Grouping Students By Ability In School: Benefit or Drawback?


Gayda Makki
November 18th, 2020

Most students at Glasgow are categorized by their abilities and skills. There are many different types of groups you might be a part of. For example, AA classes and honor classes, which are both meant to give students a chance to receive a challenge. Some people believe that grouping students might damage their self-esteem, while others feel it would give advanced students a way to flourish and display their magnificent skills.

The self-esteem of a student always has an effect on the amount of perseverance put into the work. For example, if a student who struggles in science is partnered up with a student who has incredible science skills, the lesser skilled of the two will get intimidated. However, when that same student is partnered with a student of the same ability, they are equally willing to learn and improve their skills without competition. Both of these interesting theories might not be true, but they do have one thing in common and that is grouping students in a particular way will, in fact, affect them mentally if not academically. Computers are also a part of this impact. Teachers are slowly becoming comfortable using self-paced lessons for their students. Students are usually placed with people who are around their area of comprehension and capability.

Most students have varied needs and potential, grouping students is a simple way to solve this antagonism. It is also a practical solution that emerged to convey the demand for disparate abilities in various classrooms. This system is in favor of the “No Child Left Behind” (NCLB) act of 2002. This act requires the educational authority to test students in math and reading from grades 3-8, and once more in high school. This act is meant to help track their academic progress through these specific years.


A recent poll showed that 48.7% of students have been grouped in school based on their abilities and/or skills. You may think this is a small number now, but this quantity is constantly increasing. Does this relatively increasing number impact you for the better or for worse?