Math And The Current Education System Essay

707 Words Oct 14th, 2015 3 Pages
In our current education system, grades come early and frequently. They are intended to provide a method to assess the understanding and mastery of course material with a universal and easily-understood metric. However, as with anything that attempts to condense a complex idea, in this case learning, into a few numbers or letters, there are some serious flaws. Grades are intended to measure learning, but as an extrinsic reward, grades tend to reward assignment and test mastery. After all, there are a plethora of test-taking tips that describe all the tricks to mastering multiple choice questions through educated guessing and essay templates with the standard “intro – 3 body paragraphs – conclusion.” Hardly conducive to creativity. Even intrinsic motivation can suffer from this extrinsic reward. If a student does poorly in terms of grades in a subject that they love, they may be discouraged from pursuing the field even if they work hard to master the concepts. Conversely, students may do well in a class but be unable to explain anything they studied once the class is over. Grades serve as the main goal and reward, specific and attainable, but they are not meaningful. A student may have achieved an A, but does that mean they learned? Did they retain and process the information or did they simply regurgitate it at the right time? Because grades are determined from standardized assignments and tests, they also favor certain personality traits, which results in an inherently…

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