Contemplating the rest of the semester

Exam #2 has been graded. Scores are based on a 100-point scale just like the first exam and are written in a box on the last page of the exam.

You can pick up your exam from Kathy Kennedy on Wednesday of Fall Break, or from Alan on Thursday and Friday of Fall Break.
The median score was 67 (median for exam #1 was 73). 12 students scored 80 or more. 35 students scored between 60-79. 22 more students scored below 59.

If you scored less than a passing grade, or merely less than you would have liked, this is a good time to examine how you prepared for the exam. Clearly, in one sense or another, you did not prepare as well as you would have liked, but you need to get as specific as you can. Here are some questions that might help with this:

  1. Am I able to find as much time for study as I really need?
  2. Am I able to identify the instructor’s objectives?
  3. Am I able to find materials that address these objectives?
  4. Am I able to use these materials?

Study is basically a task of self-improvement. There’s a subject X. It might be something new, or it might be something difficult, but you would like to know it better and attain a certain level of understanding and performance. These questions should help you focus on what you need to do.

Unfortunately, it’s not unusual to tell ourselves that we are meeting our goals even when there’s clear evidence to the contrary. Exam scores provide that kind of clear evidence. If your score was significantly lower than what you had expected, or can afford to live with, that’s a clear sign that you are not meeting your study goals. You need to find out why. Again, finding answers to these questions might help.

I strongly encourage everyone who has questions about the course, or who wishes to improve in some way, to come see me. My door is open.

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