April 8, 2011 12:41 AM Subscribe
What's the best way to approach a teacher about what I feel is an unfair grade?
I got back my final paper for a class I'm taking and received 46% on it. I wasn't expecting a stellar mark, as I worked on it in the last couple of days before it was due, but I'm still left feeling angry at how a teacher can give me such a poor grade on a paper which I handed in on time and to which I gave a decent effort (despite the time crunch).
A lot of marks were taken off for not using APA format correctly (I feel like I'm formatting-dyslexic, if there is such a thing) otherwise, only one section had notes about where I went wrong in the paper (a section wasn't as thorough as it should have been).
This class has been extremely frustrating for me: I ace the exams which are mostly multiple choice plus a few short answers, yet on written assignments I've gotten very poor marks. I'm a good writer in general and in other classes I get A's or B pluses on my papers.
An important thing to note is that my teacher employs a graduate student as a marker. On two previous assignments where I was likewise puzzled by my poor grades, I approached the teacher and asked for clarification about why I got the grades I did, and even she seemed flustered about why the marker gave me the particular grades (in both cases, she bumped up my marks--but just a bit).
Frankly, I'm angry to be in this position yet again, and I need some advice about how to best approach my teacher in a level-headed way. I'm not the most social or assertive person, so I feel like I need a script going into a meeting with her.
If she isn't helpful, I realize I can go to the department chair about the matter, but I wan't to see how far I can get by talking to the teacher at this stage.
Phew. That felt good to get off my chest. Thanks for any advice :)