Commentary

Student Thoughts: Experienced Pass/ Fail

“I thought pass/fail English this Fall Term was a really good way to introduce Juniors to this year’s English curriculum, because there wasn’t the pressure of being graded. We were able to get a feel for what was expected of us, and I thought it was a great way to get everyone on the same page. It was also fun because I got to know my teacher and form a relationship with my class without having to be too stressed out!” Christina Peabody ’11 “I am not for the pass/fail English first term. I think that pass/fail English makes Junior Fall easier, but from what I have heard, at some point a ‘shock to the system’ is needed. Why not sooner than later? I think pass/ fail English is simply prolonging me one term to really try my hardest. I know I am not the greatest writer, so I’d rather start having to work hard the first term so I can be a better writer for longer, rather than just having to start putting in effort in English class starting Winter Term.” Dan Larson ’11 “I disliked pass/ fail English. I thought it was unnecessary and unfair to the students who were better at English. I didn’t think that some students who would be getting a 2 should have the same grade as someone who is getting a 6 in the course.” Julian Danziger ’11 “I think that the pass/fail grading system for Junior Fall English was really good for the new student’s adjustment. I would support the idea of applying the same system for the class of 2012. It would probably be helpful if the pass/fail system was applied to the subjects ‘11 had the most trouble with this past Fall Term. It would make the most sense to apply it to the classes everyone takes together, like History 100.” Edith Young ’11 Already Graded “[The new pass/fail system] is a positive move by the English department which seems to ease the transition to the rigors of academics at Andover. This creates a situation in which Junior students can become acquainted with the demands of English 100 without the additional burden of GPA-related anxiety.” Lauren Verdine ’10 “The change to the Fall Term of English 100 as a pass/fail course makes sense for those Juniors who might belabor during the transition into high school English; however, it does not account for those who struggle in other subjects. New students less adept at other subjects still must fret over the full grading system. If this change is to be fair to all Juniors, the pass/fail policy should be extended to other departments as well.” Anne Motlow ’09