A high-stakes test is any test whose scores are used to reveal school and teacher effectiveness and make punishment, accolade, advancement, or compensation decisions about students, educators, schools, or districts (Great Schools Partnership, 2014).
Examples of high stakes tests include standardized state testing mandated by No Child Left Behind or the SAT.
Advantages: High-stakes test results can be used to help teachers plan future learning based on a child's results. Furthermore, the data is always publicly available and repeated exposure to high-stakes tests can help students develop better test-taking skills (Munoz, 2014).
Disadvantages: High-stakes tests can cause untested subjects and content to be pushed aside to make room for test prep. The pressure on teachers to produce good results can stifle teacher creativity and innovation (Munoz, 2014).