(Dead) end of course exams

I used to think that end of course exams would be a good thing in Algebra, Geometry, and Biology. Now I see the error of that way of thinking.

Why?

Right now, my state’s science exam takes place after 10th grade.  It covers everything students should have learned since 8th grade.  Many of our state standards are about inquiry, systems, and application.  That leaves me lots of latitude to teach Biology content in 9th grade in an inquiry-based, real-world relevant, project learning style.

Instituting a Biology end of course assessment would make much of that impossible.

Dead End

It would bring much more pressure to teach very specific Biology content to prepare them for the state exam.  It would probably force us to move Biology to strictly a 10th grade class.  It would leave little room for interdisciplinary projects.

It would be a shame.

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