Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Grades Updated - Including Blog Posts First Half

I am sorry this took so long to do, but it is now done.  Let me explain where we are:

1.  The Excel Homework scores are now all correct.  There were a maximum of 40 possible points here for the tutorial, efficiency and equity concepts, strategic approach to efficiency, and coordination mechanisms.  Each submitted homework gives 10 points.

2.  For the quiz that was just to try out Moodle quizzes, for everyone who did them I gave the full 10 points, even if you got something wrong.   The content was not relevant to the course, so I rewarded doing it.

3.  The actual quiz was auto graded in Moodle.  That had a 50 points max.

4.  The last thing I did, which took quite a while, was to assign points for the blog posts and to give comments on how to improve your blogging in the second half.   There were 150 points max.  Nobody got all the points but I believe I was pretty generous overall.  The average was not quite 125 points.  In coming up with this I relied more on getting the work in regularly (or not) than on the quality of what you posted.  Truthfully, it is too early to grade your on quality.  You are still getting your feet wet with the blogging.  Post quality will matter more in the second half allocation of points.

Do note that this.  In the second half I will not accept any posts that I do not see by Sunday evening at 6 PM, unless the student has contacted me ahead of time to explain some issue of why the post is late.  As I said in class yesterday, it is just too hard for me to track the late posts and keep up with the class.  I hope with this to encourage everyone to get their posts in on time.


The upshot is that 240 real points have been allocated and then 10 points more for that one little quiz in Moodle to test out the functionality.  So that is almost one quarter of the points in the course.  Based on that you should be able to track how you are doing.  I know you care about grades, a lot.  Though I am definitely not as wise as King Solomon, my hope with this approach is to encourage all students to put in their best effort in the second half.


Now let me conclude with an ethical dilemma, which is about comments on the blogs and what it says about that in the syllabus.  Some of you have done that with some energy.  Others have not done it at all.  I am not sure why.  What I'd like to encourage is that people do comment with energy for the rest of the class.  So for the time being, I have not assigned these grades.  (It says 75 points in the grade book.)

If I graded by the book the people who haven't commented at all would get zero, meaning they'd really get slammed.  I see little good in that.  However, I don't want to ignore the effort of those students who have been commenting in earnest.

So I've been thinking about giving every student some base level of points, B, and then awarding the remaining 75 - B points on a performance basis.  Doing this is NOT IN THE SYLLABUS.  So it should be considered by the class.

I do want to point out that I don't grade on a curve.  Your own grade is not impacted up or down by the performance of your classmates.  I hope you understand that as you consider this alternative approach to grading the comments for the first half.

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