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Finals Are NOT Supposed to be Surprising

 Written by    March 19, 2011

There’s going to be a little bit of ranting here.  But there just seems to be something wrong with professors who believe that “too many of the students did too well on the midterms…  so the final will be much harder!”

As you may have surmised, Finals Week in the world of Rob did not go exactly according to plan.

No, I am not looking to assign blame here.  In general, I love my professors and they have been a GREAT help to me on my path through engineering.

And yet.

Today, I rant.

In several of my classes (no names; let’s not get too personal here), I was doing quite well.  Like, got-solid-high-A’s-on-the-midterms, quizzes, and homeworks-levels of well.  By no means did I expect to achieve an A in these classes without fantastic finals as well; everyone knows that a final can make or break your grade.

What I DID expect, however, was that the finals would accurately reflect the classes and how they had been run throughout the quarter.  Yes, I thought the midterms were easy, as did most of the class.  But perhaps that just means the professor has been teaching well.  Or maybe we’re all just having a great quarter.

Instead, several of my professors decided that they needed to make the finals harder.  I feel like waiting until the very last, most major grade to suddenly increase the difficulty of the class is a little unfair.

Lo and behold, when the final grades came out today, the students in these classes (many of whom, like me, has excellent A’s going in to Finals Week) suddenly bombed the final and got a mediocre quarter grade.

I promise I studied.  I really did.  And I promise that I put in a great deal of time and effort preparing.

But when the decision is made to make a last-minute difficulty adjustment to the class, well, there’s just not a lot I can do.  It should tell you something when the class averages for the midterms were high 80-something percent, but the final class average was a 50-something percent.

Alright, that’s enough ranting for one day.

99% of the time I absolutely love my instructors.  But every now and again, I shake an angry metaphorical fist.  Grrrrr.

Take care,
Rob

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One Response

  1. Avatar Anthony says:

    I guess your class learned a valuable lesson in overachieving as a whole.

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