The students in Washington State, USA, until just a few years ago, took that state’s standardized test, the WASL, at several grade levels throughout their enrollment in WA’s public school systems. Unlike those budding young Chinese physicists, these students, these American spent an entire school year preparing for this test and only this test, and many of those students failed to pass the tests. Would they have passed them if they had been publicly humiliated or beaten by their parents and teachers? I doubt that corporal punishment, fear of failure or being held back a year, instead of advancing to the next grade, or peer pressure would have improved their test scores. I spoke with several students who had taken the test and they told me, that as soon as the testing was completed, they’d forget most, if not all, of what they’d learned that year.