My Grading System   (Prof. I.V. Semushin)

Acknowledgements   I am grateful to Professor Joel S. Chapman of Oklahoma City University for sharing his grading system with me while my visit to OCU in October 1993. The below system is borrowed almost verbatim from Joel's system. It has proven to work very well in our environment. Many thanks to you, Joel, for giving us such a good instrument !
 
 
  • Your grade is a weighted average of attendance (A), homework (H), and exams (E) as follows:
          5 % - attendance
    This is true only if you come to class, it counts progressively more if you don't come to class ! You can fail solely on the basis of attendance !
          30 % - homework
          65 % - exams
    The final grade is calculated as follows:
            FG = 0.05 A + 0.30 H + 0.65 E
    where each grade:
    A = attendance,
    H = homework and
    E = exams
    is expressed by an integer number not exceeding 100.
  • The final grade is then applied to the standard (Russian) grading scale:
          83 - 100 = A = "superior"
          70 - 82 = B = "good"
          56 - 69 = C = "adequate"
          0 - 55 = F = "failure"
  • Example:
    John C. Student has the following grades:
    A = 90, H = 87, E = 83. Then 0.05 90 + 0.30 87 + 0.65 83 = 84.6
    So John earned an A.   Please remember that grades are earned !
  • I reserve the right to give some one a "break" if the student in question has a final average on a border line between letter grades (i.e. 82, 69 or 55). If the student has 90 or above in attendence, and has turned in all of the home work assignments, and has displayed a good attitude, etc., then I will consider assigning the next higher letter grade. If the student does not display the above characteristics, then I will not consider raising the grade. I will not consider raising the grade if the student's final average is more than one point away from the higher grade.
  • I use the following rounding rule: round up if the digit is five or above and down if it's less than five. For calculating the home work and exam averages, the averages are rounded to the nearest tenth for the final averaging and the final average is then rounded.
 
  Attendance Policy (A)  
 
  • Roll will be taken every class period by means of a roll sheet. It is your responsibility to sign the roll sheet. For you to receive credit for attending class, you must sign the roll sheet. If your ansence is to be excused, you must notify me of the reason for your absence in a timely manner (i.e. within one week). Please leave a phone message on my office phone or write me a note.
  • Your attendance grade will be determined by the following table:

    No. of unexused absences * Score Effect on your final average
    0 100 +5
    1 90 +4.5
    2 50 +2.5
    3 0 +0
    4 -50 -2.5
    5 -100 -5
    6 -150 -7.5
    7 -200 -10
    8 -400 -20
    9 -600 -30
    10 -800 -40
    * An unexused absence is any absence which is not due to illness, bereavement, or school activities. An unexcused absence is also any absence after eight excused absence.

    Above ten unexcused absences, there is no way for you to pass regardless of your other grades.

  • You have a maximum of 8 excused absences. After that point, all absences are unexcused!!!
  • If athletes need to be excused, the coach should notify me in writing in advance. If you are ill, call me to the office phone to let me know. During the extended illness, a letter or health certificale should be sent to me by your physician. An absence is assumed to be unexcused if I am not notified within one week of the absence. I prefer a note or a phone call over giving messages in person concerning absences. Your absence should include the class or classes missed, the reason, your academic group number, and of course, your name.
 
  Homework (H)  
 
  • You will be assigned a variety of homework which your are expected to complete and turn in. Any late homework will be marked down 10 %. Your homework grade will be determined by weighted summing the percentage of points earned for each homework assigned. For any homework not fulfilled, a zero will come in H.
  • In my courses, a major portion of the homework will be computer programs (or projects). You must turn in a list and a run of these programs to receive credit. To receive credit, your programs must not contain any run time errors. Your computer lab instructor is more than willing to assist you with your homework in the lab.
  • Usually, we give out 3 homework assignments for a semester, i.e. the total number of homework assignments we suggest that you will do is 3. The maximum you can earn for all homeworks given is 100. These 100 points will be divided in a specified manner between the total number of homework assignments.
  • For instance, if we give you 3 homework lab assignments for a semester, then lab work 1 done irreproachably and in full measure will bring you 50 points, and this work must forego all others. After that, you may do lab work 2 and/or lab work 3 and earn up to 25 points for each. These greatest possible points will be reduced, if the defence of student's lab work does not comply with the standards given in our study guides to laboratory works.
  • Your computer lab instructor will indicate time to defend your lab works and will be willing to assist you in class if you neatly formulate the questions you came to at home. Your seminar instructor will assist you (and so help the whole class) when you talk over your programming solutions to one or other algorithm.
 
