Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Exploring student understanding of grades and report cards
by Gwidt, Kathleen M., Ph.D., Marian University, 2010, 206; 3446876
Abstract (Summary)

This qualitative study was designed to identify how students from a single high school in the rural Midwest perceive grades and report cards. Stratified purposeful random sampling resulted in the inclusion of 14 students who provided journal entries and participated in one-on-one interviews for the purpose of exploring student understanding of grades and report cards.

A broad spectrum of learning theory was explored and interpreted as foundational to better understand how students perceive grades and report cards. Recurring themes of communication, relationships, learning, and motivation were extracted from the stories students told.

Students who participated in this study appeared to be either too focused on grades, or not focused on them at all. Academic underachievers were not motivated specifically by grades or report cards. Academic achievers reported grades and report cards as having value as external motivators related to learning. Stories these students told indicated they were motivated by performance goals in an attempt to gain positive judgment of their competence.

Identifying and analyzing aspects of grading and reporting perceived as effective or ineffective by students could aid educators in the development of improved practice and policy. Findings from this study should be used as a point of reference as work continues in the reform of grading and reporting systems.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Bugenhagen, Marilyn J.
School: Marian University
School Location: United States -- Wisconsin
Source: DAI-A 72/04, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership, School administration, Curriculum development
Keywords: Achievement, Grading, Grading policy, Report cards, Student perceptions
Publication Number: 3446876
ISBN: 978-1-124-51312-6
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