My War With Standardized Testing

Essay by asdfghjkltanya October 2013

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My War With Standardized Testing

This story isn't about getting bad grades. This story is about how getting bad grades changed my life.

I embarked on my journey of taking SATs towards the end of my sophomore year in high school. I spent three months preparing, learning vocabulary, practicing my math, and doing over 20 practice tests. My grades were good, and I felt prepared. Test day came and went as smooth as butter; everything felt right. Little did I know that this was only 1/3rd of my battle with SATs.

Results came out and surrounded by my friends in great anticipation, I checked my score. And just like that, four digits on a screen crushed my world. 1950. Worse than the grade, were the sympathetic looks I received. I went home distraught. My tear ducts assumed a permanently overflowing status. The immediate reaction was to give up on everything.

Who needs all those big dreams anyway? Nonetheless, disappointment faded and soon made room for determination. I would try harder, work faster, and be stronger.

The whole summer, I read and reread the course material. I enlisted the help of a math tutor to help me with concepts I hadn't fully grasped. I re-did the twenty practice tests, and did almost twenty more. I pulled all-nighters to memorize the vocabulary and grammar rules yet again. This time I was certain I could beat it, what with my last practice test having a bright red 2340 scrawled on the top.

History tends to repeat itself. Well at least it did in this case. 2010/2400. Where did I go wrong now? Was I not working hard enough putting all my waking hours into one test? I was at a complete loss. This time however, getting back up didn't even seem like an...