Teaching Computer Science: Extra Credit

15 Apr 2015 /

I wish I got a dollar for every time a student asks, “Can I get extra credit for [insert action for which it makes no sense to give extra credit]?”

Today in class we did a difficult programming exercise. It wasn’t graded but I asked everyone to turn it in so I could evaluate the difficulty of the assignment.

“Can we get extra credit for turning it in?” a student asked me.

“How does it make sense to give extra credit for turning it in? Everyone is turning it in.”

“It raises everyone’s grades,” he said. “Like a rising tide lifts all boats.”


3 Comments on Teaching Computer Science: Extra Credit »

  1. -----

    16 Apr 2015 @ 5:02 am


    In keeping with the nautical theme, get a handheld air horn, paint it international orange, label it “GRADE INFLATION ALERT,” explain its purpose, and keep it handy.

  2. 16 Apr 2015 @ 9:52 am


    I like the air horn idea … I’ll get back to you for further advice the first time I blast a kid with it and his parents file a lawsuit.

  3. -----

    16 Apr 2015 @ 9:56 am


    Just a simple explanation, perhaps accompanied by a demonstration, at the beginning of each semester might be enough. Word of these things usually spreads quickly among students.

TrackBack URI

RSS feed for comments on this post

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>