By Masood Ashraf Raja, Hillary Stringer, Zach VandeZande
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As Kenneth J. Saltman concludes from reviewing the research, “High stakes testing regimes do not achieve what they are designed to achieve. However, to think beyond efficacy to the underlying assumptions about ‘achievement,’ it is necessary to raise theoretical concerns. Theoretically, at the very least, the enforcement-oriented assumptions . . fail to consider the limitations of defining ‘achievement’ through high-stakes tests, fail to question what knowledge and whose knowledge constitute legitimate or official curricula that students are expected to master, and fail to interrogate the problematic assumptions of learning modeled on digestion or commodity acquisition” (128).
These nonpropositional forms of knowledge include prototypes, exemplars, and information-processing routines. Prototypes, the most familiar form of which is the stereotype, are models incorporating what are taken to be the most typical features of members of a given category. Prototypes come in multiple forms, including concepts, prototypic individuals, prototypic body images, episode scripts, life scripts, prototypic emotions, and action scripts. Prototypes (including stereotypes) distort perception by automatically attributing all of the prototypical features to any individual who is perceived as belonging to that particular category.
Works Cited Anderson, Amanda. ” In Cosmopolitics: Thinking and Feeling beyond the Nation. Edited by Pheng Cheah and Bruce Robbins. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1998, 265–289. Appiah, Kwame Anthony. Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers. New York: Norton, 2006. Beck, Ulrich. ” Theory, Culture & Society 19, no. 1–2 (2002): 17–44. Bracher, Mark. Social Symptoms of Identity Needs: Why We Have Failed to Solve Our Social Problems, and What to Do about It. London: Karnac, 2009.