Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Late Work Part III

I've discussed why we might accept late work and followed with the question of fairness. If you want to, read Part I and Part II. But it is not necessary to understand this post. Now, I'd like to look at how could we manage a system that allows late work. The unfortunate part of the high school report card is that we want it to reflect the learning of the student and the work ethic of the student. As of now, both are tied to the letter grade written on the report card. Is this acceptable? I will operate this discussion believing that the letter grade is more than just a reflection of learned content.

Scenario One: NO LATE WORK
Number of Assignments--15 (5-10 points; 5--20 points; 5--50 points)
Total Points Possible--400 points.

Student A turns in 14/15 assignments (4/5-10 points; 5/5--20 points; 5/5--50 points)
10 Point Assignments: 6,6,0,9,9=30
20 Point Assignments: 15, 15, 20, 15, 20=85
50 Point Assignments: 45, 35, 50, 40, 40=210
Total: 325/400= 81% B- (Completed Work Average: 83%)

Student B turns in 14/15 assignments (5/5-10 points; 4/5--20 points; 5/5--50 points)
10 Point Assginments: 8,8,7,7,9=39
20 Point Assignments: 18,18,19,0,15=70
50 Point Assignments: 45,40,45,40,45=215
Total 324/400=81% B- (Completed Work Average: 85%)

Student C turns in 14/15 assignments (5/5-10 points; 5/5--20 points; 4/5--50 points)
10 Point Assginments: 9,9,10,10,10=48
20 Point Assignments: 18,19,20,20,20=97
50 Point Assignments: 45,45,50,0,40=180
Total: 325/400=81% B- (Completed Work Average: 93%)

That just doesn't sound fair to me. Student C is being affected far worse than the others. And, his work is much better.

If I charged a 25% late fee, here is how it would affect:
Student A's 10 Point Assignment: 8. Fee Assessed: 6. New Score: 331 (83%)
Student B's 20 Point Assignment: 17. Fee Assessed: 12. New Score: 336 (84%)
Student C's 50 Point Assignment: 50. Fee Assesed: 38. New Score: 363 (91%)

I think this is fair. I could live with that. In fact, as I write this, I am reminded of credit cards. Maybe because I need to pay mine. If at the beginning of the year I charged a 10% W.P.R. (Weekly Percentage Rate), I could allow students to miss an on-time payment. If a student's credit score continued to decline, I could up the W.P.R. Now this is real world.

*Note: Any mathematical errors are unintentional and a result of my inability to do simple math--but I did do all of my assignments!


At 1:46 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We used online submission of programs for one of our computer science classes in college, and there was a steadily increasing penalty for turning the program in late. (It was linear, on the order of 1% off every 15 minutes or so?) Since the program submission was online, there was no question about what time you turned it in. Your idea of weekly rate seems like a similar model, though honestly a week seems like a really generous block of time (from me, a non-teacher).

What about 10% off the top, and then 2% per day additional? Weekends could count as one day or two at your discretion -- they're more time to make up the work, but there's no way for the student to get it to you in between if you only accept work at school.

At 3:27 PM , Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

I accept some late work, but you can only earn 60% for it. I will do this three times in a semester for a student.

After that, since I do not allow extra credit unless all assignments have been completed, I put a 1 in the gradebook (as in 1%).

I probably have one of the lowest failure rates of annyone in my department, because, believe it or not, I usually don't get that much missing or late work.

This year was different, however, and I am thinking of revising my policy because I was deluged by late work all at once after my father passed away. It nearly killed me. I don't know. I will think about it.


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