The Smarter Balance test is an online test that is being piloted for use during the 2015 school year. The test will be primarily for juniors but sophomores at DHS have piloted the test. This online testing is being piloted to try and replace the MME testing for juniors that is already in effect.
“The plan is that third day is going to be replaced by online testing so the smarter balance was a practice for doing the MME,” Lori Hallberg, a counselor at DHS said.
The piloting that was taken place this year was looking at the procedure of the test and seeing how it worked out.
“[The test] looked at the procedure and made sure schools were ready to handle an online test,” Hallberg said. “Next year will be another practice and I believe the following year it should be for real.”
Even though the test will primarily be for juniors, students in Northeast Middle School, East Lawn and Woodcrest Elementary Schools have taken the pilot.
“We did it a couple weeks ago with sophomores so I’m not sure if the state is going to replace the M.E.E.P. test that 9th graders do and have it done at 9th grade 10th grade and 11th grade,” Hallberg said.
There are multiple advantages and disadvantages to taking a test online as opposed to a test on paper. Some of the biggest disadvantages are the technical issues that could happen during the test.
“Test on computers can go wrong. You can lose your data or save to the wrong file.” sophomore Joshua Pilgrim said as he explained his opinion on taking paper tests versus online tests.
Based on the advantages and disadvantages on taking tests online, students share their opinion on the overall test.
“I feel like I can think better on paper,” Pilgrim said.
Some students also don’t see why it’s necessary to take tests on computers as opposed to the normal paper tests.
“For me I really don’t think it makes a difference,” said sophomore Conner Wilson. “I really don’t see why it’s such a big deal that they did it on a computer. I don’t understand why they have to do that.”
Even though some students don’t see the advantages of taking a test online, it can be helpful for the state of Michigan.
“A higher score on the test shows that students are learning the material they’re supposed to or what the state wants them to learn,” Hallberg said.