Category Archives: Administrivia

“Fault” Is a Swear Word

In my classroom, “fault” is a swear word. I don’t let my students use the words “fault” or “blame” because assessing blame takes up time and effort and doesn’t solve anything. +3-3

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The Case for Retakes

On the AP-Chem listserv, Adrian Dingle remarked: “I prefer pilots that ‘pass’ the test EVERY time they attempt to land an aircraft, not the second time they try.” Personally, I’d rather fly with a pilot who has had problems and … Continue reading

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Combatting Cheating

At the beginning of the year, I choose a number between 0 and 1000 to two decimal places and write it on a piece of paper. I offer 100% on the first test to any student in the room who … Continue reading

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Extensions

I give extensions rather freely. My students know that they need to ask at least two days in advance (longer for major assignments), and they need to have an acceptable reason, and provide supporting documentation (which I follow up on). … Continue reading

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Credit Instead of Extra Credit

I’ve had great success with allowing unlimited re-tests (until the end of the grading period), with a maximum re-test grade of 90%. +50

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Administering a Hard Lesson

One of my students turned in a science fair project that turned out to be his sister’s project from last year. I find it amazing that he thought he could get away with it. His sister’s project won second prize … Continue reading

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Academic Integrity

I gave my honors chemistry II students a lab practicum for their mid-term exam on Friday. I divided them into of three students per group (assigned randomly) and gave the groups two problems to solve and write up (in a … Continue reading

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