The medians for

a passing quality in composition for each year high school for the five groups of

teachers represented in table 1 read as follows:

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Table II vividly sets forth the relation- served that Trabue, in deriving his stanship between the normal ability of high- dards, discriminated between the pupils school pupils in composition and the arbi

in the lower 25 per cent of the hightrary judgment of teachers with reference

school classes and those in the upper 75 to passing standards.

per cent, and that he also set up, in a tenThe table gives the medians actually at

tative way, standards regarded as ideal. tained by thousands of high-school pupils

The subjective passing standards set by

teachers of English in the various secin typical American city and county school

tions of the United States are seen to rise systems. Presented here also are the

far above the actual attainments of pumedians derived by Trabue through data* pils in the several sections of the country collected by him in his survey of the com- represented in this report, and also above position teaching in the high schools of both the practical and ideal standards de. Nassau County, New York. It will be ob- rived by Trabue.

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54 High
St. Paul, Mobile Co., Schools in Nassau
Minn. Alabama 35 States Co., N. Y.

120 Teachers
of English

Upper 75% of Classes


1 2

5.18 5.02 5.95 6.30

5.83 5.66 6.27 6.64

5.18 5.02 5.95 6.30

4.99 5.88 5.38 6.69

5.00 5.25 5.68 5.94

7.2 7.7 8.0 9.0

6.01 6.5 6.9 7.2

5.5 6.0 6.4 6.7

*Trabue,"Supplementing the Hillegas Scale," pages 25-27. Bureau of Publications, Teachers College, Columbia University.

The impracticability of the subjective apropos. A drill sergeant, during the early standards of the teachers of English is days of our preparation for war, was trainshown graphically in Diagram B.

ing a squad of rookies. He was so intent The curve representing the subjective upon securing the exact movements inchoice of the teachers runs high into the volved in the facings, that he never took region of literary merit; this, too, when his eyes off the feet of the men. After the standards involved mere passing attain- a command for “About face,” he found one ment; whereas, the curve representing Tra- pair of shoes that remained in the original bue's ideal standards just barely reaches the position pointing to the front. He glanced quality of literary excellence.

up at the man, reprimanded him sharply, In still greater contrast to the curve rep

and demanded an explanation. "If you resenting the teachers' arbitrary choice for please, sir," responded the man, "I executed passing standards is the curve representing your command all right, but the shoes the median attainments of high-school issued to me by the supply sergeant are pupils.

so large that it is very difficult to make them turn with my feet.”

It appears from the findings reported in


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Diagram B-Comparison of Teachers' Arbitrary
Passing. Standards in Composition with Ideal
Standards and with Medians Actually
Attained by Pupils

the foregoing discussion that teachers live,

perhaps, too largely in a state of mind, and The absurdity of the whole situation is as a result do not know what is actually caricatured in the accompanying cartoon happening in the schoolroom. They know by Burton Barns.

what they desire should happen, but they The cartoon presents very truthfully the do not yet seem to possess the information unhappy situation of the pupil struggling necessary to achieve their desires. The under the arbitrary standards imposed by objective presence of real child-life in the zealous but erring teachers. One is re- schoolroom is not clearly recognized, and, minded by this cartoon of a story that is consequently, is not adequately under

stood. An abnormal situation prevails, the calm perspective of distance, that all which teachers are unconscious of. but eliminated the effect of motion. To

The children feel it, but do not under- him the placid Thames, the Tower of Lonstand. As a result, mental and social re- don, the spires of Westminster possessed lations are broken down rather than built the stability of centuries and did not lose up. Teachers are blissfully unaware of their charm because of his own mad rush, the velocity effect of their teaching, which traveling above them. It was not until outstrips the psychological movements of he began the descent at a sharp and precipithe child-mind. They seem to view the tous angle, passing within measurable diswhole educational field from a superior tance of a tiny cottage on the outskirts of intellectual altitude, into which few objec- London, that he became aware of the tertive realities enter. In their mental isola- rific velocity of his movements in relation tion they view things much as the writer to the terrestrial objects beneath him. did once, looking from an aeroplane down Teachers must single out now and then upon the city of London. At an altitude of a few distinct, objective elements in the many thousand feet above the city the educational landscape, and get their mental velocity at which the aeroplane moved was bearings with reference to these. They not as disturbing to vision as might have niust descend now and then from the subeen expected. The passenger was indeed perior altitude of their pedagogical tradiscarcely conscious of the speed of his move- tions to the mental level of the child. Teachments. So long as his surroundings were ers of composition must revise their standessentially space, attenuated atmosphere, ards in accordance with rational methods in which the more ponderable objects of of research. They must derive standards the world were not present to force upon that will define definite "passing attainthe attention a realization of relative speeds mentsfor each year high school. or velocities, he caught sight of things in

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What effect upon pedagogical method may be expected from a substitution (optional) of intelligence tests and tests for specific ability for formal examinations in specific or general attainment as a requirement for entrance to college?

What is the relative value of college entrance examinations as compared with the certification of high schools ?

* C. C. Certain in The English Journal, 1919-20.

