Jump to content
lawplicant

Lower grades at a more competitive school?

Recommended Posts

7 minutes ago, DenningsSkiTrip said:

Yup, can’t say I disagree with anything you’re saying. And I don’t really think it helps anyone or makes anyone feel better about their grades. 

Sorry, I'm already on my horse here. I remember the admin explaining to us that it made sense for 90% of the class to be seen as average-or-above because that's where we stand as a group relative to our undergraduate cohort. As if "you're good at this compared to people who don't do this" was a quality that could ever, in any reasonable or completely unreasonable world, in Toronto or Narnia, matter.

If there is any one thing I wish I could say to the admin of UT it is that we are not quite as stupid as they think we are - they should find some better marketing tags for their silly systems. 

 

Edited by theycancallyouhoju
  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, drankcoffee said:

Ps are a B- to a C? I was led to believe they were anything around a B (by the records office). 

Compared to Osgoode, where only 25% of the class tends to get anything less than a B...  makes me wonder why U of T chose to switch to this system. A B at Osgoode is going to be easier to attain and look much better on a transcript than a P from U of T, which people apparently consider to be "B- to C" regardless of whatever U of T admin says. 

I didn't address this - how can that be true? Do more than 90% of Osgoode students get a B or higher? I've never read an exam someone got an LP on and never received one myself, but I did get Ps in upper year classes for which I knew very close to absolute zero.

Don't take anything UT admin says at face value. Remember that they're marketing to you. There is nothing to justify looking at a university differently from how you look at a car salesman. If they saw their public function as more important than their personal success and revenues, they would release data and invite public scrutiny, encourage student ambassadors to honestly discuss what they don't like about the school with prospective students, etc. They will never do that. They want your cash. 

Edited by theycancallyouhoju
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, theycancallyouhoju said:

I didn't address this - how can that be true? Do more than 90% of Osgoode students get a B or higher? I've never read an exam someone got an LP on and never received one myself, but I did get Ps in upper year classes for which I knew very close to absolute zero.

Don't take anything UT admin says at face value. Remember that they're marketing to you. There is nothing to justify looking at a university differently from how you look at a car salesman. If they saw their public function as more important than their personal success and revenues, they would release data and invite public scrutiny, encourage student ambassadors to honestly discuss what they don't like about the school with prospective students, etc. They will never do that. They want your cash. 

Not sure where the 90% number comes from, it's actually 75%. It is on the Osgoode Law handbook, link is here: https://www.osgoode.yorku.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Student-Handbook-2016-2017.pdf. For classes over 30 people (i.e. the majority of them?), the grade distribution at the lower end is 20% C/C+, <5% D/D+/F. They don't have minuses (like most schools). So only <25% of the class gets less than a B. I've heard similar things from Western - that only the bottom quartile of the class gets less than a B grade. Doesn't that place students that go to U of T at a disadvantage? Not only is it harder to stay above the curve at U of T, but the grading system inherently puts you at a disadvantage because it groups together Cs and Bs?

Wouldn't it just make more sense if U of T placed C students in the LP range? That is what the grade is there for. They say it is give to up to 15% of the class, which would fall closer in line with Osgoode. I don't understand what the purpose in grouping Bs and Cs is. I've had professors assign a "+" to my P (although it doesn't end up being sent to the records office) just so I can know where I stand compared to 60% of the class... who does this benefit? Is the excuse of "it placates students into thinking they are B students" actually what they think? I would rather get a B than a P any day - the ambiguity (like I said) is negative. 

Actually, your comment about LPs surprises me. They've really been stressing that LPs are given out frequently. If no one actually gets them, then what is the point of this system? 

My least favourite part of this is: how does this all average out? When you are given A/B/C grades, it's kind of intuitive to look at a transcript and be able to see where a student's GPA is. What is a 3H 4P student? What is a 2HH 2H 3P student? How do you know if you are "above" the curve (if you're not getting straight Hs, that is)?

