Grades and Tests May Miss Measuring What Matters Most in Learning

Grades and Tests May Miss What Matters Most in Learning 1

Melanie Burford for The Chronicle

"Deep approaches" to learning figure prominently in the new edition of the National Survey of Student Engagement.

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Melanie Burford for The Chronicle

"Deep approaches" to learning figure prominently in the new edition of the National Survey of Student Engagement.

As pressure mounts on colleges to document what their students learn, it remains tough to judge from outside the classroom how much knowledge they gain from their academic experience.

The traditional measure of learning is the course grade. Nothing says academic success more succinctly than an A.

But an A is subjective. Skeptics note that course requirements vary depending on the professor, the department, and the institution. Grades are often inflated.

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