University English: the blog for ESL students

December 17, 2010

Final Marks

Filed under: announcements — richardlstansfield @ 1:57 am

You can see your final marks next Thursday, December 23rd, on the Inha portal site,

If you think that there was a mistake, or have a question about your mark, contact me by leaving a comment here, at this blog site.

However, if there wasn’t a mistake, then the mark will not be changed. If you need a good grade because you need a scholarship, to stay in the student dormitory, etcetera, then you should study hard for it. The marks are based upon student rankings. If an “B” student goes up to an “A”, then an “A” student goes down to a “B”. This is unfair to the other student. They have a higher mark because they worked harder. You should not get a higher mark just because you complain. As I said, if you want a high mark, then work hard.

Remember that your English mark is:

80% = English Course

20% = Mid-term exam

So, even if I give you an “A” you might receive a “B” because of your mid-term exam.

You can retake any mark below a C+. So, if you have a mark below a C+, you can take the course again. If you do that, your old mark is deleted and replaced with the new mark, whether it is higher or lower.

Below is a letter from Jason Ham, formally one of the coordinators of the University English (UE) program at Inha University. What he says is similar to what I wrote above (but longer and more complex).


Dear UE Student:

UE conversation classes are planned and conducted by UE teachers and each student is awarded a score out of 80 in the conversation class based on their performance in the areas of attendance, participation, quizzes, tests, and/or any additional assignments. This score must be curved and no two students may receive the same score. The UE teacher does not directly control the score of the midterm, nor the final letter grade that is awarded to the student. The midterm score (out of 20) is added to the conversation class score (out of 80). The total (out of 100) is evaluated relative to the rest of the students in the student’s track and a letter grade is awarded by UE administration. The UE teacher is not informed of the student’s final letter grade unless an error occurs.

Each UE teacher runs their classes professionally and assesses each student fairly, so there is little point in trying to argue or negotiate for a higher score—most UE teachers increase their students’ raw marks to fit into the grading curve anyway (so final marks are generally already inflated). Under the current relative-evaluation system, ultimately controlled by the administration, there is really nothing the UE teacher can do to change a mark unless an error has been made.

Teachers may share individual raw results with students who would like to know how they did on particular assessments, but beyond that, if there is no formal complaint or error, it remains in the best interest of the student to accept the score that was awarded to them. I hope this helps clarify things for you.

Mr. Ham



  1. Hi. Mr. Stansfield.
    This is Christine a student of your class 100#
    I’m just asking you why I got A0?
    I did my all of homeworks and thought our problem was solved.

    I’m looking forward your reply. Thank you.

    Comment by Noh Jin Ju — December 23, 2010 @ 2:37 pm | Reply

    • As I said above, I give you a number out of 80. It is added to you mid-term mark, which is out of 20.
      (#/80 + #/20 = #/100)
      Then the number out of 100 is converted into an A, B, C, etc. If you want to know your mark out of 80, I can tell you that. If you would like to see your tests, listen to your speaking tests, etcetera, you can do that too.

      “I did my all of homeworks and thought our problem was solved.”

      So did many other students. Also, why are you unhappy with an A? Isn’t that a good mark?

      Comment by richardlstansfield — December 27, 2010 @ 1:28 am | Reply

      • Hello Mr. Stansfield.

        I’m happy that I could get A. But I expected to get A+ not A0.

        And I know you can change A0 to A+ and it’s up to you.

        Also I’d like to see my test marks but I’m working all the day so I can’t.

        If you don’t mind change my grade to +, please give me a new-year-present. 😉

        This semester is the last one to me, and I wish I get my grades all A+.

        Take care (This winter is terribly cold// T.T)

        Comment by Christine — December 29, 2010 @ 12:40 pm

  2. Please carefully read what I and Mr. Ham wrote above.

    “And I know you can change A0 to A+ and it’s up to you.”

    As I already said, to raise one student’s score requires that I lower another student’s score. I will not lower another student’s score. Every student with a higher mark than yours earned it through hard work. Also, as I already said, I only give you a number out of 80, which is added to your mid-term exam score (which is out of 20) to give you a combined number out of 100. That number is then converted into a grade (A+, A, A-, B+, etc.).

    I gave you a 75/80. (Originally, it was 67/80 but I increased it to 75.) Add that to your mid-term mark (out of 20) to get a number out of 100.

    I cannot change your final grade. It is not “up to me” despite what you believe. Look at what Mr. Ham said:

    “The UE teacher does not directly control the score of the midterm, nor the final letter grade that is awarded to the student.

    (emphasis mine)

    Again, read carefully what I and Mr. Ham wrote above.

    I hope you had a Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year.

    Comment by richardlstansfield — December 31, 2010 @ 4:37 am | Reply

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