A'nold wrote:Prez- I must sound very "I get great grades" douchey. Sorry if that is how I'm coming across everyone!
I just don't see how people like snowpeach can actually make a straight-faced argument that bottom students and top students alike are there on luck.
Nah, not douchey. The top folks, sure they probably read profs very well, I'll grant that. And the bottom is probably not that great at it relative to their peers. But I don't think that I'd put them in on the category of people the luck argument applies to. I think for most of us, myself included, there's only a vague idea about what to do on an exam, and since most people seem to write close to the same substantive things, and you don't really know what you get points for, it can feel a lot like luck. Is it luck in the strict sense? Probably not.
But each exam I take is pretty much against the same pool of people and my grades are pretty close to random. Here are the factors that seem to matter in terms of my own performance which might explain why this feels like a luck based game: If I feel like I did really really well, I'm close to median. If I feel I did horribly, then I have a 50% chance of a horrible grade and a 50% chance of a phenomenal grade. If I can use a computer to take notes in class, my grade will generally be higher. If participation counts for something, my grade will be lower. If the test is some sort of take home, or longer than four hours, my grade will be higher.
So, subjectively, to me it's luck in the sense that it doesn't appear that I can affect my outcomes based on anything that I actually do. I just take a test and get a number back.
keg411 wrote:If you talk to your professors, they will pretty much explain all of this pretty clearly, and it isn't "luck" at all.
This has been nowhere near my experience, except in the sense that they contradict each other, which supports the theory that you need to cater to the individual professor.
keg411 wrote:I actually asked one of my professors about this, and while he said some of it might be "luck", if your grades are consistent, you are likely not constantly on the margins.
Again, I think we've had different experiences, but I'd be curious to know what people who see a lot of these exams have to say about really inconsistent grades (me).