ability to boast about their SAT scores without actually educating their kids.  

http://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d10/tables/dt10_154.asp


Many midwestern states prefer the ACT over the SAT, which could explain the Iowa thing.
 
2013-09-27 11:21:22 AM  
I teach algebra 2 and math for college readiness, a class for seniors who passed the Post secondary Education Readiness Test but opted out of college level classes or never passed the PERT. The ratio is about 20:1 in favor of those not passing it.
The PERT cannot be taken with a calculator so I don't allow them in class. Almost every student whines incessantly about any kind of basic computations (+, -, x, /, ^2) done by hand. Any long division is met with stubborn resistance, calculations with decimals are hopeless with most of them. All of this comes after spending the first few weeks going over the basics, with seniors, of elementary math.  Their inability to understand fractions makes me fearful for the world of tomorrow.
If this doesn't make any sense I'm going to blame how gorram hard it is to type on an iPad after the update. I had to close keyboard and re-open it several times to get this post finished and lost my train of thought in the frustration.
 
2013-09-27 12:38:18 PM  

betelgeux: I teach algebra 2 and math for college readiness, a class for seniors who passed the Post secondary Education Readiness Test but opted out of college level classes or never passed the PERT. The ratio is about 20:1 in favor of those not passing it.
The PERT cannot be taken with a calculator so I don't allow them in class. Almost every student whines incessantly about any kind of basic computations (+, -, x, /, ^2) done by hand. Any long division is met with stubborn resistance, calculations with decimals are hopeless with most of them. All of this comes after spending the first few weeks going over the basics, with seniors, of elementary math.   Their inability to understand fractions makes me fearful for the world of tomorrow.
If this doesn't make any sense I'm going to blame how gorram hard it is to type on an iPad after the update. I had to close keyboard and re-open it several times to get this post finished and lost my train of thought in the frustration.



These aren't the kids who will be running the world of tomorrow. These are the kids who have been through more than a decade of the American school system and still couldn't do long division.

You're dealing with a biased sample, and as American student math skills continue to show improvement, it's just going to get more and more biased in the years to come.

Keep at it, though. I disagree with the South-East Asian system of simply leaving parts of the population completely uneducated.* If we keep working at it, we might even be able to make things like the recent KKK rallies even more pathetic than they currently are.

/*Before you say "they have higher illiteracy rates because they don't have as much money for education", take a look at the male/female differences.
 
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