Last week I put up a post about the way grades have changed over the last ten years or so at HW, and how that compares with a recent national study about grades over the last seventy years and the differences, in particular, between private and public grading.
This week the New York Times invited readers to submit questions to the author of the study, and the answers are interesting. An example:
There are no indications that college students have been getting better nationally and some indications that at the end of their four years they know less than a college graduate of the past. They study about 10 hours less per week than they did in the 1960s.
Some students do game the system. But that’s always been the case and it’s important to note that from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s average grades actually dropped. It would be hard to explain that drop on the basis of increasingly less savvy students. Something else drove that drop and that something else was likely a modest return to pre-Vietnam-era grading. Similarly, something other than increasingly savvy students is likely responsible for the gradual and persistent rise in grades since the mid-1980s.
You can read the rest of the piece here.