Professor Allows Students to Choose Own Grades for ‘Stress Reduction’

Discussion in 'Education' started by basquebromance, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. basquebromance
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    basquebromance Gold Member

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  2. Xelor
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    Xelor Gold Member

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    Why, on August 9th, did Ms. Timpf and the National Review remarking on Rick Watson's former grading policy?

    Also, why, now that it's August 11th, OP-er, are you raising the issue? Do you not fully read the articles and supporting material you cite? I realize you may not, but merely as a matter of discursive integrity, you could at least state that you didn't follow the reference material linked in Ms. Timpf's essay.

    All I did was read her essay and follow the links. Doing so resulted in my discovering the story was originally reported by the CSC Media Group on August 6th and the U. of Georgia's B-School dean on August 8th, if not sooner, removed the policy from the professor's syllabus.


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    I, like the U of Georgia's B-School dean, you and likely myriad others, agree Dr. Watson's "choose your own grade" policy was ridiculous and antithetical to the point of one's participating in a college-degree-seeking program. Dr. Ayers did the right thing by altering Watson's grading policy.


    Anecdotal aside:
    One might wonder why Prof. Watson's syllabus was permitted to be issued with the grading policy it initially promulgated. That it was strikes me as a flaw in the school's administrative review process.

    I have encountered flaws of a somewhat similar cause -- inaptly performed administrative review processes -- that were manifested in syllabi shown to me by two other recent collegians, one of whom is my daughter. The flaws in hers and another student's case were mistakes regarding the edition of required texts, vague statements about the nature and extent to which a given text would be used in the course and vague or ambiguous summary statements of assignment due date and lecture discussion topics, and incomplete descriptions of the grade-weighting of each assignment in calculating a student's final grade.

    To date, not one college/university for which I've spoken with the administrators/deans lacks a documented administrative quality and control protocol that stipulates that every professor's/instructor's syllabus be reviewed by the relevant department head or dean's (assistant dean's) designee. I would be surprised to learn that U. of Georgia does not have a similar policy and procedure. Accordingly, the questions to ask Dean Ayers are:
    • Does the Terry School have a policy for reviewing syllabi before they are delivered to students?
    • If the school has such a policy, do it implement procedures in support of it?
    • Are the people tasked with performing the procedures capable of doing so in accordance with the schools standards? Do they know what the school's standards and guiding principles are?
    • Do the people tasked with performing those procedures actually perform them?
    • If they did perform them for Dr. Watson's syllabus, how did the statements about "choose your own grade" pass muster?
    Obviously all schools presumably have high standards. What distinguishes schools is the nature, extent and timing with which they implement and adhere to those stated standards. Obviously, even with the highest standards and most rigorous implementation of them, mistakes and lapses will happen.

    The occasional and innocuous or minor mistake is not a thing to grouse about; however, "choose your own grade" is, in an academic context, neither minor nor innocuous. That said, the Terry School dean quickly resolved the issue prior to this thread's creation; thus why is it for you now an issue?​
     
  3. anotherlife
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    anotherlife Gold Member

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    If I was the professor, I would allow it too. The professor gets paid from the student loans ultimately. So if the student drops out, the professor will be badly scolded or fired, for reducing college revenues. Also, this is a business school, and in business school, it is ancient knowledge, that you don't go there for the knowledge, you go there for your future business contacts.
     

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