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Old Feb 12, 2013, 06:17 PM   #1
glocke12
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University Student Sues School for a "C" grade

This has got to be a first...though I am not really all that surprised as when I was in college many of my classmates would argue with the professor for points.

http://news.yahoo.com/lehigh-univers...124956418.html

Honestly, I don't even think this should have come to trial...
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 06:25 PM   #2
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Class participation dropped her grade to a C+? Then she was a crap student to start off with. No professor (even lab professors) award more than 10% for participation.

Everything goes in exams, and projects. That means she screwed somewhere; hence, her fault. Go cry to the corner.
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 06:41 PM   #3
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This is the norm these days, the parents pay $40k a year and expect their kids to graduate while playing xbox.

"Higher" education has been sold out on both sides of the spectrum. The bar is lowered so that the money keeps rolling in, and education is being treated more like a business every year. Consumers want the paper they paid for, or else.
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 06:48 PM   #4
Brian Y
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Originally Posted by Zombie Acorn View Post
This is the norm these days, the parents pay $40k a year and expect their kids to graduate while playing xbox.

"Higher" education has been sold out on both sides of the spectrum. The bar is lowered so that the money keeps rolling in, and education is being treated more like a business every year. Consumers want the paper they paid for, or else.
It sucks.

I don't know about the US, but over in the UK, the whole "university access for everyone" policy that this country had has essentially created a massive split - prestigious universities that rarely give out high grades, and are very hard to get into - meaning you have to work, and general universities (and ex polytechnics) which are easy to get into, easy to pass, but mean very little once you've got it.

I mean, some university courses over here allow entry with two grade Es at a level (that's two courses at 40% marks). Yet they'll probably go to university, and get a 2:1, and then go to work in McDonalds, claiming that they're "too good" to be there because they have a degree that's not worth the paper it's written on.
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 09:11 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Zombie Acorn View Post
This is the norm these days, the parents pay $40k a year and expect their kids to graduate while playing xbox.

"Higher" education has been sold out on both sides of the spectrum. The bar is lowered so that the money keeps rolling in, and education is being treated more like a business every year. Consumers want the paper they paid for, or else.
I have to ask, where do you get your information?

"The bar is lowered so that the money keeps rolling in"?

That's not what I see within the California State University system. Demand for a college education is up and many majors are "impacted" which means there's more demand than there are openings. When that occurs, the bar is raised as students with higher qualifications take priority.

A few quotes from universities within the CSU system ...

Quote:
At this time, Cal Poly Pomona is experiencing increased demand across all levels, but the increase is most dramatic with entering freshmen. The campus anticipates that the increased freshmen demand will exceed our capacity to offer a quality education to our students. Therefore, be advised that even though you may submit an application to an impacted major and identify an alternate major, we may not be able to accommodate you in that alternate major. Please keep in mind when applying to an impacted major.

http://dsa.csupomona.edu/admissions/...d_programs.asp

Transfer AA/AS degree recipients: The Transfer AA/AS degree curriculum is used in lieu of the specific course requirements listed, as well as any additional recommended preparation. Under current CSU guidelines, the cumulative GPA will be increased by 0.1 and this ‘calculated GPA’ will be applied to the major specific minimum GPA and to any GPA used in the ranking of applicants. See Transfer AA/AS degree for additional requirements.

http://www.csulb.edu/depts/enrollmen...transfers.html
The university that I work in has long been viewed as a "safety school" ... one willing to admit anybody who wanted to attend. This year we set a new record for freshman applicants, and a number of our majors became impacted as well. Those hoping to attend those majors will find the bar has been raised instead of lowered as you suggest.

And as for your suggestion that education is being treated more like a business every year, that is because for the past decade or so the state has consistently cut funding, forcing the schools to adopt more business-like models in order to stay in operation.

As you seem to support smaller government and the free market, I would think that you'd be behind that change.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 04:12 AM   #6
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:29 AM   #7
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Supposedly one of the features that protects the UK university system (in which I work) is the use of external examiners. Essentially each institution hires an external prominent academic to go over the marks assigned in a course, to judge the quality of the materials provided to students, to report on any violations of University procedures to the central management, and to exhcange ideas about good teaching practice. When this job was taken seriously, with the external examiner acting as quality control, the system was quite good. Now many external examiners deign to show up in for a day or two at the end of the semester, hardly review the material they have been given, and write perfunctory reports that hardly scratch the surface. Still, I wonder why states in the US have not instituted this for their systems.

In any case, because of our external examining system, one would have to video record any class sessions if 'class participation' was graded so that the external examiner would have an opportunity to form a judgment. Neither students nor staff enjoy this, so we tend to stick to written work (e.g., contributions to an online forum).

