eighth grade

eighth grade

The State of Arizona Uses a New Test to Determine If Students Are Ready for College

High school students in Arizona might have a bigger worry than if they will win their football games this year. A new study reveals that many of them are not on track to pursue a college education.

In January 2011, the ACT Explore standardized test was given to almost 20,000 eighth-grade students and it showed that many of these students are likely to not be able to pass a college entrance exam, even though 62 percent hope to pursue a four year degree. The test also surveys the students about their interests in order to be able to offer advice concerning future careers. However, if the students are not able to pursue a higher education, their future career options will be limited.

How should the schools combat this discouraging news? Many are planning on using the results to place students in remedial or advanced high school classes, depending on how the students did on the exam. Sadly, this means that about a third of the students will be placed in advanced classes for math and reading, while half will be on track for English classes. The worst of the news concerns science: only 10 percent of the students are on track for this subject.

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American Students Do Not Know Enough About Geography

Do you know what causes an earthquake? Or where the American Southwest is? Well, if you do, you have a much better grasp on geography than most eight graders in this country, according to a new report.

The report, which was created from the results of the 2010 National Assessment of Education Progress test,  said that fewer than one-third of American students are considered proficient in geography. High school seniors scored, on average, 56.4 percent on this test. This is unfortunate for our nation because it shows that students are not being prepared to work in a global workforce.

“Geography is not just about maps,” said David Driscoll, the chairman of the National Assessment Governing Board. “It is a rich and varied disciple that, now more than ever, is vital to understanding the connections between our global economy, environment, and diverse cultures.”

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