Michael Thomsen The Case Against Grades Summary

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An A for Effort The greatest lie that the A to F grade scale represents is that an individual’s personal views, ideas, creativity, and potential can be reduced to a mere letter grade. The constant pressure to receive excellent grades can be detrimental to ones originality and serve as a roadblock to ones passion for learning. In the article, “ The Case Against Grades”, author Michael Thomsen lists strong points to illustrate is argument against the A-F grading scale. In the concluding paragraph, Thomsen ends his argument proposing “ It’s time to admit that system has no place in our future” (Thomsen, 2). I agree with most of Thomsen’s viewpoints stating the negative ramifications of the grade scale. However, I do not agree with his stance…show more content…
Michael Thomsen argues against the way grading negatively enforces excellence in grades stating, “ the catch is that fear of negative outcomes has been repeatedly shown to be a major impediment to learning” (1). The constant pressure society places on students to receive excellent grades can be detrimental to ones creativity and passion for learning itself. Personally, I would also included plagiarism to this list of negative outcomes. I believe societies obsession with getting A’s plays a major role in why students resort to various forms of plagiarism. During finals week while in my first semester of college, I overheard one of my classmates bribe another student into writing one of her final exam essays for one hundred dollars. I could hear the desperation in her voice as she explained to our classmate, “ I am struggling to keep up with all my classes. I am so stressed and I really just need to pass this class with an A”. I am not sure if the student took the bribe, regardless, this story illustrates to me the shortcomings of our current grading system. Although unintentional, the system discourages students from holding respect for academics, instead encouraging them to favor the grade of an A over their original thoughts and

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