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chelle21689's avatar

Should I report a class to the Provost's Office?

Asked by chelle21689 (7008points) March 4th, 2019

I work for a University and they also pay for my tuition as a graduate student for business since I work there. I am currently taking a finance class and an elective class, so I only have two more classes after this and I will graduate. I’ve always been an A and B student but this elective class I’m really struggling with.

There are four different law professors in this negotiations class that take turns teaching and grading each week. The grading is very inconsistent, they say one thing and then another, they immediately hand out case studies for outlines which we have never done before, they have us do assignments before even learning the material. They are all very harsh graders, particularly one. I usually get A’s and B’s but have been averaging C’s on my paper but one harsh grader just gave me an F.

This is not just me but several other students, the whole class pretty much, are very concerned about their grades and feel the same way as I do. We’re not idiots, many of us have maintained a 3.0–3.8 GPA and have scored D’s and F’s on our last paper. The grading is very unreasonable and has all of us extremely upset. An elective course where you write a paper on negotiations should not be this challenging, it’s not like we’re going to be lawyers!

I work with the Provost Office, I am seriously considering reporting this class to the department. I’ve never received an F and I don’t think I deserved it. Several other people who are A students and even a girl I know who gets straight A’s got an F as well. Can they really fail most of the class?

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5 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

The provost’s office will want evidence, which means (a) more than one person complaining, (b) people have to be willing to give their names and show their test scores, and© be prepared for retribution on the part of the strict grader.

The last one© is somewhat of a risk.

If you think it’s worth the risk, then go to the provost, because it sounds like you have a legitimate complaint. But you will be more successful if you go as a group and can make a general case.

chelle21689's avatar

I have five other people complain (this class is about 10), I just need confirmation a few more before I decide if I want to bring it up or not.

JLeslie's avatar

I think yes. I agree with the answer above you have to be willing to show all your work, and best if more than one student goes, but I don’t think you have to organize a group.

I complained about a professor once in my school life, and I went alone. It was not about grades, it was about how he treated students who were late for class. Anyway, during my complaint, which I did in person, I got the healing I was not the only student who had complained. That professor was gone next semester.

Be willing to accept that nothing might get changed. The person in charge might agree with the grades.

I don’t think grading should depend on whether it’s an elective or not, the material is the material, but I don’t doubt from your description that this prof is being overly harsh.

chelle21689's avatar

Thanks, all. Wish me luck.

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