Comments on: Extra Credit: Sonic Youth Friday http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/ History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present Sun, 21 Sep 2014 07:01:11 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 By: quixote http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-990455 Tue, 03 Apr 2012 00:01:51 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-990455 I’ve often wondered about the psychology of extra credit, too. Attach 0.1% to some separate activity, and the students are all over it. Point out that they can improve their grade by 1% each week by taking the weekly quizzes and using the option to retake until they get full points. That’s just a huge yawn. It’s amazing.

I used to try to explain the math (this is a science class, fergawdsake!), but then I decided the behavior itself is indicative. Are you smart enough to figure out that +10% is greater than +0.1%? Yes? No wonder you’re getting an A. (Almost always, it’s the best students sweating the details, as others have said.)

The math-challenged get their C’s and disappear. Into politics, probably.

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By: Liz2 http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-990057 Mon, 02 Apr 2012 04:08:01 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-990057 I allow extra credit situationally, meaning if there is a good lecture, film, etc that is appropriate for my class to attend, then they can do extra credit by going and writing something up. If there isn’t anything during the semester then too bad. This semester there has been a film and FOUR lectures they can attend. I’m just happy to be engaging them in my field outside the classroom. I don’t really see it as extra credit rather as a means to get them thinking about another part of the world that is generally pretty alien to them.

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By: truffula http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-989131 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 16:42:47 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-989131 I do not as a rule offer extra credit but when students come around to ask what they can do “about their grade” I make them review their scores and talk with me about what’s going wrong. We talk about strategies for fixing that. I may then ask for a plan for improving the lowest of the scores and let them do that.

I have sometimes encouraged students to attend public lectures and asked for a review of what they found most interesting. I tally these up and if at the end of the term they are on the boundary of a grade I use that to justify bumping them up. As others have noted, the stronger students tend to be the ones who do this.

In one of my classes, everything that scores less than 90% must be reworked. It is a grading nightmare but the material is cumulative so if they don’t master it fast enough they will only spiral downward. This also buffers the grade.

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By: ilse http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-989115 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 15:48:32 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-989115 I teach high school, and the grading and reporting policy in the county in which I work forbids either extra credit or participation grades at the high school level (although participation is an acceptable grading category in middle school). I think the intent is that grading be, inasmuch as it’s possible, an entirely objective measure of a student’s knowledge and mastery of the subject, and not rely on the whims of a teacher. Which I think says more about the Educational Powers That Be and their opinion about the people who work for them than anything else.

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By: Western Dave http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988992 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 12:02:31 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988992 I don’t offer extra credit. I have sometimes offered a bonus point for attending an after school function. The bonus point, however, goes into the grade book as one point on an assignment valued 0. In a course, with a couple hundred points, it’s less than one percent. Kids are very eager to get that.

And yeah, I have told kids “there is no extra credit, this isn’t middle school.” There’s really no excuse for not pulling at least a B- in my HS classes because of HW grades, opportunity to do test corrections etc.

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By: Digger http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988987 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 11:41:09 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988987 I built extra credit right into my syllabus (short 1-2 page critical essays/responses to class films). I was surprised when one student complained they were a lot of work (I figured probably an hour beyond actually showing up to class and sitting through the film). Well, duh, it’s extra credit, not free candy! The advantage to putting extra credit right in the syllabus? At the end of semester, when the slackers come slinking around for extra credit for the course (the “anything to pass” variety), the answer is nopers, extra credit was already available in the syllabus, and it isn’t fair to give extra extra credit to you and not everyone.

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By: Profane http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988837 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 05:58:34 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988837 There is something I have to ask you,
I mean, are you going to liberate us girls,
from male white corporate oppression?
Tell it like it is! Don’t be shy!

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By: ruskii http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988800 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 04:52:43 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988800 Personally, extra credit (or events professors practically beg us to attend, where it’s clear our attendance will count in our favor) is something I do because, as a student with a disability that can be both mentally and physically brutal (and unpredictable), I tend to get behind in my grades throughout the quarter. Extra credit usually lets me build my grade up a bit in ways that aren’t as demanding or may just be timed better than other deadlines, and events are something I can usually drag myself to even when brain fog won’t even let me get through basic levels of research for a project.

My situation probably isn’t that common, but at least as long as the extra credit is an event, I could see students with attention and learning disorders possibly finding that sort of thing appealing in a similar way.

I also tend to do extra work when I can since I find myself needing deadline extensions several times each quarter (through disability accommodations), which makes me feel like I come across as a slacker since nothing is visibly wrong with me and my disability isn’t understood much by other people.

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By: Indyanna http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988720 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 02:08:53 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988720 I think your analysis is on the mark, Historiann. It’s a crutch that students get conditioned to in the lower grades and then just carry the metabolic need for up through the ranks. Although I’ve never had a graduate student ask for it. A lot of kids around our area call it “bonus” which makes me think it’s a part of the school culture. There are actually two kinds of expectations: the extra credit that is attached to a particular assignment, such as in-class examinations. I do use this for psychic grail in our bayonet-survey, inasmuch as students are being herded through the course coersively so we can make our nut with the dean–which I think is pretty corrupt. And the kind when a student who is floundering comes individually and asks if there is anything extra they can “do” to bring up a grade. I have difficulty with this on a range of fronts and don’t do it. And yes, the better students are far more likely to do it, and of everyone who does it, they are far more likely to “actually get” the “points” as they call them. So it’s really counterproductive. When you teach in a state lapped by the Atlantic Ocean, and kids who grew up there include it among the “states eventually carved out of the Louisiana Purchase,” you’re really wishing this is a form of potlach irony, or even contempt, from students who don’t really need the points. But it seldom proves to be this.

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By: Tenured Radical http://www.historiann.com/2012/03/30/extra-credit-sonic-youth-friday/comment-page-1/#comment-988688 Sat, 31 Mar 2012 01:19:38 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/?p=18478#comment-988688 @Bridgett: tell them graduate school *is* extra credit.
@squadratomagico: effen cool.
@historiann: I was having 1970s music flashbacks all day. I wonder what Sonic Youth would do with Billy Joel?

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