Does your national curriculum assess higher-order thinking skills in students?
There are six orders of thinking according to Bloom's taxonomy - knowledge, understanding, application, analysis, evaluation and synthesis. Does your national curriculum or standardised tests in your country test the higher-order skills (analysis, evaluation and synthesis) in students? How are they assessed?
I would say, here in the US, absolutely not. I did learn analysis, evaluation, and synthesis in my alternative high school. That school - Hawthorne, now long gone - demanded a lot, and helped students get top scores on standardized tests, then went way beyond that in the senior year.
That was 35 years ago. I've spent 20 years training professionals all over the US, and I can say that, even in top professions like Information Technology and Project Management, and even among top business executives and government leaders, analysis, evaluation, and synthesis are incredibly rare skills. Even application is rare. Also, I can say that, in the 30 states I've worked in in the US, the better the primary education of that state, the better quality the adult studens are in terms of understanding.
Personally, I do not believe that the advanced skills (even application in the real world), can be assessed by standardized tests. Synthetic ability leads to new, innovative solutions that will work. No test with automated scoring can tell the difference between a brilliant idea and poor understanding. Remember that the business plan for Fedex got a C at Harvard because the professor thought it was unrealistic. If a Harvard professor can't see brilliance, how can a computer scoring system?
How can national curriculum tests assess higher-order thinking? Higher order thinking requires a unique response from the individual participating in the test. When you have, at most, 5 responses to choose from, there's not much individualized thinking/reasoning going on. A better way to assess higher order thinking is to use open ended questions. However, that's not possible because of the expense of grading the assessments. And even those grading the assessments have their own personal bias added into the mix of the evaluation.
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