stupid question and answer –

from Marco Ricucci *

The famous American professor decided on the recommendation of some candidates to take a pen and paper and write to Miur: the question formulated poorly, all wrong answers

There is no peace for the simplified competition that arose from Minister Brunetta’s lamp. The acceleration, which often results in carelessness in Italy, has meant that the competition to select and recruit, based on merits and skills, aspiring teachers, became a race against time to answer a quiz on human knowledge, or on programs based on pedagogically still. on a thoughtful and transmissive approach, in clear contrast to the ministerial propaganda on skills teaching. Those who have participated in the competition, such as myself, who defiantly acted as a guinea pig to condemn the difficult nature of the cross-stitch competition and draw attention to a serious initial education and meritocratic selection of teachers, know that there are numerous errors, inaccuracies, ambiguities in multiple choice questions.

One of these even involved a professor Howard Gardner, a world-renowned light source for cognitive psychology applied to pedagogy. The American researcher famous for the theory of multiple intelligences with his basic essay Formae mentis. Essay on the diversity of intelligence of 1983. So what is intelligence, roughly speaking? It is a complex neurobiological system that serves to do in different areas: logical-mathematical, linguistic, spatial, musical, kinesthetic or procedural, interpersonal and intrapersonal. His theory therefore constituted a revolution in the development of human knowledge, with consequences in the field of didactic reflection, especially for children. But one of the 50 quiz zone questions for the A18 competition class (philosophy, psychology and educational science) was a convicted felon (and who wrote it ….)
: a group of participants in the regular competition, as many specialized sites have reported, taken by a Cartesian doubt about the validity of the answers suggested in the question regarding multiple intelligences, sent a nice e-mail to their father, Gardner. The professor jumped in the chair, enough to take pen and paper – so to speak – and write directly to the Ministry of Education.

Let’s see the offensive question: According to Howard Gardner, intelligence …. There were four answers: A, B, C, D, but according to the official source or the founder of the theory, none of the given possibilities can be considered too satisfactory. In more detail: for Gardner, intelligence is not a process of optimal adaptation (balance between assimilation and adaptation) according to answer A; not a theoretical construct measured by tests in the form of IQ, in which two factors come into play, one general and one specific, according to answer B; not a multidimensional reality, not a hierarchical structure, but a cubic arrangement, according to answer C; finally, not a set of procedures for doing things that are to be considered a “system” of its own rules that operate on a biological and cultural basis, according to the answer D. In fact, Professor Howard Gardner wrote to the Ministry of Education: This question is not formulated in an appropriate way – none of the alternatives are correct. I ask you to either withdraw the question or rephrase it.

As evidenced by this latest self-goal from the ministry, cross-competition has become a true hunt for error, also spurred on by aspiring teachers who, after studying hard and seriously, have seen the cards at stake change: in fact, the regular competitions launched in 2020 and held this year for health preparedness should be in the traditional way or with open questions. The ministry has officially acknowledged some errors in the quizzes in a list that is becoming more and more comprehensive, broken down by competition class. But as far as we know, Gardner’s email has not yet been answered.

*Professor of Italian and Latin at the Liceo Scientifico Leonardo da Vinci in Milan and lecturer at the University of Milan

17 June 2022 (change 17 June 2022 | 18:44)

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