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Students Weigh In on the 100-Point Grading System Debate

Students Weigh In on the 100-Point Grading System Debate

How do students feel about the 100-point grading system? Last week, educator Brianna Crowley started a series of posts reflecting on the current grade system. In her first post, Crowley shared with readers why she began to deeply question the role of grades in her classroom. This week, Crowley shared what happened when she asked students what they think about the grading system. 

According to Crowley in her article on, she used a tech tool called Padlet, and "posed the following three questions to my freshman and junior students:

  1. What’s the purpose of grading?
  2. Is it a positive or negative influence on learning?
  3. What should change?

"This assignment was NOT graded, and was completely optional. But I found my students jumped in without hesitation," Crowley wrote. "Even students who seem to drag their feet at the simplest request, seemed eager to share their ideas."

One student, Rachel, wrote: "The purpose of grading is for colleges to see how intelligent you are," according to the article. Readers can see the original responses here.

"Many of my students pointed out the negative effects of grades on a student’s mental and emotional health," Crowley wrote. "Lauryn shares that 'grading can create this feeling of anxiety because a student has to find a way to raise a bad grade to feel accomplished.'"

Another student, Kathy, wrote the following: "I feel like grading has a negative effect. It labels people by how their [sic] doing in a number. Students don't care about whether we understand the material or not. As long as we have a good grade is all that matters. It's more about how much information you remember, not how well we understand it in some subjects. Grades make students more competitive about the grade rather than the actual knowledge."

Crowley, however, said that not all students saw the grading system negatively. One student, Bobby, wrote the following:

The purpose of grading always depends on the person that's being graded. Students with a fixed mind set use the grading system as an opportunity to achieve perfection on one test. Students with a fixed mind set use grades to either prove accomplishment or failure. Students with a growth mind set use the grading system as an opportunity to improve themselves and their work. Whether it's a positive or negative influence completely relies on the student.

Read the full story and comment below.

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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