Volume 32, Issue 4, December 2009
Fair grading is modeled on two fundamental principles. The first principle is that grading should be impartial and consistent. The second principle is that a fair grade should be based on the student’s competence in the academic content of the course. I derive corollary principles of fair grading from these two basic principles and use them to evaluate common grading practices. I argue that exempting students from completing certain grade components is unfair, as is grading on attendance, class rank, deportment,
tardiness, effort, institutional values, moral virtues such as cheerfulness and helpfulness, and other non-course-content criteria.