Friday, November 28, 2008

The déjà vu quiz

As an experiment borne out of my own curiosity, I gave the exact same quiz to the class as I did last week. Same questions, same order, and I returned their papers to them last Monday. I did add five more items to cover new material but eliminated those in my analysis, and I made some allowances for some minor bouts of dyslexia.

How did they fare?

First, the good news: whereas only 6 people passed the quiz last week (using a cutoff of 60%), now 14 people passed. Two people even managed to get perfect scores, these being the ones who also showed the most improvement.

Then the bad news: those 14 people still represent less than 50% of the class population.

And you want even worse news? Two people who flunked last week managed to score even lower.

So you can see for yourself, here are the actual test results. I removed those who only took one test.

Class     Student     Quiz1      Quiz2
IT AA 8 9
IT AB 8 9
IT AC 8 9
IT AD 8 8
IT AE 7 9
IM AF 6 7
IT BA 5 10
IT BB 5 7
IM BC 5 6
IT BD 4 10
IM BE 4 7
IM BF 4 7
IM CA 4 6
IM CB 4 5
IM CC 4 5
IM CD 4 5
IT CE 4 4
IM CF 4 4
IM DA 4 4
IM DB 4 3
IM DC 4 3
IT DD 3 6
IM DE 3 4
IT DF 3 4
IT EA 2 5
IM EB 2 4
IM EC 1 3
IM ED 0 5
IM EE 0 4
IM EF 0 2

Those who persist on dwelling in the lower half of the class are overwhelmingly IM students, the ones who seem the least interested in hearing what I have to say. In fact, it looks like they're all lost in some glassy-eyed haze.

I wonder why that is. Is it a motivational issue? Are they negatively influenced by their companions? Or perhaps they're really just couldn't care less.

It makes me curious as to what their life orientations are. What they look forward to do after school and, at the risk of sounding harsh, why they even bother with school at all.

Now a new question is coalescing in my mind: would it *actually* be possible for me to flunk half of the class if I use the same quiz over and over again over the course of the semester?

Seriously though, I'm afraid to find out.


  1. Obviously more than half of your students are in the wrong class. They must have mistaken PHP for Philippine Peso and MySQL their own sequel to their favorite movie. they may have thought Linus Torvald is a dashing action star. LOL.

  2. The motivation is a very good question, Dom. There's an implied lesson here - that one's motivation for being in a class has a significant bearing on what one gets from it. I would actually suggest presenting this to your class one day, if only to call attention to their own circumstances and seeing if they can take the hint.

    That said, I've had a Philosophy teacher pull that very same stunt on one of my classes before. I think I got the same grade the second time around, but then again, I hardly understood anything of the lesson back then.

  3. @Bong: That lumpy guy? No way! ;-)

    @Sean: I'm afraid that if I put it in those terms, I'll get even more glassy-eyed stares. I did point out the lesson: never to dwell in ignorance; if you don't know, find out. Sigh. Even that seems to have been lost.

    But this is only the surface of the story. I have more thoughts on this matter, just waiting to find time to write them down.

  4. i think i got the same score. waaaaaa i already know the answers of my 2 mistakes...but i forgot their correct spelling...waaaa....well, i think i pass... tsk tsk...have to be cautious with my forgetful mind...sigh..this is worth remembering...