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Kenneth ClarkKenneth Clark
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never went to college, although he's teaching at Amherst now. Ralph Ellison went for a year or two to Tuskegee [Institute] and he was a Schweitzer professor at N.Y.U.

No, you can't think with absolute predictions that the individual's life achievements on the basis of tests-- I did a study for the United States State Department on the relationship between test performance on the Foreign Service-- the Foreign Service offers its test-- it's one of the most difficult entrance exams conducted. And when I compared the test performance of Foreign Service officers with their performance in the field evaluation, there was little or no correlation. Interesting enough-- one of the interesting things that I found was that the young Foreign Service officers who scored highest the test stayed in the Foreign Service the least for time of term. I guess they got bored with it.

But that's what I'll say about your question, that tests are indicators of some aspect of what is required of us as we seek to live and cope, and they're not always accurate predictors. Certainly not on the upper end. You rarely get, however, individuals with very high achievement in life with very low scores. On the other hand, if you get high scores, it doesn't necessarily mean high achievement. Drive, persistence, luck, family inheritance, financial. In my case, I even had pretty high test scores, but I always felt that teachers were much more valuable in terms of my own motivation and achievement.


Yes. I believe you went into that in your earlier reminiscing, rich teachers had influenced and inspired you the most.

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