I am a relatively tough grader, largely because I take sociology seriously and want you to as well. Furthermore, this is an upper-division course. You have many avenues for learning, and I expect you to take advantage of them. Different students will do this differently; the course gives you the freedom to do that. But I do reward quality in the final grades.
A — (4.0) You did everything I could possibly ask of you, and you did it extremely well. You challenged yourself, learned a great deal, and showed conspicuous intelligence. The quality of your work was excellent.
B — (3.0) You did all the work, and you did it well. You worked hard and learned a good deal. The quality of your work was good.
C — (2.0) You did all or almost all of the work. It is clear that you learned a number of things, though those things may not hang together in a systematic and critical understanding of the course material. The quality of your work was adequate.
D — (1.0) You did most of the work. You may have learned some things, but it is not clear that you learned anything important. The quality of your work was less than adequate.
F — (0.0) You did not complete the course requirements at the level expected of college students in this subject area.
(Grades of x.3 and x.7 demonstrate levels of work between these major standards.)
- I score assignments as “Excellent”, “Satisfactory”, “Underdeveloped”, “Limited”, or “Unacceptable”.
- The Moodle gradebook records these as points between 10 and 2 (with 0 for a missing assignment). I use the words so that you will focus on my comments rather than on your score, while still giving you a sense of how your work meets my standards.
- The point system lets Moodle summarize each of the major assignment areas (below). You will thus always know how you are doing overall on this “Excellent”, “Satisfactory”, etc. scale.
- One consequence of this system is that bombing a single assignment will not kill your final course grade. Though it is not terribly easy to earn an 4.0 in this class, it is rather difficult to fail – if you turn in your work.
Like most courses, various assignments count toward different parts of your course grade. Course Leadership counts for 20%; that includes active attendance and both in-class and out-of-class contributions to others’ learning. It specifically includes the four Data Exercises and your comments on other students’ Blog Posts. (See this page for more details.)
Your own weekly Blog Posts count for an additional 5%. I shall score all these for depth, for insight, and for what others can learn from them.
There are five other major assignments, each of which counts for 15% of your course grade. They are:
- Your Personal Learning Contract and Final Reflection Paper.
- Your two Group Book Presentations.
- Your Internship and its accompanying reports.
- Your Teaching Project and its accompanying reports.
- Your Take-Home Exam.
At the end of the semester, you will have the option of adjusting the weight of any of the course elements (except the blog posts) up or down by as much as 5%, so long as the total still adds to 100. This lets you pay more attention to some course elements than to others, as your interests draw you.
For example, you might spend more time on your Internship than is required, and decide to raise it to 20% of your grade. You could then adjust one or more of the other elements down, to compensate. Click HERE to download a grade adjustment form.
You do not need to use this option, but I will not let it hurt you; I shall figure grades twice: once with standard weighting and again with your adjustments. You will earn whichever grade is higher.
Turn in the Grade Adjustment Form on Moodle at the date and time specified on the course schedule.