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<v Teacher>[Intro Music] Good morning, class. Today, we are going to be taking a test and I want you to listen to me very carefully when I give you the instructions, because I am only going to give them once. You are to mark down the answer with a vertical mark between the dotted lines that best answer the question that you are being asked, you will do this with a number two pencil, but you will not do it until after you have written down your name. The name of the school, the date of the test, the day, the month, your city and state and whether you are a boy or girl. We will be taking three tests in order for you to best be able to demonstrate how much you know and how well you can think. You will not be required to answer all the questions on any of the tests, though you will be required to answer each of the questions on some parts of each of the test. Before we begin. You will be told when to start and when to stop. You'll be told where to mark your answer sheets and where not to mark your answer sheets. You will mark each of your answers on a separate answer sheet. Is everything clear? Good. Then let's begin. <v Betsy Haley>Bring back memories of your childhood test-takingdays? How about this? Remember it? Signs like this used to hang outside that classroom door whenever you were inside taking the test so that no one would disturb you. The fact is, you weren't likely to be disturbed by anything from the outside. You were disturbed enough just thinking about having to take the test. We've all experienced the trauma of taking the standardized test. The mouth goes dry, your stomach turns and perspire and the mind goes blank. Your positive, your whole future is hanging on the results of this test. <v Teacher>A complete utter and unforgivable botch of your standard achievement test. You are hereby-
<v Narrator>You know it's important, but you don't even-. <v Student>Understand the directions. <v Teacher>Ready. Aim. <v Narrator>It's true, many people place considerable importance on test scores someday this may change, but until it does, students will be required to take the standardized test and it is important that they do the best they can. <v Teacher 2>All right. Let's try this word Allen. <v Allen>Image. <v Teacher 2>OK. How many syllables- <v Narrator>teachers know that true assessment is between them and their students. <v Teacher 2>Well, will you make us a sentence with the word image? <v Student>I had a clear image in my mind. <v Narrator>Unfortunately, these two life situations are difficult to measure since no two situations will ever be the same. <v Betsy Haley>The standardized test is one acceptable alternative, taking the test could be viewed as an integral part of the learning process if we view it as a beginning rather than an ending. Helping students to learn how to take a test should be a regular part of our classroom activity. Knowing how to take a test doesn't necessarily mean that the student will be able to answer more questions correctly, but it will keep those other factors from interfering. The student who knows what to expect on test day will be less nervous and will be able to do a better job. <v Narrator>When test day arrives. It's just as important that the teacher be as relaxed and well prepared as the students. If the teacher is properly prepared to administer a standardized test, a great deal can be done to help the students emotionally and academically do the best they can. Read over the testing manual prior to the testing day and become familiar with each time segment. Do not assume that test directions will be clear to the students. Words such as unless or if may not be a part of the student's vocabulary or may have a different meaning to them, directions should be given in the sequence in which the student performs the action. For example, do not say answer the questions after you write your name on the test. Make out a seating chart or a room arrangement in advance, and let your students practice before the test day. Have extra number two pencils available and sharpened, check to see how the test is to be corrected by hand or machine. Be sure you have enough booklets and answer sheets
<v Teacher>Tomorrow when you're taking the test. I'm feeling very sure that you all do a good job-
<v Narrator>To relieve some of the anxiety, convince the students that you as their teacher have faith in them and that a test score is not a value judgment. <v Teacher>And do the best you can remember that you're not going to be graded on the test. There will be things on the test that you probably won't have seen before and you will not understand. And you want to skip over those things. You want to try to do the things that on the test that you know best and spend your time with those. So if you come across something that you don't understand, you want to just try to skip it <v Narrator>Offer a few test-taking skills before the test day. <v Teacher>the booklet with the questions in it and an answer sheet. And it's important that you- <v Narrator>Only use a number two pencil. <v Teacher>Pencil that you have there, the number two pencil. And as you can see here, and I've got it on the board-. <v Narrator>Are the placement blanks on the answer sheet horizontal or vertical? <v Teacher>So you choose the correct answer from the booklet and record your answer on the answer sheet. What you need to do with your number two pencil is take it. And if the answer that you choose is number two, you will take and make a dark pencil mark in here- <v Narrator>practice filling out the information asked for on the answer sheet.
