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Biochem Class

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by DocRunner07, Jun 14, 2008.

  1. DocRunner07

    DocRunner07 2+ Year Member

    Jun 22, 2007
    So I am taking a 5 week Biochem class this summer and we got our first test back last week. I kid you not the average in a class of 100+ was 47 out of 100. There was 1 B, 2 Cs, and the rest were 65 or below!! So after class a couple of people went up to talk to the professor to see if there would be a curve...(the proff. speaks poor English and it took a while for them to get their question across and then longer for him to explain his answer) the end results was he does not curve and he was pissed that they asked him. I figured he was just pissed off because the grades were so poor so I swung by his office a couple days latter to ask again my self. Now I got one of the Cs after studying my butt off and so felt pretty good about my grade, believing that he was going to have to curve with grades so poor. So I talked to him about it and his belief is " I teach class well enough everyone should take A, you not study enough or not understand basic concepts, but I no curve becuase class intelligence level is too low". Well I just smiled and said OK and walked out but was pretty pissed off. Any one ever have an experience like this? How did it turn out? I know he technically does not have to curve but when the avg. is 47, obviously he is doing something it worth bringing to the dean or is this pretty common?
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  3. Caesar

    Caesar In Memory of Riley Jane Physician Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    hSDN Alumni
    meh, it's his class.He isn't required to dole out A's so I'd say you are probably stuck with it. In my observations, prof's talk and if word gets around that you complain about grading it could hurt you in other classes.
  4. ChubbyChaser

    ChubbyChaser Yummmy 2+ Year Member

    Apr 14, 2007
    If everything else ends up around a 50...he will be obligated to curve the final grades, and if not he will probably lose his job.
  5. TehDoc

    TehDoc What a pain... 2+ Year Member

    Jan 5, 2008
    Low stats in his class = poor job performance
  6. redlight

    redlight Senior Member :D 5+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2008
    you can have your prof write a letter to be included in our app to mention his (atypical?) grading... or just have him write where you rank in the class.. something like that. i'm sure the amcas will have some sort of procedure for people who had profs with abnormal grading...right?
  7. nikeshp

    nikeshp Banned 2+ Year Member

    May 14, 2008
    i doubt it
  8. Caesar

    Caesar In Memory of Riley Jane Physician Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    hSDN Alumni
    no. You get the grade you get.
  9. redlight

    redlight Senior Member :D 5+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2008
    edit: nvm
  10. DenaliView

    DenaliView 2+ Year Member

    Jan 13, 2008
    Talk to some of the department heads and explain your class average and the amount of time you have personally put into your studies. See if this helps. Sometimes it will cause them to put a little pressure on your prof and they will come back and "magically" have changed thier mind.
  11. scottyT

    scottyT Real Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 19, 2006
    Mountain View, CA
    Sounds eerily like a situation I had when I took biochem in college. The prof said in response to complaints about the lack of curve, "low grades indicate a problem with the learning, not a problem with the teaching." I got like a 38 or something on the first exam after studying my ass off. He wouldn't even drop the questions that every student missed. Coincidentally these questions were the ones where he disagreed with the author of our text and told us that a wrong answer is still wrong, even if it's in the textbook. I mean WTF? If you can't trust your primary source then where do you go? I wound up getting an A in the class because I did really well on the final and it replaced my whole grade. I've noticed that many European and foreign instructors have similar policies; I think a lot of foreign institutions put more weight on a cumulative exam at the end. But I digress...

    You have to nip this in the bud. You CANNOT accept a sub-par grade in this class and try to explain that it was the prof's fault later on. Talk to your department if he won't listen to reason. Get several students together to back you on this. Also, start attending his office hours and get him to explain every last question you missed in detail. After you get a feel for what he wants and how he thinks it may help you to get better grades on the tests. I dissected every single question I missed on my biochem exams in my prof's office and annoyed the hell out of him until I understood exactly what he expected.
  12. Nasem

    Nasem 2+ Year Member

    Aug 30, 2006
    Lansing, MI
    47% isn't too horrible....

    My calc based physics 1 course back in my undergrad years had averages in the 20s-low 30s (now THAT required a curve)

    There are 2 things you need to worry about... Is this a brand new professor? If yes, chances are both of you (students and the professor) are screwed... why ? Because....
    One) alot of new professors don't fully underestand that if this is thier first time teaching and more than 1/2 of the class fails or ends up getting 1.0s, they normally get fired right away
    Two) since 1/2 of his class is failing, indicating that no curve was applied, therefore, you might end up with a C in the class (or however way you perform in the new couple of weeks)

    My friend was in a VERY similar situation.... brand new pre-calc professor with broken up english started teaching at MSU, make story short, the average of the class was in the 40s or 50s (can't remember fully), the professor never applied a curve, she basically graded as-is, and basically failed more than 60% of the class (and wer talking about a huge 400+ student class).... During the time she was teaching, many of the students (including my friend) went and personally spoke to her, she would get very attitudy everytime anyone brought up the word "curve", .....anyways she was fired from MSU after that semester was over

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