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    #207354 - 12/09/14 02:52 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    Not surprising. I don't recall seeing a comparable point made about Brown or Dartmouth - not that there isn't grade inflation there too. Grade inflation is ubiquitous, I think.

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    #207356 - 12/09/14 03:28 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 75west]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4225
    Originally Posted By: cdfox
    Grade inflation is ubiquitous, I think.
    Evidently some lesser-well-known colleges and universities still grade rather stringently, considering this to be a positive means of demonstrating their institution's academic rigor.

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    #207365 - 12/09/14 07:15 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 75west]
    bluemagic Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/29/13
    Posts: 1489
    Originally Posted By: cdfox
    I don't know if this has been commented on up thread, but some local g/t kids are taking courses at Harvard Extension around age 14/15. Also, it looks like kids outside of the Boston area are potentially able to enroll in courses, or even in a MA program, at Harvard Extension online.

    Eugenie de Silva completed a MA through Harvard Extension online (http://eugeniedesilva.com/eugenie-carys-de-silva). I don't know how common that method, but notice Eugenie is enrolled now in a PhD program through Leicester U (UK) online too.

    Yes, Harvard Extension isn't Harvard. That's a given. However, it might provide some challenge that so many of us are searching for with our kids and be doable for some needing a more non-traditional path. From what I've heard, many of the faculty at Harvard or nearby colleges/universities teach at Harvard Extension and it's a small pittance of the tuition too.
    While I do know people who have said that Harvard Extension is quite a good way to go. And more than a few that have taken classes from them. I really doubt that many of their classes are taught by Harvard full faculty. Most extension classes at our local university are taught by adjunts, lectures and graduate students, and only occasionally faculty but usually younger who are looking for extra money. I have taken classes through it, on & off and I never had a class from a tenure professor. Full faculty usually have their hands full teaching their classes and getting their research done.

    And yes.. someone posted a while back about a Thanksgiving program for high school kids at MIT. (fairly sure it was MIT not Harvard.) I don't have a link close to hand, but I think they have programs at other times of the year as well. Looked really interesting and in high demand. I gave it a good look. But I wasn't going to pay to fly my kid cross-country to attend them. I do have Boston relatives and my older daughter is in university in the Boston area, so it's not as crazy an idea as it initially seems.


    Edited by bluemagic (12/09/14 07:16 PM)

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    #207366 - 12/09/14 07:20 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: bluemagic]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4225
    Originally Posted By: bluemagic
    Thanksgiving program for high school kids at MIT.
    MIT Splash!

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    #207500 - 12/10/14 07:29 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    (bump)
    _________________________
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

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    #207516 - 12/10/14 08:54 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    From what I've heard, MIT Splash is very stringent with the age requirement/grade level. I've heard that will NOT accept any un/homeschoolers who are younger and doing 7/8th or 9/12th grade regardless.

    From a parental perspective, it's very annoying and frustrating to have a pg/2e child who is denied from these programs (and others) based on age.

    Locally, MIT also has workshops for kids - http://edgerton.mit.edu/. Again, they're very stringent with ages and grades. A couple of years ago, I was told that they want to see "physical years on the planet" and not how many grades ahead they may be.

    This brings me back to Eugenie. I've yet to see many other prodigies who are doing their ba/bs or ma/ms online. I could be wrong, but am I correct -
    that 1) most wait until their a bit older to enroll in such a program;
    2) enroll in a physical brick-and-mortar setting;
    3) there's only a handful of schools who will actually accept kids under age 14 as it is.

    I keep getting a lot of closed doors in my face with my pg/2e son and we're in MA! The fact that Harvard Extension actually accepted Eugenie into a master's program was a bright light. Notice, too, that she looked to the UK for the PhD and ultimately enrolled in a program at Leicester U. Yahoo, I say.

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    #207517 - 12/10/14 09:21 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 75west]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2593
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: cdfox
    Not surprising. I don't recall seeing a comparable point made about Brown or Dartmouth - not that there isn't grade inflation there too. Grade inflation is ubiquitous, I think.

    At Brown, grades are not only inflated, F's are invisible -- they don't appear on the transcript. One professor calls this “almost academic fraud."

    Fighting grade inflation: a cause without a rebel
    By Joseph Zappa
    The Brown Daily Herald
    March 12, 2014

    Quote:
    Data provided by the Office of Institutional Research show that 53.4 percent of grades given at the University during the 2012-2013 academic year were As, a 36 percent increase from the 1992-1993 school year, in which As composed 39.1 percent of all grades.

