College applicants preparing for standardized tests should take heart. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal discusses how strong performance on standardized tests correlates not only with college admission or first-year grades but with successful outcomes and major life accomplishments in future pursuits and industries.
How exactly is this good news? Fair question.
To the extent that standardized tests measure a student’s ability to read and interpret texts, to reason mathematically, or to think critically, preparation for these tests is preparation for future endeavors and future success--even for life accomplishments that benefit us all.
Rather than reify the notion that standardized tests merely are the bane of existence for high school juniors (and sometimes sophomores or seniors), the correlation between performance and future success is motivating. Thoughtful preparation for standardized tests, rather than a means to an end, is an invitation to hone important foundational skills, the mastery of which (and they can be mastered) benefits students well beyond the college admission process.