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    #168702 - 09/22/13 03:49 PM Re: Weighted Grades [Re: Dandy]
    HowlerKarma Offline

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    Oh-- and for the curious, even if you don't have the sights set on an elite college, every GPA point is worth thousands in merit aid these days. There is a difference of some 5K a year at one regional flagship just going from a 3.75 unweighted to a 3.9+ unweighted. So yeah, that kind of aid money is the difference between going and not to some families.

    Very high stakes for teens with high school grades. Come to think of it, maybe I should donate the $$ to a scholarship endowment just for PG kids.

    Edited by HowlerKarma (09/22/13 03:49 PM)
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

    #168708 - 09/22/13 04:18 PM Re: Weighted Grades [Re: Dandy]
    St. Margaret Offline

    Registered: 12/29/09
    Posts: 250
    I'm an English teacher and I faced the new grading programs we were forced into every few years with trepidation. I think it's very likely the teacher didn't anticipate this effect and hopefully gentle advocacy can help him reconsider. It's also possible there will be a big assignment in maps in the second quarter. Honestly, no one ever really taught me how to manage grades. I had to try to be fair but you don't always know what to anticipate, and you have to have things all laid out in August--tricky! I did try to match time/effort with weight and actually the percentages helped a LOT because I knew that kids could affect their grades and I didn't have to play with numbers of points ridiculously. I knew that final test would be worth something, instead of letting a kid who turned in average homework always coast through without demonstrating certain key skills were mastered. Respectful discussion calling this to his attention and asking about future assignments might do the trick. And a kid bringing it up might help him save face and start thinking and then he could present it in a letter home... yeah. Good luck!

    #168711 - 09/22/13 05:21 PM Re: Weighted Grades [Re: Dandy]
    indigo Offline

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 5215
    Originally Posted By: Dandy
    Equity, in the educational sense, has sometimes been compared with a golf handicap, being a system which makes it easier for a less skilled/talented/accomplished person to compete with a more skilled/talented/accomplished individual.

    By contrast most competitions are run by the philosophy, "May the best one win."

    The grading discussed may not seem fair or equal, but may be considered by some to be "equitable." It depends upon what the teacher/school/program is trying to accomplish.

    #168834 - 09/23/13 01:25 PM Re: Weighted Grades [Re: Dandy]
    HowlerKarma Offline

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    So someone explain this to me--

    A single graded discussion* (meaning-- threaded, bulletin-board style) is worth more to my daughter's grade in German II than any of the course's five midterm exams. Worth more, in fact, than ANY other graded item save the final exam.

    (The final is worth 11.6% of the student's semester grade... this single discussion-- is 7.1% of it.)

    Remember, this is a cumulative final examination, which should probably include 40 or so multiple choice questions, 5-10 short-answer questions (some with listening features), and an essay or two.

    * Go to the discussion board and post at least five sentences about things you did yesterday. Also, ask your classmates about things they did, ate, etc. using the German past tense.

    This is the kind of nonsense that weighted, category-distributed grading leads to in more cases than I have energy to describe at this moment. My daughter, being no fool so far as math and percentages goes, realizes full well that a C on that ONE assignment just made it imperative that she earn about 98% on everything else in that course in order to maintain an A. Oh, and no weighting on this class, so an A- would really sting. The students get 1/2 hour of live instruction with a teacher... every two weeks. Really not kidding.

    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

    #168838 - 09/23/13 01:59 PM Re: Weighted Grades [Re: HowlerKarma]
    Val Offline

    Registered: 09/01/07
    Posts: 3296
    Loc: California
    HK, that's just plain ridiculous.

    IMO, this approach to structuring course grades is designed to give poor-performing students a chance to get an A. That way, everyone can fail at go to college!

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