Correcting an Incorrect Grade
It’s Thursday night. You’re sitting at your desk, staring at the computer screen, waiting for the grade report to update. With a small ping, it does. But…. the grade isn’t what you thought you would get. It’s considerably lower than what you were expecting, in fact. A feeling of dread overcomes you, as you double check the assignment, seeing where you went wrong. But as far as you can tell, you answered most, if not all, of the questions correctly. So what happened?
Believe it or not, errors like this are common. But fear not! There are a variety of things that can be done to help resolve this issue.
Check your grades regularly.
It doesn’t help your case if you’re trying to correct a grade that you received several months ago. Try to check your grades on at nightly basis. This way, you’re able to keep on top of what grades you have, and if any issues come up, you’re able to resolve them much quicker. Record your grades in a spread sheet. If you have an iPhone, the Grades 2 App is a great way to do this because you can also calculate your current grade in the class. (See the topic: Keeping Track of your Grades)
Talk to your teacher.
The most important step in getting your grades fixed is to talk to your teacher. How can your teachers know a mistake was made if you never tell them? Go to your teacher as soon as you can, and let them know that you think a mistake has been made. Be respectful. In most cases, the error was made by a grader and the teacher wants to help.
If you have any hopes of resolving a revised grade, be sure to keep track of any work related to the subject matter. A teacher is much more likely to believe that they gave you the wrong grade if you show them the assignment in question. Never get rid of any work, ever. That math assignment you’re about to throw away may have not been marked down in the grading book incorrectly!
Teachers have very busy schedules. If you simply mention that they “may” have gotten a grade for a minor homework incorrect, and ask them to take a look at it, it may slip their mind. Remind them on a regular basis until the issue is resolved. This works in combination with checking your grades on a regular basis. Put this in writing to your teacher via an email. That way you have an electronic record of what you did. A teaching assistant can also be helpful.
It’s entirely possible that you aren’t the only one who received an incorrect grade. The scantron scanner may have been programmed incorrectly, or the TA may have been looking at the wrong question while grading. Whatever the case, find other people who had the same issue as you. This helps to support your claim of an incorrect grade, and makes resolving the issue a higher priority for the teacher.
Almost every college student will have an experience with an incorrect grade at one time. The above strategies can correct the problem without creating a problem with the teacher..