The day 19 students failed my class

For CS 11, we decided to lower the passing grade to 280 points for both lab and lec. The rule was they have to pass both. Aside from lowering the passing mark, we decided to give a grade of INC for those who passed only one component and have a total score of 540 points and above. As completion, they have to pass a written exam (if they failed the lec part) or a hands-on exam (if they failed the lab part).

18 students was will have to pass the hands-on exam, 4 for the written exam. A total of 22 students (that’s 1 section!)

The Exam.

For the written exam, the questions are all from the 2 previous exams. While 2 questions on the hands-on exam is from the last exam (sequence exchange and matrix multiplication), 1 is a new problem (morse code), 1 is just a different implementation of matrix multiplication.

3 out 4 who took the written exam passed. By passed it means they were able to get 50% and above in the exam. If I followed the 60% passing rule, only 1 will pass.

Of the 18 who took the hands-on, 2 was able to answer the sequence exchange. The rest was not able to answer anything. To pass, they have to answer 2 out of 4 questions.

When the time was up, I can feel the heavy air around the room. I asked them if anyone will have their work checked. None answered. It was awkward, but I have to tell them to shutdown their computers already. It was sad. Very sad atmosphere for them and for me. Some approached me lightly after the exam to ask questions about enlistment or about shifting. A few almost cry.

I cannot do anything anymore. The professor is powerless on situations like this. We just compute grades. But of course, somewhere-sometime before this, I could have done something.