    This percentage would be even higher if the data did not include courses taken on a Satisfactory/No Credit scale.

    ...

    Grade inflation is a “part of a change in culture on the high end of the academy that goes along with students being more and more credentialed,” said Provost Mark Schlissel P’15, adding that students have come to see any grade below an A as unacceptable.

    Students have developed a “sense of entitlement,” said Karen Newman, professor of comparative literature and chair of the department. “They all expect that they will continue to achieve at the high level at which they were achieving in secondary school.”

    But Schlissel said an increasingly talented and prepared student body does not necessarily justify a commensurate rise in As.

    Several faculty members suggested establishing higher expectations for students.

    “Everyone’s coming in within six inches of the ceiling instead of four feet under. Well, let’s raise the ceiling,” said Stephen Nelson, higher education expert and senior scholar in the Leadership Alliance at Brown.

    Though Brown students may be more talented than the average student, “it is still possible to distinguish between performance levels at Brown, and that is what we should be doing to give accurate feedback,” said Luther Spoehr, senior lecturer in education.

    ...

    Several faculty members, as well as Schlissel, cited students’ permission to drop courses until the final exam period as a factor that drives up the percentage of As.

    Another explanation for the lack of Cs and comparatively high number of As is the erasure of failures from a student’s transcript, said David Lindstrom, professor of sociology and chair of the department, calling this policy “almost academic fraud.”

    Lindstrom said students have asked him to fail them rather than give them Cs.

    ...

    “Not being more rigorous in grading doesn’t allow room for the truly and unusually gifted student(s) to distinguish themselves,” Schlissel said.

    Grades have “lost meaning, and that’s a detriment to our students,” he added, noting that “it’s an illusion that grades help you when everybody gets high grades.”

    Grade inflation underprepares students for the harsher evaluation they will encounter in the world beyond Brown, Schlissel said.

    High grades may mislead students into pursuing fields for which they are not well-suited, Nelson added.

    Several people also expressed worry that grade inflation reduces student work ethic.

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    #207518 - 12/10/14 09:44 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    Thanks Bostonian. I know my grandfather would be livid and turning in his grave if he read it but then he use to quahog (clam digging to those outside the MA/RI area) before the Depression to help pay for his tuition at Brown. And he used to take the bus to attend classes at Brown too. We used to joke with him that he'd had to own a whole fleet of seafood companies to pay for Brown before he died, now nearly ten yrs ago.

    Since grade inflation is rampant and pervasive today, then why, oh why, are these colleges and universities so hostile and opposed to enrolling those under age 14-16? Perhaps those under 14-16 would make those who need their grades inflated look bad? Why, really why, wouldn't you let younger kids in who are more than capable of performing without the grade inflation? Maybe I'm missing something?

    I think the key here is on performance. Brown has even admitted that "grades have lost meaning." Well, change the system then. It's no longer a motivation factor for real learning - which un/homeschoolers already know. Duh.

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    #207519 - 12/10/14 09:57 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    gabalyn Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/12
    Posts: 351
    When I was at Brown, the policy of dropping F's from the transcript was celebrated as a means of encouraging experimentation, which is exactly the way the policy worked for me. I was a very motivated student, as was everyone else I knew there. We all worked really hard. There was a fascinating course about human evolution I wanted to take, but it required a lot of advanced math. I was a history major. The professor encouraged me to try it anyway. Well you know what? I failed that class. But I still love that I had the courage to try it. I actually learned a lot from it. I never would have taken it if I were just obsessed with my GPA and the grade really counted. I was there because I was excited about learning, not because I cared so much about grades. Isn't that what we want for our kids?

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    #207520 - 12/10/14 10:09 AM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    Thanks Gabalyn for restoring my hope!!!

    As for HES, yes, as far as I'm aware - many of the same faculty at Harvard teach at HES. I'm not saying every class that's the case, but they same faculty do teach at both. HES also has a number of faculty from neighboring colleges and universities teach their as well. It's part of the 'community' concept of HES. Anyone can scroll through the course offerings and see who's teaching a course.

    Two articles from The Atlantic and Washington Monthly on HES (look at the comments please) - http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/college_guide/blog/the_other_harvard.php
    http://www.theatlantic.com/education/arc...classes/279644/

    One point about HES is that it seems to be more receptive to non-traditional students (ie. pg 14/16-yr-olds or younger) than other colleges and universities and, as a result, it may be an option for some. Perhaps, there might be less grade inflation there as well.

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