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Wednesday, May 3, 2006
  No Breathing

I’m so mad I make myself want to puke.  The worst part is that I’m probably working myself up over nothing, but it doesn’t feel that way.  In my Archaeology class, the professor handed back our research papers on Monday.  About 10-15 people were told that their final grade was on their paper (an A) and they would not have to write the 4-6 page final exam essays like everyone else in the class.  That fracking pisses me off.  It would be differant if it said in the syllabus that the final exam is optional, or something like that, but this feels so arbitrary.  Let me explain further.

In the class there are a possible 400 points, 2 exams worth 100 a piece, 5 activities worth 10 points a piece, 1 research paper worth 50 points, and a 100 point final exam (take home, 2 essays worth 50 points each.) There has been a total of 15 points worth of extra credit offered over the course of the semseter and 5 points of extra credit offered on each of the 2 previous exams.  That means if a student right now had earned every point possible they would have earned 325 points.  The grading in the class is easy, divide points earned by points possible, that’s your grade.  So to earn an A in the class, you need 360 points.  325 points is a B, not an A.  The professors argument is that even if the students failed the final they would still earn an A, but that’s not accurate.  The fact is that these students till have to turn in the final and earn atleast 35 points to maintain their grade and that’s if by some miracle they have earned every point up till now.  By the Professors own admission when I spoke with him, the highest grade a student had at this point as 310 points.  That means the student would have to earn atleast 50 points to get an A, not 0!

I think what upsets me most about this is that students like me who have come every day and done all the work, but have not earned every possible point nor turned in every extra credit oppurtinity were not given any option to take our current grade and not take the final.  Right now I’m at 260 points.  I earned full credit on the research paper and most of the essay questions on the 2 previous tests.  He told us flat out that the grading is competely subjective on this test and as long as we address all his questions we will earn full credit.  So that means I can very well get out of the class with an A, but I wasn’t even offered the oppurtunity to take my B and leave. That pisses me off!

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I know you don’t know me and vice versa, but I happened to read this entry (I’ve browsed your site before) and I HAD to say something.  I’m really sorry you’re in this situation, I’ve had teachers like that and it’s not something I particularly like to work with.  Hang in there. :/
Posted By: Gibson Starkweather
Yeah, it kinda stank, but actually it did turn out alright.  Talked with the teacher and what not, no more anger, just understanding.  As a future educator I don’t think I would ever take such measures in my class, but I unmderstand now why this professor did.  When you have lemons, add some sugar and make lemonade or something right
Posted By: Brian Hartvigsen
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Location: Boise, Idaho, United States

My borg designation is 2 of 7. My parents raised me LDS, but I'm atheist. My wife loves me, my kids think about it. My dog thinks I abandoned her and sleeps on the couch.


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