Tested to Despair

Stop high-stakes testing from destroying public education.

Calling all Stupid Test Questions

It occurred to me that the test questions themselves are a very powerful weapon in this fight against high-stakes testing. People who say, “What’s wrong with raising the bar? What’s wrong with higher standards?” might rethink after looking at some of the poorly worded, misguided, unintelligiblequestions that confront our students. They might realize that this is not so much raising the bar as erecting a screen.

We thought it would be amusing, but it turns out it’s important to collect stupid test questions from state standardized tests across the country.Please contribute.

Perhaps we will combine them all in an extra special test for legislators or their children to take. I’m calling it a rummage sale because you never know what treasures you’ll find.

Stupid QuestionsSend your stupid questions to me at testedtodespair@gmail.com. Right now I have a few grades represented with a few questions – I hope to get lots more.

Here are the guidelines: Please send me…

  • Actual standardized test question. You can send a link, a photo (jpeg), a pdf, or the exactly worded text. In order to be the most fun and the most educational, we have to stick with the real question in its real form or wording.

It would also be great (but not essential) to get…

  • State it is being used in.
  • Year the test is/was given.
  • Grade level it was or is being inflicted on.

Worth a million in prizes: If it’s REALLY stupid, I’ll send you a Tested to Despair bumpersticker. Actually, I might send you one anyway!

I am looking for questions that are:

  • developmentally inappropriate
  • poorly worded
  • based on a faulty diagram
  • based on faulty knowledge
  • have more than one answer
  • have no correct answer
  • designed simply to trick the student
  • just plain idiotic
  • some other stupid thing

I can’t wait to see what you send me! testedtodespair@gmail.com

Mr. Mell


One thought on “Calling all Stupid Test Questions

  1. Just be careful: for those of us proctoring, sharing unreleased test questions can and will get you fired.

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