Conferences and Workshops
Ask the Grade Doctor
Contact Me

Ask The Grade Doctor

Full Question Detail

Return to All Questions


I am a computer programming major in college; I would like to
think I'm doing well in my C++II class; but I'm starting to
question that. I had a 92% in the class, then I had a bad quiz
grade due to mostly miscommunication about the quiz content. The
majority of the class believed it was going to be able the next
chapter in our text book, as they always are; so everyone studied
and practiced teh content of that chapter. But when we started the
quiz, it turns out the quiz was actually over something completely
unrelated to the chapter, a topic which wasn't even covered in the
text book; but in an separate PDF file tucked away in our course
information. Most of the class failed the quiz, I got a 30%. My
grade dropped to an 85%. I've worked hard to make up for that low
quiz grade, gotten As and Bs on all my assignments since then,
including two more quizzes, but I still only have gotten it up to
an 87%.

So, my questions is: Why is it so hard to raise a grade, than it
is to drop a grade? If quizzes are weighted evenly, how come one
bad quiz dropped 7 points, but two good quizzes only raised it 2



I don't know all the details but basically because the mean is skewed by outlier scores. If
most students fail a quiz/test those scores shouldn't be included in grades. Also if a
student has outlier scores the grade should be determined by the median or mode. (this
is based on what I learned in 5th grade arithmetic!)