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A Few Choice Tips...

....for my former Intro to Linguistics students about the grading policy.

  1. Being shocked that you have a C in the class weeks after the semester is over and you had all your grades available to you will earn you no sympathy.

  2. Crying about how you would have brought me doctor's notes for all the classes you skipped....er, missed...if you had but known that participation counted for five points in the class will cause me to raise an eyebrow at you. Particularly since the participation aspect has been mentioned in class dozens of times and posted on the class web page since the first day. And you would have had to have been sick for oh...10 of the 13 weekly sessions. And you wouldn't have thought to email me before the very end of the semester, of course. Riiiiight.

  3. Feigning (or perhaps actually experiencing) puzzlement at your grade because you "did so well on the exams!" (which were worth only half the total grade, as was published on the class website) will also earn you no points. Especially if you never came to class, failed the homeworks, and submitted a barely adequate paper.

  4. Whining about how you would have participated in the extra credit experiment but the guy didn't email you back so you dropped it will also result in a frosty response. Particularly if this is the fifth email to me about your grade, thus proving that you're quite capable of pursuing email contact when you so choose.

  5. Wheedling for an extra point because you "tried" will cause boiling irritation and seal your grade's fate.

That is all.


( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 29th, 2004 01:26 pm (UTC)
I've often felt that if certain students (i.e.: the ones that come towards the end, or after the semester is done) spent as much time doing the work during the semester as they did coming up with excuses, they wouldn't need those excuses :)

I had a student show up after grades were posted once saying that he could not understand how he got a D. I asked him what his grades were on the exams and quizzes. He didn't know - he had never picked up any of them up and I wasn't posting grades for that class that semester.
Dec. 29th, 2004 02:04 pm (UTC)
Nice. Reeeal nice. :-)

I suggest that you explain some of these things to your students. But I guess that's just inappropriate, and might be frowned upon. As a fallback, print out pictures of the offenders and throw darts at them. Or, in more extreme cases, use WD-40 and a lighter.
Dec. 29th, 2004 08:36 pm (UTC)
I could add a few more with my list of complaints, but yours are more nicely worded.

I have not forgotten you, my dear Jalen! The Lion in Winter and Rat Race will be ours to enjoy. How is next week for you?
Dec. 31st, 2004 11:37 am (UTC)
Next week sounds sensible. Maybe Thursday?
Jan. 3rd, 2005 07:34 am (UTC)
Thursday sounds great!
Jan. 5th, 2005 11:28 am (UTC)
Excellent - when did you want to pop over?
Jan. 5th, 2005 02:02 pm (UTC)
How about early afternoon, like 1 or 2? Cann you call me (240-505-2479) and give me your address? (I accidently lost the message which had your number in it.)
Dec. 30th, 2004 03:59 am (UTC)
Additional thought. Add to the syllabus next time a line that reads something like, "Anyone whining about their grade for an unjustified reason will have their final grade lowered by 5 points."
Dec. 31st, 2004 11:37 am (UTC)
Quite tempting. [grin]
Dec. 30th, 2004 07:01 am (UTC)

People actually do this? Had I ever exhibited such a lack of dignity or resolution in any of my courses I would never be able to show my face around that department again. I always thought stories like this were made to make students laugh and be wary of course policies; not that they actually happened!

Dec. 30th, 2004 01:22 pm (UTC)
Yes, people actually do this.

They also come towards the end of the term or after the final and say things like, "I really need to get a(n) ___" (where you fill in the non-failing grade of your choice) "because if I don't, then ________." (where you fill in something like _I'll lose a scholarship_, _I'll get kicked off the team_, _my parents will stop paying my tuition_, etc.)

Yes, people actually do this.
Dec. 30th, 2004 01:39 pm (UTC)
::rolls eyes:: because we ALL know guilt is a better way to a passing grade than oh I don't know-STUDYING.

Sheesh. The thought to do that to any of my undergrad professors (and now my grad professors) never crossed my mind. Wonder if it ever works, for how popular it is. Hope it doesn't; makes those of us who actually work for our grades look bad. Or feel bad, take your pick. >_
Dec. 31st, 2004 11:38 am (UTC)
Hope it doesn't; makes those of us who actually work for our grades look bad. Or feel bad, take your pick. >_<

Exactly so - even if I was somehow magically moved by their whining (in scary alterna-world), it would be wickedly unfair to everyone else who actually earned the grade they ended up with.
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )


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Jalen Strix

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