Does this system really sell the school better? I've been confused about it since before I enrolled, it has always been kind of a negative. Who are the UT admin listening to that tells them this system works?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, drankcoffee said:

Not sure where the 90% number comes from, it's actually 75%. It is on the Osgoode Law handbook, link is here: https://www.osgoode.yorku.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Student-Handbook-2016-2017.pdf. For classes over 30 people (i.e. the majority of them?), the grade distribution at the lower end is 20% C/C+, <5% D/D+/F. They don't have minuses (like most schools). So only <25% of the class gets less than a B. I've heard similar things from Western - that only the bottom quartile of the class gets less than a B grade. Doesn't that place students that go to U of T at a disadvantage? Not only is it harder to stay above the curve at U of T, but the grading system inherently puts you at a disadvantage because it groups together Cs and Bs?

Wouldn't it just make more sense if U of T placed C students in the LP range? That is what the grade is there for. They say it is give to up to 15% of the class, which would fall closer in line with Osgoode. I don't understand what the purpose in grouping Bs and Cs is. I've had professors assign a "+" to my P (although it doesn't end up being sent to the records office) just so I can know where I stand compared to 60% of the class... who does this benefit? Is the excuse of "it placates students into thinking they are B students" actually what they think? I would rather get a B than a P any day - the ambiguity (like I said) is negative. 

Actually, your comment about LPs surprises me. They've really been stressing that LPs are given out frequently. If no one actually gets them, then what is the point of this system? 

My least favourite part of this is: how does this all average out? When you are given A/B/C grades, it's kind of intuitive to look at a transcript and be able to see where a student's GPA is. What is a 3H 4P student? What is a 2HH 2H 3P student? How do you know if you are "above" the curve (if you're not getting straight Hs, that is)?

Does this system really sell the school better? I've been confused about it since before I enrolled, it has always been kind of a negative. Who are the UT admin listening to that tells them this system works?

If I remember right, only about 5-10% of UT students get an LP in reality. So, 90% of UT students get above an LP. Therefore, easier to get a P at UT than to get a B at Osgoode.

Yes, they think it reduces stress. They also think it makes it harder for the firms to sort out who is a B student and who is (talent-wise) a true C student. Their whole point is to tell the job market that they think a bottom-quartile student at UT is as good as a median student at Osgoode. The job market reacted by not in any way whatsoever increasing the number of UT students they picked up.

You will never hear UT admit that anyone in their school is not brilliant, talented, handsome or charming. That's not the way you talk to people if you think they have a backbone (unless you're their mom). 

Edited by theycancallyouhoju
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair to the admin, they have to deal with a significant segment of the student body that thinks a program that's harder to fail than kindergarten, where everyone is a B student with a little star-sticker next to their name, and where 50% of the class get a job before they're required to learn what you do in those jobs, is an irresponsibly and dangerously stressful cauldron of oppression.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just for everyone's reference, the grading profile at Osgoode for lecture courses (30 or more students) is:

  • A (15%, with a max 1/3rd being A+)
  • B (60%, with a max 1/3rd being B+)
  • C (20%, with a max 2/3rd being C+)
  • D-F (5%, no max on D+ grades)

The curve can fluctuate by 5%, which basically makes Ds and Fs discretionary, though it's my understanding that several profs do regularly give them.

It's not available anywhere online, but 2015-16's overall averages (i.e., the percentage of students who achieved a certain average) were:

  • A+ (1% 1L, 1% 2L, 2% 3L)
  • A (10% 1L, 14% 2L, 13% 3L)
  • B+ (33% 1L, 45% 2L, 41% 3L)
  • B (40% 1L, 32% 2L, 35% 3L)
  • C+ (12% 1L, 7% 2L, 8% 3L)
  • C (3% 1L, 1% 2L, 1% 3L)
  • F (1% 1L, 0% 2L, 0% 3L)

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, Ryn said:

Just for everyone's reference, the grading profile at Osgoode for lecture courses (30 or more students) is:

  • A (15%, with a max 1/3rd being A+)
  • B (60%, with a max 1/3rd being B+)
  • C (20%, with a max 2/3rd being C+)
  • D-F (5%, no max on D+ grades)

The curve can fluctuate by 5%, which basically makes Ds and Fs discretionary, though it's my understanding that several profs do regularly give them.

It's not available anywhere online, but 2015-16's overall averages (i.e., the percentage of students who achieved a certain average) were:

  • A+ (1% 1L, 1% 2L, 2% 3L)
  • A (10% 1L, 14% 2L, 13% 3L)
  • B+ (33% 1L, 45% 2L, 41% 3L)
  • B (40% 1L, 32% 2L, 35% 3L)
  • C+ (12% 1L, 7% 2L, 8% 3L)
  • C (3% 1L, 1% 2L, 1% 3L)
  • F (1% 1L, 0% 2L, 0% 3L)

 

Thanks for the information, it is certainly very interesting.

