We’re deep in the thick of the semester now. Let the “de-” grading begin!
Many’s the time my colleagues and I have remarked at this time of year, “If it weren’t for the grading, I’d be LOVING this job!”
Why is grading such a pain? Here are the top 5 reasons:
5. Trying to keep a steady set of criteria in place as we read paper after paper. I usually write up a “key” or a list of criteria that an assignment should meet for different grade categories. I keep this in front of me for each and every assignment I grade.
4. Handing back the graded work and feeling the environment change. As stress levels go up for the students seeing their straight-A report card get revised to include a few A-‘s or B+’s, they start to view you as the reason their dreams won’t come true…
3. Student reactions to getting a grade less than an A. Anger, despair….no pleasant reactions, for sure!
2. Sitting still reading student writing makes the mind go numb. Many student papers read like they were begun at 3 am, with no time to revise or spell check.
AND THE TOP REASON GRADING IS SUCH A PAIN….
1. Many of the same thing, over and over and over. It often takes me 30-45 min per midterm. I grade one, then have to do something else for a while. One down, 26 to go! If it’s night time, the temptation is to reach for the wine and cheese! RESIST! I can grade no more than three papers/exams per day without feeling like my insides are going to reverse.