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The Test and the Art of Thinking - Discussion Guide

Grade Level Grades 6-12, Higher Education
Resource Type Lesson Plan
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About the Guide: Use this Discussion Guide to facilitate meaningful conversation alongside the film, more fully explore its themes, and dive deeper into the issue space of testing. With over 50 discussion prompts, this guide will engage students and their parents, academic professionals, and other educators across a variety of topics including:

● The Origins of the SAT - who first authored this test, and what was it used for? How does
the SAT’s history influence its usage today and what we think of it?
● The Myth of Measuring Intelligence - do these tests actually measure intelligence, and if
so, what type of intelligence? Do we even know enough about the mind to measure
intelligence?
● The Test as a Business - as a multibillion-dollar industry, how has the test influenced and
informed the landscape of education in the bigger picture? How can we improve
accessibility and inclusivity within test prep?
● Looking to the Future - are the SAT and ACT needed to allow colleges to evaluate
students? What other tools might replace them? What does an equitable and just
admissions process look like in the future?

With the guide’s unique Student Experience section, you can create space for students to share and reflect on their own feelings and experiences around the test. This guide also includes a comprehensive catalogue of additional resources to enhance and amplify your conversations.

About the Film: Students, parents, and educators all understand the financial, emotional and intellectual burden of the SAT/ACT—tests that are not only an integral part of the college admissions process, but also have become a rite of passage for teenagers in the United States.

Even as adults, few of us forget our experience with these tests. THE TEST AND THE ART OF
THINKING is an eye-opening examination of the SAT and ACT, and the contested and
controversial issues they raise. This surprising film endeavors to support individuals—especially young people—by examining what the test measures and means, and asking a range of visionaries, admissions professionals, and interested parties to discuss the use and ramifications of the test. Trailer

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Discussion Guide.pdf

Lesson Plan
December 13, 2021
3.8 MB
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