Who Really Failed?
I absolutely love this story.
The biology professor at Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge gives brief quizzes at the beginning of every class, to assure attendance and to make sure students are doing the reading. On her tests, she doesn’t use a curve, as she believes that students must achieve mastery of the subject matter, not just achieve more mastery than the worst students in the course. For multiple choice questions, she gives 10 possible answers, not the expected 4, as she doesn’t want students to get very far with guessing.
Students in introductory biology don’t need to worry about meeting her standards anymore. LSU removed her from teaching, mid-semester, and raised the grades of students in the class.
Later in the article, Stuart Rojstaczer, a former Duke University professor asked, “How many times has Dean Carman removed a professor from a class who was giving more than 90 percent As?” Check out his website, gradeinflation.com.
This is a big problem. By grading on participation rather than knowledge, teachers just pass the buck to the next teacher. Students go through school not really learning anything, but hey they have great self-wroth right? As a student, I see people that don’t know how to write a clear and concise paragraph on a discussion topic. We had a book report to do with two questions; Summarize and what did you learn. Some people couldn’t even do that much.
I think the problem is both school officials and students are lazy. Students don’t really care to actually learn. They are only there to get that piece of paper, so an employer will give them a job. They don’t want a grade they want their 3 credits. Think about this; education is the only service in which the consumers demand LESS for their money. School Administration doesn’t want anything to be too hard, because they know the next school is more than willing to grade on a curve and give those students their 3 credits. That way they can get put on the list of “good” schools and get more students and more importantly more government money.
I loved this chart from gradeinflation.com
See how high Harvard is up there? Does it come to no surprise then, that our Harvard elected officials in Government didn’t see the financial mess from happening?