you're reading...
Course Blog

Standards Based Grading System

There is a new standards based grading system that is starting to be implemented into the schools. I first heard of it when I was talking with Allison about her student teaching experience, and she was telling me a few things about this new grading system. The main reason behind switching to this new grading system, from what I understand, is that it is supposed to assess grades based on the students’ mastery of the material, and not any other factors. The new grading system is also supposed to be aligned with the Common Core Standards as well. Instead of issuing a grade of A-F, the new system uses numbers 0-4 to assess students work. I was reading this article, which was written in November of last year, and the author was discussing some of the negatives that comes with the new grading system. The common complaint from students is that they don’t feel like they’re being graded fairly and it’s much harder to earn an “A” now with the new system. The school commented back saying it’s not due to the new grading system that earning an “A” is more difficult, it’s because of the new standards. Other complaints were that some teachers only use whole numbers, while other teachers use tenths or hundredths to assess. (An A- starts at 3.5, and an A starts at 3.67  so it does make a huge difference what exact number a teacher uses).

What are your thoughts on this new system? Do you think it will be better overall for both students and teachers to use a grading system like this? What are your fears with using this new system? I know I am worried that if I’m student teaching in a school that uses this system, it will take me a while to learn how best to assess students’ work because the limited practice we’ve had is based on the traditional A-F system. I do think this makes sense to be used with CC, but like anything new, it will take time for everyone to get used to using this system, but I was curious to see what everyone thinks about it!



One thought on “Standards Based Grading System

  1. I had a student in my last block experience who was quite smart who complained about the harder grading systems. The letters and numbers are practically the same thing, only substituting numbers for letters. Students still know what the numbers correspond to, so I’m not sure how much better the new grading system is. I know that grade inflation is a troubling reminder that grades do not accurately reflect actual knowledge. I also suspect that it continues into college across the U.S. Also, with the establishment of higher standers with the common core, it is natural that students’ grades will not be as high as they are used to, especially if they take into account grade inflation. Plus, teachers apparently are not aware that using tenths and hundredths in their calculations will impact how students are ranked when they graduate which affects where they are accepted when they apply to colleges. The article really makes it an issue of awareness/ignorance of the new system, which naturally affects implementation of the new grading. When teachers become more aware of their options and obligations for grading, they will change their practice, and I hope that the students who have already been assigned grades don’t suffer too much for a miscommunication error. As Director Teresa Lunt said, “I feel some of this is self-inflicted.”

    Posted by neilfriberg | April 2, 2013, 10:32 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: