midterm exams (need advice)....

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by GTB4GT, Dec 9, 2013.

  1. GTB4GT

    GTB4GT Cohort

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    Dec 9, 2013

    I am debating on this issue with some of my math classes

    the issue...I am tempted to telling my math classes that if they pass the midterm they will pass the first semester. I have several kids who I believe are capable of doing passing work but they will not devote any time outside of class to doing HW, preparing for tests, etc. Will this give them incentive to prepare?

    fwiw, the midterm is pretty comprehensive. they will not be able to fake their way through it. Also, I can prepare enough versions so they can't cheat their way through it either. The only way to pass is to go back and refresh, relearn or learn the material.Would you do this (BTW, I had several college professors who would do this - if you could demonstrate mastery of the material on the final exam you would pass the course).

    otoh, I do not want to encourage future students to slack off thru the first half hoping to hit a 'home run" on an exam.

    comments? (either pro or con are welcome)

    and, Merry Christmas wishes to all during this season.
     
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  3. RadiantBerg

    RadiantBerg Cohort

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    Dec 9, 2013

    It wouldn't be allowed at my school. That said, if you are allowed, I would consider some variant of that. Maybe tell them that if their score on the midterm is significantly higher than their average otherwise, you will weight the midterm higher than otherwise. This way, you don't just excuse all other grades, but you do reward the greater efforts.

    Ex:

    Say it is normally 65% tests/quizzes, 25% classwork/homework, and 10% midterm. (I don't know what it normally is for you!!)

    Tell them if they really show mastery on the MT, you will calculate it as, say 55% tests/quizzes, 20% classwork/homework, and 25% midterm instead.
     
  4. Ms.SLS

    Ms.SLS Cohort

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    Dec 10, 2013

    In the past, I've weighted a midterm/final so that if you get an "A" on the test, it will raise you one letter grade. I felt that if a student is able to demonstrate enough knowledge to get an A on the final exam, they know enough to get their "F" bumped to a "D" or whatever it was.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 10, 2013

    We don't have that option-- our trimesters are worth exactly a third of their report card grade.
     
  6. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Dec 10, 2013

    No, I would not, for the exact reason you mentioned - the students will slack off even more next semester assuming the same option will be allowed then.

    I do something like that with my final though. I tell certain failing students, the ones that have no mathematical hope of passing otherwise, that if they can master the information by the end of the year, I'll give them the lowest passing grade. But they must master it. Mastering it is not merely passing the final exam. I need to see at least a C on the final exam for me to consider doing it.
     
  7. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Dec 10, 2013

    My trimester exams are 30% of their term average with the additional 70% coming from tests, quizzes, assignments, and participation. If students earn a higher grade on their exam than their lowest test grade, I will replace their lowest test grade with the exam grade. I would check with your department chair or AP to see what the procedure would be if a student has no way of passing even with a high grade on the final.
     

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