Rigor is creating an environment in which each student is expected to learn at high levels,
each student is supported so he or she can learn at high levels,
and each student demonstrates learning at high levels (Blackburn, 2008).

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Is there a place for extra credit in a rigorous classroom?

Just read an interesting article.  When I was teaching, I struggled with the whole concept of extra credit.  It never seemed to accomplish what I thought it would.  The students who usually earned it, didn't really need it...earning an A plus instead of an A or an A instead of a B.  It also seemed to overemphasize points vs. learning.  Last year, one of my graduate students was furious because I wouldn't give her extra credit.  She was on the border between an A and a B, and she wanted me to increase one low grade because she had done a good job "the rest of the time".  In effect, she wanted me to give her extra credit on a very poor assignment because....she wanted it.  I'm still not fully sure where I stand with this, but I do know that I don't appreciate an attitude that demands extra credit.  What do you think?

1 comment:

  1. Barb,
    This post caused me to think back to my 11th grade English teacher, Judy Stinnett. That wonderful lady taught me how to write and pushed us all. She was the Queen of rigor, and for a lot of us, it was a rude awakening. Falling down and getting up again happened repeatedly.

    But while the standards were sky-high, there were opportunities for earn additional points here and there. When all was said and done, if you were willing to take advantage of those extra opportunities, the grade on the report card would com out OK. She pushed, and she prepared us for the future, but she didn't destroy our GPA in the process.


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