This I Believe

Alexander - Louisville, Kentucky
Entered on June 12, 2007

A couple of nights ago I was performing a routine email check when I stumbled upon a letter from UofL which stated that I have been selected for the Continuing Undergrad Scholarship for the next school year, and that’s when it hit me. I remembered those dreadful high school days when all I could think about were different strategies of how I could improve my ACT scores. Every time I would take the ACT test, I would feel discouraged more and more, and not only that, when some of my classmates would proudly showcase their test results, I would loose since of ego altogether.

My name is Alexander, and I believe that the ACT and SAT tests is an improper way to measure student’s future success in college. Those tests are primarily designed to measure a student’s reaction rate, his ability to quickly pick up what is important and leave behind what’s not, but will you not acquire those same skills while in undergraduate program? Unless you are in English major, how often will you use those overly difficult English words that they expect you to know on the ACT? The reading section for instance, requires for you to have mastered the skill of quickly skimming through information, but when I have to study for my Biology exam, I read about 130 pages as thoroughly as I can, and perhaps even reread it the second time. If I was to skim like they expect you on the ACT, then I would surely do badly on my Biology test.

What we need is another type of test, a test which would measure a student’s mental endurance, his sense of motivation and how long he can withstand the hardships of rigorous study before he’ll brake down. Imagine a facility which would have many different rooms, a test would begin and you would be entered into a large empty room, where there would be a table and a small chair, and on that table, there would lay a 5 by 5 rubics cube. Your task is to sit down and solve this puzzle. Eight hours later, when you are tired, hungry and completely bored, you begin to forget why you are here and you start to convince yourself that you can fail one of the rooms and still get a high score. While another student will be just as tired, but he will continue, no matter what. And that is the test which would directly measure your future successes in college, when you would spend an entire night preparing for organic chemistry exams, and whether or not you are the type of person who is wiling to sacrifice his night for a better cause. My name is Alexander, and that is what I believe.