Wednesday, December 14, 2011

RBOC: Post-grading

  • Most of my students ended up doing tolerably well, I'm pleased to report.  Most of them, I'd wager, ended up getting pretty much the grades they wanted.  The rest of them got the grades they deserved.
  • We are now in the post-finals grade-grubbing period.  I will never entirely understand why students believe they can get their grades adjusted upward just by asking nicely.  It's not second helpings of pie, kids; it's an evaluation of your performance.  Live with it.
  • Speaking of grade-grubbing, I'm amazed that some students are so self-deluded that they don't understand why they failed.  Look at your grades on Blackboard, you jackass!  How can any of this be a surprise?
  • In one impressive case, a student seemed to believe that zi was destined to pass, despite skipping half the work throughout the semester, and failing almost all of the rest.  All of this is clearly delineated in a web page to which Stu has access.  How does zi not know this?  And whence comes the chutzpah to ask me if I can just give hir a passing grade?  I won't do this for anyone, but it seems additionally bonkers to ask it of a professor for whose class one has exhibited virtually no effort at all.  
  • I feel like I need to vent about this here, because my inclination is not even to dignify the grade-grubbing email with a response.  Partly, this is due to my sense of principle: the grades are published, there's nothing else to be done.  And partly, it's because I fear my own capacity for sarcasm under such circumstances.  I don't know that I'm capable of composing an email to someone who irrationally believes they should pass, in which I point out an almost unbroken chain of disastrous failure leading to a failing grade, without sounding sarcastic about it.


  1. Right on. You are not alone. Which reminds me of something you should watch, if you haven't yet.

  2. "It's not second helpings of pie, kids; it's an evaluation of your performance. Live with it."

    Oh sweet holy Moses, THIS.

  3. Ugh. At least it's all over!

  4. @Ink: That cartoon is terrifyingly close to the reality that I now know.

    @V: Sure hope you're right about that. And welcome to my blog!

  5. What gets me are the ones who, falling a bit short of the desired grade, figure that the last week (or finals week) is the chance to ask if they can do "something extra" -- apparently never dreaming that this would mean their professors also signing up for more work -- over the holidays -- for a student who hadn't done the basics all semester long.

    I bust ass and go the extra mile for every one of my students for 16 weeks. I want week 17 for myself.