Testing the "Dumbing Down" Hypothesis

To test that hypothesis Lech constructed scores of survey instruments compiled from the math questions derived from publicly released SATs from the early 1980s through 2005. The survey instruments were intentionally created to conceal the source of the questions in order to reduce reader-bias towards standardized testing. They were then disseminated to more than 1,500 qualified high school math teachers that were randomly selected from a pool of every high school (both public and private) in the United States. Their responses were tabulated. Lech found that the SAT math questions were not getting easier at all in the eyes of these math teachers; in fact they were getting slightly harder.

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