With the start of a new semester, the school has declared to run a test operation of a new grading policy for a year. To supplement and make the current grading system more flexible, all professors can now autonomously decide the evaluation of students’ grade, different from the previous system that set a quota for each letter grade.
The change was made to establish a better educational environment based on the spirit to provide a well-rounded education to students. For a year, including summer and winter sessions, professors can choose their grading evaluation, either to grade on a curve or to mark on an absolute scale. Previously, the standard grading policy in Ewha was to allot a maximum of 35, 35 and 30 percent of the class a letter grades of A, B, and C, respectively for each class, or 45, 45, and 10 percent for courses taught in English. However, according to the revised policy, which applies to all classes, students should now be aware of the different grading evaluation criteria set by each professor.
Some courses that have numerous divisions, such as College English, Essential English and classes for second foreign languages, will continue to use the previous grading criteria. Under the agreement of professors, this was done to ensure even distribution of students into different divisions, as students would be likely to choose the divisions taught by professors who have a more lenient grading system.
In the orientation sessions at the start of the new semester, professors explained their new grading criteria to students. Some professor including the class of U.S Minority Literature and Modern Poetry and Society have decided to revised percent of evaluation to recognize the efforts of the students in the merge of As and Bs. Other professors for courses such as Christianity and the World and Introduction to MIS decided to evaluate on absolute scale. Specifically for Christianity and the World and Introduction, the professor Jang Jung-eun said that he will be giving letter grades of A to all students who receive scores from 90 to 100, B to students scoring 80 to 89 and accordingly so that students do not need to compete against their friends to get the best grades.
Although some students are satisfied with the new policy, some have commented that the previous system was more desirable.
“I am afraid that some notorious professors in my major could get harsher on grading,” said a junior in College of Engineering who wanted to remain anonymous with worry in her voice. “They were known for giving many students a C and D, but with this changed grading system even more students could fall into that category. What if an exam is hard but the professor decides to mark on an absolute scale and everyone ends up getting Cs and Ds? I think the school should make a minimum standard to prevent this possible problem.”
In response to concerns over such a possible scenario, the Office of Registrar had this to say in response.
“Such situation which students are worrying about is a little too extreme, but it is possible with the changed policy,” said the Registrar. “For some classes, professors may decide to give fewer As and Bs to students, or they may maintain the previous criteria. But we will have to look at a number of issues and analyze several aspects once the test operation finishes.”