Saturday, December 8, 2007

End of the Term

"Dear Dr. Mihi,

Will it hurt my grade if I don't get to the required page length [= 8-10 pages]? I only have three pages written and I'm almost done, but I really want to get a good grade.

Your Student."

That's me, speechless.


Dr. Virago said...

Wow. Just wow. Imagine the equivalent for a Ph.D. student:

Dear Dissertation Director,

Will I still get the Ph.D. if I turn a single chapter? I don't have anything more to say than that, but I still want to get the degree that says I've written a book-length work.

Your ABD Student

Maybe you should use such an analogy with your student. Why is it that they think our requirements -- whether it's in a particular class or for a degree -- are arbitrary? Why don't they realize that we assign/require these things because we think a student at their level in a given discipline or area should be able to complete such tasks and demonstrate the knowledge/skills they require?!


(FYI, I'm dealing with roughly the same problem with grad students who want to be arbitrarily waived from certain requirements, or who want to substitute completely courses for them.)

Belle said...

It's the season, I guess. I got an email this morning from a student who's been absent from her online class all term. She wants an incomplete because her separation/divorce is going poorly.

Last day of class was Friday.

dance said...

I like the "three pages written and I'm almost done." I thought students didn't understand the concept that it takes a certain number of words to deal with a certain idea, but this one does. You can pride yourself on that.

Clearly, however, she missed the realization that for an 8-10 page paper, one must pick an idea that requires 8-10 pages to discuss.

heu mihi said...

Well and the truly annoying thing is that, even without reading the paper (or having the slightest recollection of her topic), I can declare with certainty that this student did *not* select a topic that could be adequately dealt with in three pages.

Sigh. So very, very many problems.