Central High School

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OW fast and how accurately should But, similar to the second, the report

a pupil be able to operate a type- would probably be "23 words per minute,' writer at the end of one, two, three, or and yet approximately the same number four semesters? It seems that no one has of keys would be struck in each test. been able to supply definite information Another difficulty, due to the unequal as to the rate to be attained at the end of unit, arises when an attempt is made by any semester's work in typewriting. This a teacher to measure the progress of article is a report of an attempt to for- pupils from day to day. If the same test mulate tentative standards for each se- is repeated frequently, the element of mester's work in typewriting.

practice enters and results are vitiated as

far as the determination of growth is UNIFORM UNITS OF MEASUREMENT LACKING

concerned. If different tests are given, the The first difficulty encountered in at- results are not comparable. It is, theretacking this problem was that of ade- fore, exceedingly difficult to measure acquate and accurate methods of measure- curately the progress made with the ment. The units ordinarily used have means available at present. been either the word or the line. Since a word may consist of from one to fifteen

THE STROKE AS A UNIT OF MEASURE or more letters, and a line may be from After conferences with Homer W. Anforty to eighty spaces in length, one can- derson, assistant director of educational not tell what has really been accomplished research, the writer decided that a new when a pupil has written forty words, or unit of measurement must be used, and three lines per minute. An example of accordingly, the stroke unit was investithe variability possible is found in the gated. A stroke may be defined as any following excerpts from tests sent out by single effort in typewriting. It may be two typewriter companies. Note the dif- (1) the effort made in striking any key ference in the lengths of the words. whether it be a letter key, a back spacer

key, a tabulator key, or a shift key, or it NO. 1

may be (2) the effort made in returning but I was so wet at the top that a little more at the bottom did not bother me to any great the carriage to start a new line. It is extent, and I kept steadily at the job I was on

clear then that a capital letter represents

two strokes, one for the shift key and -Those who are actively engaged in ship- one for the letter. ping, however, realize that in addition, Lloyd's comprises a wide system of reporting the move- In order to judge of the value of the

stroke unit, two types of tests In each of these passages there are given. In the first, 250 pupils of Central about 145 spaces, but in the first there High School wrote for three minutes on are 34 words, and in the second only material consisting of a portion of an easy 23. If material similar to the first exam- fairy tale. The words were short, averple be given to a group of pupils as a test aging 4.7 strokes. This was followed by of their ability in typewriting, the report a second test from an editorial of literary might well be “34 words per minute.” character. The stroke average in this case *Copyright, 1920, by E. G. Blackstone.

NO. 2

ments of vessels

was 7.2. When the results had been tab


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ulated, it was found that there was a

us what make you selected and in what respect

our offer has failed to interest you?
great variation in the number of words We make this request only as a matter of busi-

ness, for we are making our plan just as attractive
written in the two cases, but that the

to the customer as we know how, and the rapidly

increasing number of orders from all parts of the
median number of strokes

minute was

country is proof that they are regarded favorably

in many cases. But if our offer failed to suit you approximately equal. Tests of the same in any respect, we should be glad to have you tell

us in order that we may, if possible, modify our type were given again, and the same re- offer so as to make it more acceptable.

No other manufacturers are building their pianos sults were obtained. These results in- under more favorable conditions than we, and none

are able to offer better inducements in the way of
dicate that the stroke is a satisfactory quality, prices, and terms. If you have not yet

decided, may we not have your order?
unit of measurement. However, not We inclose a stamped envelope for your answers

to our questions.
enough experimentation has been made

Respectfully yours, to make certain the uniformity in results

The test was scored by having the when words of extreme variation in pupils count the number of words written length are used. Therefore, in the con

and having the teacher convert this num-
struction of typewriting, tests for use in ber into the number of strokes by means
determining standards, tests as nearly of a conversion table. The results were
equivalent as possible, have been con-

then tabulated by courses.
structed. In order to secure this, each TENTATIVE STANDARDS FOR RATE
test has an equal number of one letter, or The rates at which pupils wrote in this
two, three, five, ten, etc., letter words. It test are shown in Diagram I.
is believed that with this additional re- STROKES
finement, the stroke unit is sufficiently

accurate to give reliable results in the

269 UPPER measurement of abilities and progress in

QUARTILE typewriting




The tests based on the principles set


200 forth above were given in June, 1920, to

200 203 QUARTILE all the typewriting classes in four high


1175 schools.

The following shows the method of

giving the test and the test itself.
Follow these directions carefully:

1. Set marginal stops at 5 and 75.

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100 Set machine for double spacing. Place regular typewriting paper in machine.

180 4. Type the following information at the top of the sheet. Form 1

50 (Name)


(Grade) 17

11A (Typewriting Course) (School)

(Date) 2

Central High June 1, 1920 5. Teacher and pupils should read the following together:

2 3 4 When the above directions have been carried

COURSES out. wait for the signal "Start" from the in

When this order is given, type the Diagram 1-Rate of Typewriting in Terms of letter on the lower part of this paper. You will

Strokes per Minute be given three minutes to write as much as you

You will not be expected to finish the The median number of strokes written by letter. You will be marked for both accuracy and speed. Stop instantly when "Time" is Course (1) pupils was 104, that is, one-half of called. Do not make any corrections. Wait for the signal to start. Keep your eyes on the in

the pupils made 104 or more strokes, and onestructor until it is given.

half made 104 or fewer strokes per minute; the THE TEST

lower quartile shows that in Course (1), 25 per Dear Sir: Answering your request, we recently quoted you

cent of the pupils made 80 strokes or fewer; the a low price on our pianos, and, not having received upper quartile shows that 25 per cent, on the your order, we take occasion to inquire whether you have as yet bought. If you have, will you tell

other hand, made 135 strokes or more per minute.

2. 3.


John Doe



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