<v Teacher>We'd like to practice. <v Narrator>Name, date, grade. <v Teacher>The information in the top left hand corner. I'd like you to now print your name, the grade, your school. The date and our city and state. <v Teacher>Candy? <v Candy>Can we abbreviate? <v Teacher>Yes. <v Narrator>Another helpful idea is to type a list of easy questions in the test format,have the students answer the questions on the answer sheet. <v Teacher>I'm going to be reading from-. <v Narrator>This gives the students practice reading on one page and marking on another. Give some sample directions for certain test sections. <v Teacher>Do not begin any test until I say go. And when I say stop, put your pencils down. <v Narrator>During the practice sessions, you as the teacher will be better able to spot those students who are having problems. If they tend to lose their place or frequently mark the wrong boxes, have them use their hands, a spare pencil and eraser or whatever to mark the place as they go along. Work with a stopwatch during the trial test and jot down beginning and ending times. <v Teacher>Stop writing, please. Time is up.
<v Narrator>When you feel the students have become more comfortable with the physical skills of test-taking, you could spend some time reinforcing any academic skills. <v Narrator>Keep questions in mind, read them carefully. Reiko, do not jump to conclusions. <v Narrator>Practice skimming paragraphs and short articles, read to find the important ideas in a limited period of time. Ask yourself lots of questions. When reading a paragraph, ask yourself how and why it happened, or try to figure out the reasoning if possible, think out loud as you work a problem, then check your answer. <v Betsy Haley>Often went slower students are faced with questions that demand funnel reasoning. They lack the patience to pinpoint the answer correctly. If they do not see the answer immediately, quite often they're lost and they get frustrated. That slower student usually engages in one shot, thinking it usually means that he doesn't even read the directions quite often skips them to the extent that he doesn't understand what to do. When asked to reread the directions. Quite often they can proceed with the test as the other students. The student often has the necessary information, but he just doesn't understand the question. <v Narrator>On the day of the test, teachers should offer their students some helpful suggestions.
<v Teacher>OK, now that everyone is seated, I'd like to remind you of a few things that we've talked about before. Remember to complete the entire test or section that you're working on as quickly as you can answer the questions that you're sure of first, if you're not sure of some, you can mark them lightly and go back to them if you have time at the end. Guess if you're not sure, don't get too involved in any one question. Move on and cover as many questions as you can. Remember now, work as carefully as you can. Don't spend too- <v Narrator>Remember, a test score is a measurement, not an evaluation. <v Teacher>You're not expected to know all the answers to the test. So do the ones you know best first and then move along quickly. <v Betsy Haley>Standardized tests are not just for thinking and learning, but rather for determining how well you can take a test. A test is a measurement, not an evaluation. And as such, when used wisely, can help us reduce substantially the amount of guesswork that goes into predicting any human performance. Students and teachers who are prepared on test day will be relaxed because they know what to expect. Students will understand that taking a standardized test is just a beginning, not an ending. [music plays]. <v Narrator>Their hands will be steady, their eyes bright, their minds alert and active. They will feel confident that when the time comes with or without the sign hanging on the door, the only disturbances they will encounter come from the outside.
The Test
Producing Organization
WTVI (Television station : Charlotte, N.C.)
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
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Program Description
"'THE TEST' contains practical suggestions on how to reduce a student's trauma when taking a standardized test."--1979 Peabody Awards entry form. 'THE TEST? features pupil assessment specialist Betsy Haley who instructs and directs students and teachers on how to create the best test-taking environment to excel at standardized tests. 'THE TEST? discusses both administrative and academic test-taking skills in order to make the process less stressful for both parties.
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Director: Barnes, Bill
Executive Producer: Hearne, Gail
Producer: Barnes, Bill
Producing Organization: WTVI (Television station : Charlotte, N.C.)
Producing Organization: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education
Speaker: Haley, Betsy
Writer: Barnes, Bill
Writer: Haley, Betsy
Writer: Hearne, Gail
AAPB Contributor Holdings
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
Identifier: cpb-aacip-453471504cc (Filename)
Format: U-matic
Duration: 00:10:00
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Chicago: “The Test,” 1979-07, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 10, 2023,
MLA: “The Test.” 1979-07. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 10, 2023. <>.
APA: The Test. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from