ERIC Number: ED362510
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Apr
"But I Have to Have an A": Probing the Cultural Meanings and Ethical Dilemmas of Grades in Teacher Education.
This paper examines grading policies and the college student culture, as part of an ongoing collaborative study of the socialization of beginning teacher educators on four campuses. Utilizing a combination of participant observation and action research to arrive at a better understanding of grades and the improvement of grading practices, four teacher educators shared journals and conducted inquiries on aspects of teaching that both intrigued and troubled them. After 3 years it was determined that grades were the source of literally all conflict with students. A framework is provided for: the exploration of research on college grading practices; political, cultural and ethical contexts of grading decisions; everyday manifestations of "grade-orientation"; student justifications for grade changes; what students believe grades should mean; and the presentation of two vignettes describing grading fiascos. Although a graduate course on grading methods is not suggested, it is recommended that the topic be included in policy discussions at the graduate level. A table, based on a series of psychological studies characterizing college students as being either grade- or learning oriented is appended. (Contains 41 references.) (LL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Atlanta, GA, April 12-16, 1993).