Friday, May 14, 2010

No Child Left Behind Leaves Students Behind

As you all know, I go to Brooklyn College. I’ve posted here some of the arrogant statements from “Rate My Professor dot com” made by various students. There is a prevalent attitude that by students that they want an “A” in every single course and they want it without working very hard. They seem to figure that everyone should pass every class, it’s their right. Furthermore, if you put in effort, you should get an “A” in the class.

Now, my Atheist Nepali from a Buddhist family study partner said to me, “I’m sorry but, Americans are dumb.” I had to explain to him that it was the NYC Public School system. Recently, in my hardest class, the professor mentioned that he has in mind a certain number of A’s and a certain number of B’s that he expects to give out. Well, I agree that it would be odd for a large percentage of the class to deserve good grades. Although, I don’t agree that the professor makes the cutoff between an “A” and “A-“ 95.5%. I think 93% would be more fair of a cutoff. Most professors use 90% (and not give A-s) or they use 92 or 93%. Well, the “A” ship has sailed for me in that class anyway as I got an 88 (B+) on both exams so far. I’m just hoping I do well enough on the final to pull the overall average up to an A- range.

The thing is, is that when I apply to CUNY grad schools, they are going to expect a really high GPA because they will probably know that a really LARGE percentage of Brooklyn College makes the Dean’s list every semester. So, if my GPA is say, only 3.5, they will be thinking I can’t do the work. They won’t be understanding that I got unlucky and I seemed to always get the hardest professors for every class. This Macro professor even admits that he’s the hardest Macro professor. I also got a hard professor for Corporate Finance. Sure, these are hard courses, but, I managed to get the hardest professors for them.

Now, in another class, I have a presentation on Sunday about New Media and Marketing Research. It’s supposed to be ten minutes PER person where we work with a partner. My partner sent me THREE minutes, ok, maybe it would be more with the things she might say that aren’t on the slides. What she sent me contains obvious grammatical errors, is poorly put together and it doesn’t contain congruency with what I’m working on. Incidentally, I was REALLY clear about what I was doing and what she should do. I gave her the easy parts: Intro, the easiest subtopic and conclusion. I told her HOW to write an intro-define Marketing Research and New media in your own words. Then tie them together. At that point, we lead into examples that are the subtopics we’ll be covering. She defined “Marketing Research Surveys.” This is a subtopic of “Marketing Research” itself and my subtopics don’t fall under this. I sent her a text pointing out that this was a third of her grade. She texted me back that she didn’t care. I asked her if she was planning on adding more. I didn’t get a response. She hasn’t met with me once. She agreed to meet with me and then sent me a text that we would coordinate by phone and Email instead. Ok, that iiiiiiiiiiis possible. However she hasn’t really attempted that.

Incidentally, presentations started last Sunday. One whole pair didn’t even show up. Another pair, one half didn’t show. I feel bad for the guy, he begged the professor to do it next week when his partner would be here, but, he had to go anyway. He actually had a decent presentation. I thought his presentation was better than the two girls who went before him. One girl read off the screen for like 2 or 3 minutes. The other played a video of the transition of her company’s logo instead of talking about how new media was really effecting the industry.

Seriously, I hope that the professor gives a 0 for that third of the grade to the ones who didn’t even show up. If you don’t show up to a job, you get fired. Students should know that there are consequences to irresponsibility. This class is actually an easy class. There are no exams, so you don’t have to take notes (though, I have been doing so) just show up to class, write a paper for the midterm and this 10 minute presentation. The nice thing is that you’re given the leeway to really pick what you want to delve into further study of for your presentation.


  1. If you pay for the class, you should get a passing grade. If you have a scholarship, then earn it. :) (Mostly joking)

  2. Well, why not just pay the $2,500 * 8 (for four years....) and just get a degree. I mean you shouldn't even have to wait four years. SARC!!!

  3. Obviously, I agree with you.

    On the other hand, why pay $2,500 and end up with nothing?

    I have no respect for teachers who say they are going to fail a certain percentage of the class. If all the students work hard, they all deserve to pass.

  4. Oh, you've had my Macro prof, have you? He said he has in mind a cerain number of A's he wants to give but the college REQUIRES him to give an A if people attain a certain % or I posted that. Although, there are plenty of people with both test 1 & 2 below 65%

  5. Please don't get me started on ths. I used to tutor remedial students in college. Fully one-third of my students had gone from AP English straight to remedial.