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Question

Our District is in the process of implementing a 4 point alpha grade system. Within these 4 alhpha grades lies 16% points. eg; BEG=0-49, DEV=50-66, ACH=67-83, EXC=84-100 What are your thoughts on these broad levels?

2013-04-08
C. Downey
 

The
Grade
Doctor
says:

There is no reason to align levels to fixed percentages, just provide clear descriptions of the
meaning of the levels. To illustrate this think about these examples - 40% is superb for
hitting in baseball and 20% is minimum competence, 70-80% is excellent for free throws in
basketball, 100% is the only acceptable % for pilots landing planes.

 

C.Downey's
Comment

2013-04-10

Could you explain how a student could accurately obtain a percentage when it comes time for
awards, scholarships, and post-secondary, if only using alpha descriptions? Or by using the
levels as decscribed above? Thank you.


The Grade Doctor's
Comment

2013-04-10

I see this as mathematically no different than the current system where most commonly A=4, B=3 and so on and students end up with a cumulative gpa that can (but shouldn't) be calculated to many decimal points. The bottom line is that percentages are incompatible with standards-based learning.


C.Downey's
Comment

2013-04-12

I agree the two systems are not compatible. I understand Post-Secondary schools in
Canada and/or the United States do not except alpha levels (such as exc. ach. beg. dev.)
for enrollment qualifications. Could you give me the advantages why a Junior/High School
would implement alpha grades, if not to support the students future schooling?
Thank you.


The Grade Doctor's
Comment

2013-04-23

Colleges in both countries accept students with AP and IB levels and the US gpa system is basically a system of levels (unfortunately often derived from percentage scores). All levels of K-12 should use clearly described levels with rubrics for assessments because using words to describe performance has meaning and can be used to help students improve while saying a student got 73% has no meaning and cannot help a student get better.

 

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