Sunday, May 21, 2006

Two Quick Stories About Students And Their Silly Grades

An intro to literature student asked me to doublecheck his grade on the final. He said he only remembered missing one question, not four. He said he didn't have time to walk to my office to pick up the graded exam and double check it himself, but could I please doublecheck it? He's really close to getting an A, he said.

A senior creative writing major turned in seven pages of poetry for her senior thesis, which was supposed to consist of a fifteen to twenty page sequence of poems. I gave her a D, and she argued that the grade should be raised because there were no grammatical errors in her poems. She argued that I was grading her on quantity rather than quality. I invited her to complete the rest of her pages by joining a group of independent study students over the summer. I told her I'd raise the grade after she completed the five week workshop and turned her seven pages into at least fifteen pages of good poems. No reply.

I find that usually students want their grades raised, but not if it means doing extra work - or walking.