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Author Topic: no good deed goes unpunished  (Read 5093 times)
mountainguy
The no longer carbonated
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« on: April 18, 2012, 11:27:08 AM »

Grrrrrr.  Against my better judgment, I'm allowing students to retake an online quiz they all did poorly on. The CMS will automatically average the new score with the old score. So far, I've had emails two students best summarized as "but what haaaaaaapens if my new score is lowwwwwwer?? That won't be faaaaaaair!"

No real advice needed here; I'm just venting.
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dr_alcott
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« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2012, 12:01:36 PM »

I can just hear the whining, Mountainguy.

I can contribute two good yet punished deeds:

Earlier this week, I reduced the reading assignment for today's class. I notified students via email and CMS. Instead of thanks, I get complaints: "But I read the whooooole thiiiiing!" Never mind that that means they're ahead for the next class's reading. It's just not fair.

I gave students two options for the next assignment; they get to pick one. "But I thought we had to do both! I did all that extra work! You won't grade both?"
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nucleo
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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2012, 12:10:36 PM »

Hearing that a new chair was struggling with a complex task that I have done for my department for many years, I offered help through a third party. 

Phone call:  "So did you offer help because you think I'm incompetent?"

<sigh>
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pollinate
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« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2012, 12:27:05 PM »

Hearing that a new chair was struggling with a complex task that I have done for my department for many years, I offered help through a third party.  

Phone call:  "So did you offer help because you think I'm incompetent?"

<sigh>

Ouch.  Two things do come to mind - your chair is stressed and feeling incompetent, thus the defensiveness AND/OR third party phrased things very poorly (deliberately?  only you might know) when relaying your offer.  Next time, make the offer in person.

MG, do they HAVE to retake the quiz?  If not, tell them to just sit pat with the current score if they're worried getting about a lower one.  Or, you could point out that actually studying before taking it should automatically prevent a lower score.  ;)
« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 12:30:41 PM by pollinate » Logged
polly_mer
practice makes perfect
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2012, 12:31:09 PM »

I'm feeling good this week since I've been religiously practicing STFU and not giving any students a break on anything.
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oldfullprof
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« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2012, 12:48:35 PM »

I'm feeling good in this, my second to last week of full time teaching, and am NSTFU and have turned into Mr Laxity.
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Taste o' the Sixties
geonerd
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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2012, 1:49:09 PM »

"Then work to make sure your do-over score is higher. Of course, we can just keep the original low score. You don't have to take advantage of your second chance. It's your decision."
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theritas
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2012, 2:25:42 PM »

Grrrrrr.  Against my better judgment, I'm allowing students to retake an online quiz they all did poorly on. The CMS will automatically average the new score with the old score. So far, I've had emails two students best summarized as "but what haaaaaaapens if my new score is lowwwwwwer?? That won't be faaaaaaair!"  No real advice needed here; I'm just venting.

Somehow this cleared up for me that our students think the word "fair" means 'things working out in their favor'. 
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larryc
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2012, 3:09:57 PM »

"Don't retake this test unless you study some more or your grade probably will be lower."
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melba_frilkins
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« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2012, 3:46:58 PM »

I'm afraid I'm at fault on this one. I let my students take the online quizzes an unlimited number of times and only the highest score counts. (They are low point value and intended as practice for the exam, so I like to encourage them to try again and again with no risk).
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kaysixteen
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« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2012, 4:43:44 PM »

1) In high school, etc., they have been taught that 'fairness' is to be expected, and their parents have reinforced this demand with appropriate pressure on teachers and adminiscritters.

2)WRT that chair, perhaps he IS incompetent...
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kshenko
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« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2012, 5:03:07 PM »

Wait, OP gave his/her students the option of retaking the test if they wished to redeem themselves.  S/he was being totally nice!  Their reaction is completely inappropriate...

I have one, too.  A colleague was up for tenure and I didn't really need more publications because I had just been promoted.  So, I told her that I would put her name on my manuscript, which was in the revise-and-resubmit phase (in an attempt to justify her authorship, I gave her the manuscript to proofread and edit).  The manuscript was accepted with this colleague being the 2nd author.

She sat in my office and told me that she was disappointed in me because I "took" the first authorship and that I had misled her.  Uh, your name wouldn't have been there AT ALL, and I did you a favor, remember??????  Did you really expect to be the first author when all you did was proofread?


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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2012, 5:09:57 PM »

Psst, Mountainguy is definitely male for the purposes of these fora.  Yes, the student is being a nudnik for looking the gift horse in the mouth.

I'm afraid I'm at fault on this one. I let my students take the online quizzes an unlimited number of times and only the highest score counts. (They are low point value and intended as practice for the exam, so I like to encourage them to try again and again with no risk).

Well, if we're confessing, then I might be contributing to that problem even more.  For practice-for-the-tests quizzes, students get full credit if they take the quiz at least once and get at least one question right.  Full credit in this case is a nice big number that looks impressive until one does the math to discover that 50 points is less than 1% of the number of points for an A.

However, that's counterbalanced by the unit quizzes where your last attempt is your score.  So, sure, take it multiple times, but the average is above 5 tries to get full credit and giving up on a crummy score means you failed yourself.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 5:10:46 PM by polly_mer » Logged

I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
dr_starbucks
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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2012, 5:23:14 PM »

Grrrrrr.  Against my better judgment, I'm allowing students to retake an online quiz they all did poorly on. The CMS will automatically average the new score with the old score. So far, I've had emails two students best summarized as "but what haaaaaaapens if my new score is lowwwwwwer?? That won't be faaaaaaair!"

No real advice needed here; I'm just venting.


Can the CMS be set to automatically record the highest grade from multiple attempts?  Both Sakai and Moodle has the option I think.  Not sure about Blackboard. 

But yes, grumbling is a common response to my actions of generosity near the end of the term.
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formerly Lukeurig
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« Reply #14 on: April 25, 2012, 9:53:19 AM »

If you give an inch, they take a mile...
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