Last week, my colleague Katie Hull and I did a quick survey with our students, and I’ll be writing a longer piece about it. But, first, I need some help interpreting the results.

We asked two questions. The shortened versions were:

1) Do standardized tests accurately measure how smart you are? Why or why not?

2) Should teachers be graded on how well students do on those standardized tests? Why or why not?

Katie asked her students in mainstream classes to respond, and I had my IB students and my Beginning/Intermediate ESL students answer.

The answers to the second question were consistent in all the classes — about 85% said student test results should not be used to evaluate teachers.

It’s the answers to the first question that were surprising to me.

Among my IB students, the ones who score the highest on the tests, only 5% said they were accurate measurements of their intelligence.

In Katie’s mainstream classes, about 20% said they were accurate measures.

In my ESL classes, comprised of students who have the most difficulties with the tests, over 60% said they were accurate measures.

How would you interpret these survey results?