What to you, is a 'good' final mark? Would it be 60+ or 90+? What would be oustanding or exemplary, substantial or elementary?

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I agree with post #7, although unfortunately grading is probably the thing that has the most impact on our students' lives. I think whether a grade is exemplary, etc. is far less important than being able to measure growth and progress. If a student is turning in exemplary work at the beginning of the year, then we need to tailor what we are doing to challenge them to improve. Likewise, if a student makes progress from substandard work, we need to find ways to recognize that beyond a simple letter grade.

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I found the above post concerning British grading standards fascinating. On a 100 point scale, I could never visualize a 60 as anything but mediocre at best. I tend to agree that an "A" is not necessarily outstanding or even exemplary. I have seen some teachers give out "A"'s as if they were penny candy; in my English classes, an "A" must be earned. I would rate as outstanding a high "A"--perhaps 95 or above as truly exemplary.

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It all depends upon what country you're in and what system of grading is used. For example, in my M.A. program through an English university, the system uses divisions of acceptable, Merit and Distinction, with the originating assumption that a student can master the material at a medium level. An additional assumption is that each point of knowledge accumulates, whereas, in American schools, the assumption often goes the other direction: it is assumed students can master all the material so marks are taken off for each point of knowledge missed--as opposed to accumulated for each demonstration of more than the expected level of mastery (someone once explained this difference by saying the British system assumption is that--even for a student--a 100% on, for example, an essay meant that scorers/instructors viewed that as the best essay ever written on the subject, making 100% a virtually impossible goal).

Along with having a deep psychological effect foreither good or ill, the difference in assumptions means that students in schools using the British method may be considered to have done better in their studies than those in America when comparable marks are given. So the answer to your question really depends upon (1) where you are and (2) what assumptions are in place that structure the (3) method of evaluation used, and (4) your goals for higher education. In the US, a "C" at 70+% correct information, is the bottom of an acceptable final grade: consistent Cs will limit what colleges you can get into and what courses of study you can pursue. In the English system, 60+ correct information is the minimum expectation while 70+ is Merit and the higher percentages are Distinction.

I suppose, then, the definition of a "'good' final mark" in the USA system would be 80+% while in the British system "good" would be 70+, since "accdeptable" in the US is 70+% (C) and in the British system "acceptable" is 60+: "good" would then be one step up, with "excellent/distinction" being above that.

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I think it's important to say that grading is one of the least important things we do, and just as standardized testing goes, it is very difficult to accurately assess a student's progress and work with a simple grading scale. I also find there is an expectation by students that lends them to expect an A for completing the assignment according to the directions, so the definition of "exemplary" in their eyes is often very different than what a teacher would suggest.
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Exemplary work must be one which is excellent; work that far exceeds the norm. If the grading system under which one works has a minimum passing grade of 70, as is mine, then exemplary work should be 95 or higher.  I do have problems with the idea that a C is "average," The colleges which I attended considered a "C" as "fair" work, which I think is much more indicative of the quality of work. Average would imply the average grade for the class and the work assigned, which can vary from class to class. An A should indicate excellent work, a B good work, a C fair work, D poor work, and anything below as unacceptable work.

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For my school, 70% is considered passing. Funny enough, I just had this conversation with my students. They were questioning my grading. on poster projects. I asked them what average was. They replied a "C." I went on to describe that they were correct. I told them that if they were to do a project as expected, they were completing average work. If they were to go above and beyond, they would receive an "A." For me, an "A" is given only if a student shows mastery and rises above the norm.

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Here in the US, most teachers have 60% as the lowest grade that they will accept as passing.  So it is clearly not exemplary.  I suppose it would be elementary or worse.  For me, only a grade of 95% or above counts are truly exemplary for an entire term.  That is the level at which I award an A or a 4.0 (depending on the grading system).

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It is quite difficult to say what mark would qualify for the categories you have specified, outstanding or exemplary, substantial and elementary.

The value is different for different subjects, and for different grades. Given the marks of two students in the same class and being judged by the same teacher for the same subject, one could say that the one with the higher marks has a better performance.

Though even here, unless it is known how a teacher gives marks one could not say whether 75+ is exemplary or 95+. A general comparison of marks and their correlation to performance across different teachers, subjects and grades is nearly impossible.

The one rule that can be followed is to put in your hard work in an honest manner irrespective of what mark your teacher gives you for it. The marks scored would be of relevance when you write your standardized tests later on, for now the importance should be placed on actually understanding and mastering whatever you learn.

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