The average college freshman in America reads at a 7th grade level

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College Education

The average U.S. college freshman reads at a seventh grade level, according to an educational assessment report.

“We are spending billions of dollars trying to send students to college and maintain them there when, on average, they read at about the grade 6 or 7 level, according to Renaissance Learning’s latest report on what American students in grades 9-12 read, whether assigned or chosen,” said education expert Dr. Sandra Stotsky.

Stotsky, a Professor Emerita at the University of Arkansas, served on the Common Core Validation Committee in 2009-10, during which she called the standards “inferior.” She claimed the Common Core left out the very standards needed to prepare students for STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) careers.

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  • DJohn1

    The key here is the ability to remember what you have been taught in school.
    The average retention over a summer is horrible.
    Yet we have testing. Not everyone should go to college. I maintain we messed up big time sending some kids to high school.
    What they need is a skill that they can sell to the world so that they can make a decent living for the rest of their lives.
    Instead, what we have is one size fits all. So the people out there that should not really be in college are doomed to a low income for the rest of their natural lives. They are the menial labor necessary for many businesses to survive.
    We are attempting to train all chiefs and no indians.
    Training children at an early age how to recall what they are taught is one key to learning.
    That means as soon as a child learns a skill, that child needs to use that skill in order for it to stick in that child’s mind.
    It means memorizing. No child can go through mathematics without learning the basic tables. So what happens if the child fails to learn the basics? They are obviously not going to learn the higher skills either.
    Reading skill is much like learning a language. It involves memorizing. It involves figuring out words you do not know. It also requires an ability to recall what you are taught. That means individual attention at an early stage of learning so that it does not become frustrating.
    People that study how people memorize will tell you that most human memory is imaging. The ability to pull that image back after it has been learned is the difference between one person and another. The one doesn’t learn, it doesn’t stick. The other learns and it does stick.
    Background has a lot to do with it. What kind of vocabulary does the child get exposed to at home?
    Where is the need to learn to spell words? What practical application can you make of learning basic math skills you can do in your head?
    I grew up in the home of a Journeyman Printer. My father was restless and took us from England to Canada to Dayton, Ohio to California and back twice, back to England, then right back to Dayton. I was always given a good vocabulary at home by my parents. I was obviously educated in schools all over the western world.
    At the time in the 50s, California had some really good schools. I was also educated for 3 months in an English Primary School in the 5th grade level. I came back here and had a drill master for a teacher. She was demanding and picked on me constantly. As a result after two years with this drill master, I had a really good basic education and was forced to memorize most of it.
    I entered high school with the equivalent of about a Junior in High School because of her.
    I am no genius level person. I am of average intelligence for the most part.
    In that English school they did one thing different than they do here. They made you use whatever they were teaching immediately after they taught it. It is very effective in making you remember what was taught.
    In any school system with 30 to 40 people in it that is not possible. And that is the key we are failing to give our children.
    I enjoy reading. Over the last 60 years, I have averaged between 3 and 10 books read a week depending on time.
    The sad thing I see is the wasted time in an education system that has no clue as to how to make things stick with students.