A grading injustice

Throughout our academic lives, numbers have been important; get a good SAT score, worry about your class rank, and even number of extracurricular activities your involved in. But the most important number, stalking students from year to year, is the almighty GPA. It’s the 3-digit number that determines so much. At UVM, we have a plus-and-minus system in place for calculating GPAs. Receive a B minus and you will get a 2.67, whereas a B plus will get you a 3.33. There is where there is a problem with the University’s system. I am talking about students scoring in the 90’s range. Surely if I’m penalized for getting a 92 with a 3.67, I must be rewarded for getting a 98 with a 4.33, right? Not at UVM. Students receiving an A minus are penalized when the grade is reflected in GPA form because students receiving an A plus do not get a bump. Besides being extremely annoying, this is unfair to the student body. Within the B range, students are punished and rewarded equally, a third of a point penalty for achieving an 82, and a third of a point reward for achieving an 88, but where’s the equity in the A range? With the GPA playing such an important role for those applying to post-undergraduate institutions, we can’t afford to be implementing an unfair approach to calculating it. Not only am I getting penalized for achieving an A minus, unlike students from other schools who are applying to the same post-undergraduate institutions, but I don’t even get to balance it out with an A plus. One of the official values of the University is justice: “we unite against all forms of injustice.” While this may be a much smaller issue of justice than that of a livable wage, or genocide in Sudan, it is nonetheless an injustice. I don’t think this issue warrants a four-day tent city sit-in, or a field of flags, but the solution is simple: change the policy. Stop treating UVM students unfairly and stop putting us at a disadvantage when we apply to continue our education.