Results of a standardized measure of reasoning ability show many students don’t improve much over four years—even at some flagship schools, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of nonpublic results.
Freshmen and seniors at about 200 colleges across the U.S. take a little-known test every year to measure how much better they get at learning to think. The results are discouraging.
At more than half of schools, at least a third of seniors were unable to make a cohesive argument, assess the quality of evidence in a document or interpret data in a table, The Wall Street Journal found after reviewing the latest results from dozens of public colleges and universities that gave the exam between 2013 and 2016.
At some of the most prestigious flagship universities, test results indicate the average graduate shows little or no improvement in critical thinking over four years.