I’ve been taking a look at the GRE lately, as I consider graduate school as a potential future direction. The GRE, as far as I can tell, is just the SAT with more writing involved. And just like the SAT, the testing seems to have nothing to do with your intelligence, grasp of basic subjects such as grammar or math, or with any kind of general understanding of anything real at all—it is simply to test your endurance and stamina for 3+ hours of wading through questions designed to numb your soul and trick you into being misled by hazy wording or vague comparisons. It’s like all it is really testing is your ability to study and take that specific test. It has no application in reality, other than garnering you a score so you can apply to expensive schools. It does not demonstrate your intelligence nor capability to achieve.
What is it with our nation’s obsession with standardized tests? The very fact that they are standardized ensures immediately that they will have no relevance for anything other than gauging how much a student is capable of sifting through academic bullshit. Because that’s all it is—academic bullshit. I don’t think the test is hard at all, nor did I think the SAT was hard either. It’s just so tedious and dry that it deadens your brain and soul to the point that you just stop caring a third of the way through the exam and stop applying yourself to it at all. At least, that’s my problem with these tests. I can score adequately on them, but I don’t apply myself enough to score excellently. I have no interest in “studying” for this test. I have no interest in taking bullshit classes on taking a bullshit exam. What a waste of time, in my opinion. This is time that can be spent actually learning something useful, such as how to make a seed ball, making your forehand topspin stronger in Wii Sports tennis, or how to be mounted by a loa and eat hot coals.
Oh sure, I’m going to touch up my math a little bit, because I never actually did learn any math in school. I never considered it worthy of my attention. When I worked as an instructional aide at a high school, and I had to work with students in algebra and geometry, and demonstrate to them how to do it, I suddenly discovered that math wasn’t very hard at all. So I think that I’m OK, if I go over all the basic stuff that I was supposed to have learned in elementary school. But that’s all the studying I can handle. I have never been able to study anything that I have no interest in. In college, I discovered that when I had to take classes that I could care less about, such as a general biology course, all I had to do was buy the reader the night before the final and flip through it. Then it was fresh on my mind, and I could score adequately on the final enough to pass the course, without having attended any more than 2 or 3 classes. See, that’s what I call intelligence. But I don’t think that most graduate schools would agree, unfortunately.