As for marking a student down because they used profanity, that's ********** ridiculous. Any client a counselor might see is likely to use profanity in their every day life, and their are times when profanity is useful. The only issue is whether the profanity is viewed by others in the class as harassment or culturally insensitive, but even in that case it is a disciplinary matter and not a grading matter.

EDIT: The university alleges the student's behaviour was inappropriate in class in part because she cried. Again, this sounds like a pastoral matter rather than a grading matter....
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Last edited by VulchR; Feb 13, 2013 at 10:36 AM.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:39 AM   #8
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I have to ask, where do you get your information?

"The bar is lowered so that the money keeps rolling in"?

That's not what I see within the California State University system. Demand for a college education is up and many majors are "impacted" which means there's more demand than there are openings. When that occurs, the bar is raised as students with higher qualifications take priority.

A few quotes from universities within the CSU system ...



The university that I work in has long been viewed as a "safety school" ... one willing to admit anybody who wanted to attend. This year we set a new record for freshman applicants, and a number of our majors became impacted as well. Those hoping to attend those majors will find the bar has been raised instead of lowered as you suggest.

And as for your suggestion that education is being treated more like a business every year, that is because for the past decade or so the state has consistently cut funding, forcing the schools to adopt more business-like models in order to stay in operation.

As you seem to support smaller government and the free market, I would think that you'd be behind that change.
The article is about an institution that charges $40K a year, I dont think a public state college with overcrowding issues is a good comparison. Ill just say our best and brightest aren`t going to the expensive private institutions.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:04 PM   #9
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I hate to prolong this discussion, but, I hope that everyone knows that it costs virtually nothing "to sue". 99% of the time, this type of lawsuit goes nowhere. If this person collects, then it will be news. (The old dog bites man/man bites dog thing.)
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 10:50 PM   #10
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This is the same university that gives us Michael Behe, the Proponent in Chief for "intelligent design" creationism.

This quote is particularly interesting: Stephen Thode, the plaintiff's father and a longtime finance professor at Lehigh, testified on his daughter's behalf and said her participation score was highly irregular. "I have never heard of a case, not just at Lehigh, where a student achieved a zero in class participation where they attended and participated in every class," he said.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 06:24 AM   #11
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I would like to sue all three schools I went to but only for my money back. South Hills for lying about their accreditation (and saying I have an F in all classes for an entire semester on my transcripts even though I withdrew the semester before and joined the military), and Penn State and DeVry for having course descriptions resembling absolutely nothing of what the actual course was, i.e. the 3D modeling course at Penn State where the course described the use of Rhino to create a chess set, and a few other things but in reality was a course where we just made crap in Photoshop.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 12:27 PM   #12
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This is why we need a loser-pays system.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 01:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by citizenzen View Post

A few quotes from universities within the CSU system ...
Is that the Uni you work for? I got accepted to CSU Fullerton but am not sure if I feel like moving to Cali right now. I currently am a junior at Rutgers. And to anyone who says colleges have lowered their standards is out of their mind. They constantly raise the bar and require more and more for graduation. It's that typical "the whole world is bad and getting worse and people are getting stupider" mentality that a lot of pessimistic people seem to share even though it has no factual backup. Higher education is stronger and more accessible than ever.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 02:02 PM   #14
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It sucks.

I don't know about the US, but over in the UK, the whole "university access for everyone" policy that this country had has essentially created a massive split - prestigious universities that rarely give out high grades, and are very hard to get into - meaning you have to work, and general universities (and ex polytechnics) which are easy to get into, easy to pass, but mean very little once you've got it.

I mean, some university courses over here allow entry with two grade Es at a level (that's two courses at 40% marks). Yet they'll probably go to university, and get a 2:1, and then go to work in McDonalds, claiming that they're "too good" to be there because they have a degree that's not worth the paper it's written on.
Are you saying that, for example, a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Bristol or Nottingham is "easy", and, is only good for a job at McDonalds? I don't believe that, but, perhaps I am misinformed. For some reason, I have the idea that just the opposite has happened, and some mid-level UK universities have become excellent with respect to academic standards and research. Am I wrong?
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 03:11 PM   #15
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Are you saying that, for example, a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Bristol or Nottingham is "easy", and, is only good for a job at McDonalds? I don't believe that, but, perhaps I am misinformed. For some reason, I have the idea that just the opposite has happened, and some mid-level UK universities have become excellent with respect to academic standards and research. Am I wrong?
No, that's not what I'm saying.

