Assessment is everywhere. A student’s test score, game scores, someone’s weight and height, you name it. We are constantly doing assessment. In our Team Dynamics class last Quarter, I briefly talked about the importance of a student’s test score and how it can be the single determining factor for admission and job opportunities.

Let’s take a closer look at this situation: there are millions of high school students in China. Competition for the best schools is hot and heavy. Usually, the best schools post their minimum score for admission in public so that those students who scored lower will just have to look for alternative schools.

I remember when I was in school in China, after every test/exam, students will get ranked by their score. It instilled the message to us that you are only as good as your score and, your ranking. Nothing else matters, not your speaking ability, your critical thinking skills, not your interpersonal styles. And, it looks like this trend is not going anywhere any time soon. In fact, the competition is getting more heated as the years go by.

Since I left China, I have been taught to look beyond the end result and focus more on the process. It was difficult at first I must admit (after being in such competitive environment, all I could focus on was the end result and the final score I got). But what I have learned in this program is if you work hard on the process, the end result will be a good one. Assessment is not just about the numbers, it is way beyond that.