How can I get a B or C in a literature unit on Shakespeare's Othello?

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caledon | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The only way of knowing the answer to this for certain is to review your instructor's syllabus and policies; every teacher is different, and a C in one class might be an A or an F in another. It's also important to know whether your class is a theater or literature class, or whether it's an AP, Honors or standard class; the standards and requirements are probably different. However, an A almost always represents an exceptional understanding and performance, while a C represents that you grasped the basic concepts and material, but you're missing some of the details and critical thinking.

I'm assuming that, since you're asking about a C or a B, that you feel an A cannot be achieved. This is ok - a C or B is much better than failing. Here's what you can do to get one of these passing grades:

  1. Review your teacher's syllabus and grading policies. Identify the assignments that are worth the most points and the ones that will take the most time. Find out if they average the grades or not, or if they separate the grades by percentage and category (i.e. tests are 20%, etc)
  2. If information is missing, ask your teacher. They may be able to tell you when future tests are scheduled or whether makeup/extra credit work is available. I don't know about your teacher, but when students ask me these sorts of questions I usually make some accommodation for them, because I'd rather reward them for making the effort to ask me.
  3. Use the materials on Enotes to review the play. Focus on understanding the overall storyline and the characters, then focus on one Act at a time. Use the Quizzes to practice - you can take each one several times to be sure that you have the right answers memorized.

Hope this helps! If you have additional information or questions please let me know.

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