I'm talking about, for example, a media degree from UEL - which isn't worth the paper it's written on (especially in the media industry), let alone the 27,000 it will cost you. Many mid-level universities (Lincoln is one that comes to mind) have seen a rapid improvement in research capabilities.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 07:04 PM   #16
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Is that the Uni you work for? I got accepted to CSU Fullerton but am not sure if I feel like moving to Cali right now. I currently am a junior at Rutgers. And to anyone who says colleges have lowered their standards is out of their mind. They constantly raise the bar and require more and more for graduation. It's that typical "the whole world is bad and getting worse and people are getting stupider" mentality that a lot of pessimistic people seem to share even though it has no factual backup. Higher education is stronger and more accessible than ever.
Rutgers tuitions are about on par with most state universities. Lehigh and other private institutions are so far out of that league its not funny (40k a year vs 10k). You are comparing apples and oranges. I went to a state university and for the most part (aside from lack of federal funding) they are fine.

You actually have two ends of the spectrum in private universities in the US, one end that is top dollar 30-40k a year where the kids parents are bank rolling/wiping their kids ass at every corner and want results while their kids dick around, and the other end where you have people getting charged higher than state college tuition rates for a high school education just to churn enough kids through the system to keep going.

When the student loan system collapses it will be largely due to these later private institutions that are cannibalizing the system.
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 05:26 AM   #17
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This has got to be a first...though I am not really all that surprised as when I was in college many of my classmates would argue with the professor for points.

http://news.yahoo.com/lehigh-univers...124956418.html

Honestly, I don't even think this should have come to trial...

Your avatar... I don't know what to say.

Im also going to sue my school if I get a C grade. BEst thing is: be lazy, don't study, get a C, sue school.

Thas a good plan.
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 07:06 AM   #18
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Your avatar... I don't know what to say.
.
got something against chickens??
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 02:02 PM   #19
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I'm talking about, for example, a media degree from UEL - which isn't worth the paper it's written on (especially in the media industry), let alone the 27,000 it will cost you. Many mid-level universities (Lincoln is one that comes to mind) have seen a rapid improvement in research capabilities.
One of the problems here is the word "university". In common parlance, it can mean several different, not necessarily mutually exclusive, things.

1) A big postsecondary learning institution. How big? Hard to say? Perhaps a yearly graduating class of at least 1000? Harvard is a "university", Dartmouth is a "college". I know of at least one "University" with something like 100 students per year and a handful of specialized degree programs.

2) A diverse postsecondary learning institution. How diverse? Dartmouth, a "college", has about 40 departments and interdisciplinary programs. Harvard has 15 separate schools, and Arts and Sciences alone seems to have about 48 undergraduate departments and programs. See counterexample above.

3) An institution with both undergraduate and graduate programs. Webster's says: "one made up of an undergraduate division which confers bachelor's degrees and a graduate division which comprises a graduate school and professional schools each of which may confer master's degrees and doctorates." But, by this definition, Dartmouth has been a university for the last 50 years, despite its smaller size. (And, a small institution can call itself a university if it feels like it.)

It seems to me that the University of East London (UEL) is a "university" by all of the definitions.

It seems to me that the real issue here, and, in other similar threads, is that a lot of people pay a lot of money for degrees in things for which there are either way too many grads for the number of jobs in practically every (Western) country -- Psychology being the poster child for this (there have been, and will be in the future, times when engineering also qualifies as well) -- or, for things which can be watered down, standards lowered, etc.. Psychology again being a problem; there is a big difference between a hard psych degree from a tough school with some heavy statistics requirements, for example, and a soft psych degree. (But even a very difficult degree in Classical Languages may not guarantee a job either.)

----

The relationship between higher education and jobs has always been loose, but, it didn't matter very much 100 years ago when only either the wealthy
or academically inclined went to college. Today, kids (and their parents) are told that they have to go to college to get a decent job. Or, indeed, any job. I think most of us are agreed that this doesn't make any sense. An expensive college degree should not be a requirement for being a Starbucks barista. And, as far as I know, it isn't.
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 02:29 PM   #20
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The judge has rejected her lawsuit. I am glad the judge did it.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/0...n_2691190.html
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 02:37 PM   #21
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The judge has rejected her lawsuit. I am glad the judge did it.
Good news. It sounded quite self-indulgent to me as well.
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 08:21 AM   #22
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If I paid a fortune for a degree, I should expect to get it.
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 08:51 AM   #23
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If I paid a fortune for a degree, I should expect to get it.
I would expect to earn it.
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 11:27 AM   #24
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I would expect to earn it.
Next time you buy something, why don't you ask the salesman if he thinks you've earned what you've just bought.
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 11:31 AM   #25
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Next time you buy something, why don't you ask the salesman if he thinks you've earned what you've just bought.
So, if I'm paying to go to a university, I shouldn't have to do any work?
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