Assessing beyond an Escape Room

One San Jose private school has come up with a unique solution: The Harker School, self-described as “one of the nation’s top college prep schools,” is putting teams of sixth grade applicants through a virtual escape room. Over a Zoom call, the 11-year-olds work together to solve a series of Harker-themed puzzles, and admissions officers observe their behavior.

Source: A Silicon Valley school is using virtual escape rooms to evaluate prospective students – The Verge

The idea of using an escape room to evaluate prospective students is an ok idea, but not enough for me to share the article. What I found that was really cool was this:

There are also some Easter eggs built into the game that can help differentiate students with sophisticated knowledge. One of the locker combinations was “24601” — “Ah, Les Mis,” I remarked upon discovery. That’s apparently something Harker is watching for. “It’s a way to help the staff … get a feel for how broad an applicant’s experience is,” Warner says.

As a fan of the Marvel, I love Easter Eggs. As a fan of schools though, this shows that students can have the knowledge and skills to complete a task, but still not understand everything in the task.

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