Comments: TAKS science problems

RE: Question 50. You're right; this question is ridiculous. They are apparently trying to test for some basic logic and knowledge of the periodic table and polyatomic ions. Unfortunately, at least some of their solubility rules are wrong. A student who had taken even basic high-school level chemistry would be able to come up with several exceptions to rules 2 and 3.

Posted by Daryl Cobranchi at August 11, 2003 03:02 PM

Man. Thats the kind of test that punishes students for being intelligent...

I remember in my math analysis class, my teacher warning all the sophomores (who had the WASL coming up) to be very careful because by the time they took the test, they'd be very far conceptually in math, and would struggle with the math portion of the test BECAUSE OF IT... these students are two years ahead of the curriculum... they're just "too smart"?

Posted by Stine at October 14, 2003 09:18 PM

Some years ago (quite a few years ago),I failed to convince my intelligent boss that yhere would be a considerable force exerted on the wooden transmission line structure I was designing.He demurred noting that the weight of the wire was only a few pounds.I tried to explain that a large horizontal force was generated because of necessity the line could not sag much but without much success,

A technican hearing the conversion supported me by noting that when he was a telephone lineman in the army,as the telephone wires were made taut the poles would creak.Hearing this my boss agreed with me.Why the failure of my intelligent boss to see the "obvious"?

To begin with he was a graduate electrical engineer.Thus structural engineering was not his forte.

However I was an electrical engineer too so why didnt I fall into the same trap?

In college we did a simple but very informative experiment where the equilibrium of forces was demonstrated by balancing 3 hanging weights.
We were required to calculate the angles the lines of action made with the weights and compare them with the measured angles.

I was given a arrangement of weights and angles that resulted in two nearly equal weights acting almost opposed to each other with a third almost at right angles to the other 2.

I got very poor results naturally !

I did myself proud and did an analysis showing that very small changles in the angles would make very large changes in the forces.

My instructor gave me I think the lowest possible passing grade commenting that my results wer not accurate enough.

To "see" the components of a vector is not I believe intuitive.A very wrong answer in an exam question that reinforces that misperception-that fails to see - nay- fails to understand that a force perpendicular to the direction of motion does no work- reinforces the students misperception.

Posted by angelo ruggiero at October 23, 2003 01:21 AM