  Exams (E)  
 
  • Your exam score, i.e. the value E in the final grade given by the formulae
    FG = 0.05 A + 0.30 H + 0.65 E ,
    will be determined by an average of several inner-semester written exams plus the final (oral) exam which are weighted equally. While the inner-semester written exams (we also call them test works) check your ability to solve practical problems, the oral final exam is a comprehensive inspection of your knowledge of theory, your ability to prove theoretical statements and to draw founded inferences from them. In total, these (written and oral) parts of exam cover all the course. With this in mind, we conduct not less than 2 inner-semester test works.
  • All inner-semester exams will be announced at least one week in advance. If you are going to miss an exam (it must be an excused absence), I would prefer that you take the exam early. If you cannot take it early, make every effort to take it within one week of the test date. After one week, you will receive a zero. You will also receive a zero for an unexcused absence during an exam.
  • I am rewriting and replacing some assignments or do some minor variations in the final exam questions as compared with those published in my textbooks, announced in previous semester or in the regular syllabus posted on this web site. It will be announced two weeks in advance.
 
 
  The grading peculiarities for each course can be seen in <Current courses> Grading  
                                   
 
  Academic honesty  
 
  • It is very unfortunate that on the first day of class and the first piece of information that I give you, I must discuss something negative. But there are those individuals that are not as honest as others, and enough so that I must make a policy statement.
  • For any exam, paper, program, or piece of work that is completed dishonestly you will earn a zero and I will counsel with you. If a problem occurs a second time, then you will be sent to the Dean and also earn a zero on the assignment in question. If a question of dishonesty occurs a third time, then you have just earned an 'F' in this course and will be reffered back to the Dean !
  • What is considered academic dishonesty or cheating ? A general rule of thumb is having some one else do your work or claiming others work as your own. It also includes giving or receiving assistance on exams.
  • My exams are always closed book, closed note, closed neighbor, and open brain.
    If there is a change in that policy on a particular exam, you will be notified in advance and it will be stated in the directions.
  • Do not use a crib. Cribs do more harm than good. Your consciousness will be bisected between your exertion to formulate an answer and exertion to conceal the fact of using a crib. It does not mean a lot of work for an examiner to detect such a bisection. You will be discouraged by some very simple examiner's questions.
  • On home work assignments, it is acceptable to work with some one to discuss and help each other but you should do your own work. On computer programs for example, it's okay to discuss syntax, or the details of the assignment, or to get help on the error massage. It is not okay to give some one a copy of your program. It's not acceptable to have some one to write it for you. It is not acceptable to copy work from a previous semester.
  • On papers (for example in course works) it is plagiarism to copy verbatim portions of others work such as an article or encyclopedia without using quotes and citing the reference. Summaries that you write should be in your own words.
  • When it comes to home work, dishonesty is not so apparent. I freely admit that. But it will show up on exams because your score will not reflect the same level of work as on your assignment. You will only be hurting yourself and burdening yourself with guilt.
 
  Student Code  
 
  • Classroom Courtesy
    1. Make every effort to come to class on time.
      But if you are late:
      • Take yout seat quietly.
      • Wait till class is over to get the handouts (if any).
      • Don't walk in front of the classroom.
      • Don't ask for coming in and don't apologize for being late.
      • Don't get out from clasroom without permission. If there exists an utmost necessity to get out, ask the permission.
      • Hold the door so that it won't slam.
    2. Raise your hand and wait to be recognized before asking a question.
    3. Don't talk in class !!!!!
    4. Clean after yourself and put the seat right.
  • For Success
    1. Come to class on time, participate, and take notes.
    2. Look over assignments before class.
    3. Review your notes after class.
    4. Complete all of your assignments on time.
    5. Stay caught up with your reading, homework, and studying.
    6. Complete the study guides for inner-semester and final exams and in your text. Make sure you can perform all the skills in them.
    7. Keep a strong determination to succeed !
    8. If you need help, get it soon.
    9. Keep a positive attitude.
  • Feedback
    1. On completion the course please fill in anonymously a feedback sheet. There you may point out both positive and negative, in your opinion, sides of my teaching.
    2. You may also send me an email with your ideas on how to improve your study process.
 
  Welcome to my class.
I am looking forward to a great and productive semester together !