Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Why We'd Feel Better Without GPAs

For most of my life, I didn't know what my grade point average or class rank were. We didn't have GPAs or class rank until until high school, and they weren't included on our high school report cards. I never checked my GPA or class rank until I needed them to apply to college. Things were different in college: every time grade came out, your GPA and rank were also included. I didn't want to see either of these things because they made me feel really bad. I got some bad grades during my first year at college, but I did well after that.  If I had only seen my new grades in the following years, I would have felt proud that I had improved so much, but because my GPA reflected my bad grades from the first year, I always felt like I wasn't doing well.  I always felt like I needed to do better to recover from my first year, but looking at my grades alone, I had already recovered.  And even though I don't care how well my grades compare to my classmates', seeing my class rank made me feel like I was doing really poorly in school, even though I was getting good grades by my own standards. I spent my entire time at college feeling like I wasn't doing well when I actually was doing well - all because I didn't have the option to see my grades without viewing my GPA and class rank. I think schools need to give us that option to only see what we want to see, because some of us just want to feel good.

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