Several students have asked about grades this week. Let’s start with what I said on pp. 9-10 of the Syllabus:
Your grade is based on the examinations you take, the 15 projects you produce or in which you participate, the formal presentation you make, the critiques you provide of other students’ products and presentations, and your class participation. An A represents Outstanding work; B Above Average; C Average; D Below
Average; F Unacceptable. You must complete all projects ON TIME. Late projects will negatively affect your grade! Dr. Strange will consult with the teaching associates before assigning a final grade.
Everybody starts with an A. If you want to know how to blow that A, just do any of the following and we will probably see you in EDM310 again next semester.
How to blow your A:
1. The failure to satisfactorily complete any of the projects for this course will result in a D or an F and you will have to repeat the course. ALL 15 PROJECTS must be satisfactorily completed to get a grade better than a D in this course. ALL means ALL! In other words, doing 14 (or less) satisfactorily but not 15 projects satisfactorily GUARANTEES that you will get a D or an F for the course.
2. You must correctly complete your Foliotek entries for this course in order to receive a passing grade in this course.
3. You MUST make your weekly posts to your class blog ON TIME (or in advance). Failure to do so will, most likely, result in a VERY POOR (D) grade in this course. DO NOT GET BEHIND IN THIS COURSE!
4. You MUST complete all required posts to your blog INCLUDING the post assigned for May 2, 2010. Failure to do the required post for May 2, 2010 will result in a D or an F in this class.
5. Failure to attend ALL class and lab sessions and the final exam will most likely result in a D or F.
6. Failure to use good grammar, good spelling, and your brain in doing your blog posts will blow your A.
7. Failure to be an active, self-directed learner will also blow that A.
But don’t blow it!
I really don’t like using force to get students to learn. If you are going to be a teacher, you will want your students to WANT to learn. They should not be forced, with threats of bad grades, to learn. I want everyone who takes this class to WANT to make an A and to WANT to do the work that will result in that grade. I want everyone in this class to do A work and get an A! Sadly, that is not the case. The best students do that. The others do not.
It seems to me extremely important that teachers WANT to learn. So if you do not fall into that category, if you are not eager to learn, you should think about a different career!
Now let’s turn to the questionnaire I posted on the Class Blog on Monday February 15 How's My A?. That’s 11 days ago. As of 8 am this morning (2/25/10) 36% of the students still enrolled in EDM310 have not completed that questionnaire. It is, therefore, correct to assume that if final grades were issued today, those who have not answered the questionnaire would not pass this course. I have not closed the questionnaire yet, but I soon will.
Let’s also count. I asked you to do that the first day of class. “ How many times did I say ‘Don’t be late.’ ” So let’s count how may times I said that in the section on grades in the Syllabus. Four. Maybe that was not enough.
Now let’s take a look at what you think about your progress in this course. Nine percent of you think you are not putting forth your best possible effort in EDM310. So...
here are other problem areas where students have not completed their assignments. And these are only those who completed the questionnaire. Forty-seven percent (47%) have not added an RSS feed for the class blog to their iGoogle page. Yes, you can keep up with what is happening on the class blog in other ways. But 29% say they are not reading the class blog daily. That can lead to lots of trouble with that A! Fifteen percent (15%) of those completing the questionnaire said they were behind in their work. So 36% + 15% means that there are far too many shaky or missing As. Forty percent or more have something missing on their blog, or something that does not work. And on it goes.
So what is your grade? You know better than I. Are you participating fully in the educational community I am trying to form in EDM310? Are you putting forth your best effort? Are you doing ALL of your assignments ON TIME? Are you asking for help as soon as you need it? Are you attending all classes and labs? Are you planning ahead, especially for your podcast which starts next week? Are you learning? Are you excited about learning?
You tell me. If Final Grades were distributed tomorrow, what grade would you give yourself? What grade would you give your classmates whose blog posts you read or don’t read because they have not been posted on time?
If you have friends in this course who have not yet understood that I mean it when I say do all your assignments ON TIME, please inform them before it is too late.
And for those of you who are leading the way in creating a wonderful learning community, and I am excited by the fact that this is happening, thank you!
Here is the Preliminary Summary of the Still Have Your A? questionnaire as of 8 am on Thursday February 24, 2010 - eleven days after it was posted on the class blog.
I have been told that should not think that I can undo 15 or so years of schooling which trained you that grades should be your focus and have you suddenly behave like learning was the most important part of being in school. I guess that is correct. But I am going to keep trying!
Can't remember whether you completed the questionnaire? Well... But to make you feel better, I have shared a Google Doc listing all students that had completed the Still Have Your A? Questionnaire by 8 am Thursday 2/25/10. I hope you name is on that list! And by the way, the form reports the exact time you submit the questionnaire in the form of hour:minute:second. Handy for determining exactly what happened when!