Paul Goodman’s proposal to abolish grading
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A Proposal to Abolish Grading is a piece by Paul Goodman who raises many important questions about the current educational system inducted by the majority of universities. In this essay I will be both analyzing and evaluating this piece and what it’s purposes to the best of my ability. I think that the most important question or thesis of this piece is the question of would it be beneficial to eliminate the current process of grading at a few prestigious universities. Is this a logical I idea and how does he present it. How would this effect the level of competence on any subject a student is learning about? How would grad schools and employers know what a student has learned? Does grading hinder teaching in a way that creates a bad spirit? These are a few of many questions that arise with this proposal.
What does Goodman mean when he refers to his idea as being a modest innovation? Goodman thinks it is but I would have to disagree because it seems to be such a huge step for our educational system. If grading has become the essence of learning to many students, is it modest to change this essence? Does grading detour students from the ingenuity of a subject and leave them to retain less than if testing was used only for pedagogic purposes as teachers feel fit. I think it is a great but obvious fact that some as Goodman believe grading hinders teaching and creates a bad spirit.
Paul Goodman goes on to raise what I think are very good or important questions in backing up his thesis. The purpose of this work is to raise question about our educational system and at the same time express views of why this would be a modest innovation in the eyes of Paul Goodman. This piece has brought many issues about grading into more of a light for me as the reader and I feel it would for anyone therefore is a successful work in my eyes. One important strength I feel Goodman has is bringing up the ancient philosopher Socrates. Should educational techniques be based on shame and ingenuous idealism rather than power drives to Quote Goodman? Does this mean learning is more about self-awareness then pleasing the written exam? I think this goes hand in hand with another great point in witch Goodman looks at the medieval universities. They did not use grades but instead the accepting of peers. Did the medievalists know what a good job was or was it of little concern in the greater scheme of education. These are essential point in the fulfillment of Goodman’s piece.
In wrapping Goodman’s essay up I find more strength and fewer weaknesses. How should teachers react to a lazy student? Do they have to except that at a certain point they must treat the student as an adult? I think this is all a teacher can do to insure that the trauma cycle not be continued. Do many bright students get bullied into passing a class and retain nothing only because there life is meant to take another direction but can’t because of an uncertainty? This is a valid point or theory but seems it is too hard to prove. Maybe it is proven in that retaining nothing is a failure even when the student receives his passing grade.
I feel that Goodman’s tone is that of a concerned scholar who feels strongly about the way grading has become such a big part of a student’s education. I also feel that he has the stance of one who knows to well the flawed educational system and think it unintelligent to stay performing a vicious cycle in witch students are the victim of a computer wreaking its will.
In conclusion Paul Goodman points to a few really good key points to leave us thinking about. One of these is that a good teacher can recognize a flunking student who is ready and eager to learn in the right setting. This teacher could intervene and help to fight the cycle. But this could only be a solution if all teachers were aware and against this cycle. For Goodman’s closing sentence, but the computer wreaks its will. Intern what I think Goodman is saying is that the program must be reconfigured in order to be fixed. This piece by Paul Goodman was very effective in performing the desired function. His middle paragraphs work very well in supporting the thesis or main idea. The conclusion was quick and wrapped this piece up nicely. The piece was good in length not to be drawn out. In conclusion this was a well-organized and successful piece.