So let's say Osgoode and UofT's class are identical in terms of academic ability - would it be preferable to be under UofT's grading system? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, BayStreetOrBust said:

Thanks for the information, it is certainly very interesting.

So let's say Osgoode and UofT's class are identical in terms of academic ability - would it be preferable to be under UofT's grading system? 

We have a test case already - UT itself changed. OCI hiring was not affected. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, BayStreetOrBust said:

Thanks for the information, it is certainly very interesting.

So let's say Osgoode and UofT's class are identical in terms of academic ability - would it be preferable to be under UofT's grading system? 

Have you read the thread up until this point? Not really. As @theycancallyouhoju pointed out, the placement numbers haven't changed since they made the switch in 2012. If anything, one could argue it stagnated while other schools saw slight improvements in placement. 

Not to mention, look at those Osgoode 2L stats. 60% of the class got a B+ or higher. Compare this with 55% of any given U of T class being given a "P" which ranges from a B to a C. 

No, I don't think U of T's grading system is preferable. I don't think that it detracts from the quality of the school, however.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair, the theory given to students was that it would make differentiating among us harder for the firms - which could plausibly mean that it benefits students on the lower end of the hirability spectrum. That would be harmful to stronger students, though. One would think that would increase the roll of the nebulous 'fit' and resume assessment - which sounds awful. 

Edited by theycancallyouhoju
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, theycancallyouhoju said:

To be fair, the theory given to students was that it would make differentiating among us harder for the firms - which could plausibly mean that it benefits students on the lower end of the hirability spectrum. That would be harmful to stronger students, though. One would think that would increase the roll of the nebulous 'fit' and resume assessment - which sounds awful. 

Beat me to it.

 

McGill has something similar, but done differently. It's a very very very tight B curve. Very very few As given out, and the class breakdown for last year's first year students was (remembering no A+s are allowed at McGIll)

 

<1% class had a GPA between 3.7-4

16% class had GPA between 3.3-3.69

15% class had GPA between 3.15-3.29

19% class had GPA between 3.00-3.14

38% class had GPA between 2.7-3.0

12% class had GPA between 2.0-2.69

 

top 10 percent of 1Ls had GPA at or above 3.37, while top 20 percent of them had GPA at or above 3.22. 

 

They love to say how we're all special, and went through a very rigorous selection process, and that the value in our cohort is not only in our academic ability, but our supposedly magnificent backgrounds. So as a result, they keep the curve very tight so it's difficult to distinguish between students. What they don't seem to realize, is that McGill isn't Harvard, or Yale, or Stanford, or a school with a similar pull of employers to those. Our OCI numbers aren't a "if you want it, you'll get it", so instead of reducing our stress (by thinking we'll actually buy the whole we're magical unicorns talk", we stress more because it becomes that much more difficult to distinguish ourselves in the hiring process. This, counter-intuitively, as you said, ends up helping moreso those with connections, over ones without, which is just brutal (especially considering Quebec's, let's say, less than egalitarian views (relative to other provinces) towards diversity in hiring).

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"You are all future titans of the corporate world and champions of justice and peace in the face of oppression and war. You will command board rooms, defend war criminals, lead political parties, argue in front of the Supreme Court, and bear the burden of a single mother's fight for justice. But, I mean, we can't really ask you to cope with the sort of pressure an actual grade curve would present."

Edited by theycancallyouhoju
  • Like 4
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, theycancallyouhoju said:

To be fair, the theory given to students was that it would make differentiating among us harder for the firms - which could plausibly mean that it benefits students on the lower end of the hirability spectrum. That would be harmful to stronger students, though. One would think that would increase the roll of the nebulous 'fit' and resume assessment - which sounds awful. 

Awful. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought P/H/HH was a very sloppy attempt at falsely equivocating U of T to HYS. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Eeee said:

I thought P/H/HH was a very sloppy attempt at falsely equivocating U of T to HYS. 

HH = A

H.  = B

P = C

LP = D

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×