Well, those final exams were more painful to grade than I’d hoped. Cumulative, of course. I think the high grade was a midrange C, overall. On the other hand — I can’t remember, did I mention I decided to break the final into sections corresponding to prior tests? And replace terrible test grades any time a section on the final was 80% or above? So, doing well on a particular section could be dramatically helpful even if the overall grade on the final exam wasn’t great.
And that did indeed help a handful of students. Not as many as I would have liked, but at least half a dozen students got a small to moderate boost that way. One young woman appears to have very sensibly studied hard to get a better grade on a particular section. The original test was worth 100 pts, and she replaced a quite terrible grade with a perfectly decent grade on that one.
After grading the final exam and entering the grades, I considered the grades on the gradebook page. THEN I assigned a value to the final extra-credit project, which had been to write 25 exam questions over the semester’s material. (Obviously I was pulling out all the stops to get students to study.) I gave students who did that project from 10 to 20 points or so depending on the quality of the questions and (I must admit) on whether just a tiny little boost might get them from a D to a C. Which it did, in a couple cases.
So … I’d have liked to hand out a couple more B’s than I did. But overall, the final grades are in line with what I think is reasonable.
`1 A, 6 Bs, 7 Cs, 1 D, 2 Fs, and I can offer this advice to all students everywhere, if you decide not to go to class, you REALLY should make sure to drop the class before it’s too late. A handful of students did drop, including, I will add, two students who probably did not need to. I think they would have done all right eventually. Second piece of advice: talk to the instructor before dropping the class. Third piece of advice: if you’re determined to stay in the class, don’t blow it off.
But overall, I’m not too unhappy with these grades. I think they’re higher than would have been reasonable 15 years ago and I think some students are going to find out with some shock that classes can be much, much harder than my class. But … overall, I’m not unhappy.
Also, I read more of At the Feet of the Sun while the students took the exam. I have one snippet to share with you. This line absolutely delighted me:
Sardeet laughed. Cliopher was slightly surprised that flowers did not start blooming at the sound.
Really, that may be one of the most delightful lines I’ve ever encountered.
While on this topic, I also liked this tidbit, which occurs almost immediately after His Radiancy / Fitzroy / Antorin turns up, (and thank you so much for telling me when that would happen, Elise, because that was really helpful in managing my expectations). But here, but be aware THIS CONTAINS A SPOILER, fair warning:
“I am, as you see, quite recovered,” [said Cliopher]. “It was not all that serious, really.”
“Certainly not,” Rhodin agreed, “if you consider causing the entire government to go into the protocol for the unexpected death of its acting head of state not all that serious.”
“I beg your pardon?” his Radiancy snapped, wheeling around to stare at Cliopher even as a wind out of nowhere whipped through the room and scattered all his careful piles of papers.
This is a great scene. I am indeed much happier now that His Radiancy has turned up. Also, I love Basil. And I like the thing about Ludvic’s background.
I didn’t ever read Pali’s story and I really dislike her, but I’m trying to keep an open mind.