By Janelle Mathews
Campus Life Editor
As the end of the semester approaches, students can be seen writing paper after paper, endlessly studying for final exams, or frantically checking Blackboard for their grades; however, there are some students who are unable to check their grades on Blackboard because professors have not updated Blackboard or put in grades at all.
I find this very frustrating as a student. Granted, most students who are on top of things generally have an idea of whether or not they are passing a class, but not all students are that way. At the end of the semester, it is hard enough to function let alone do all the math to figure out a grade for a class if students happen to know all their scores in that class.
Also, just having a general idea of passing or not passing a class is not enough information for students. As students, we have GPA requirement to keep up as part of certain programs. For example, students in the Honors program have to maintain a 3.2 GPA overall. If grades are not in Blackboard early enough for a student, she might not have time to talk to her professor about what she can do to change the situation to improve her grade.
I know professors lead just as busy if not busier lives than students and are not required to update Blackboard, but I feel that updating Blackboard so that their students know their grades is an important aspect to keeping students up to date on their progress within classes. It shows students what classes they need to work harder in and what classes they do not have to worry about.
It keeps us informed about what we need to do to meet requirements grade-wise. If students do not have that information, they might not necessarily know. Yes, students can always talk to their professors, but if students knew their grades were on Blackboard, they would not have to waste precious time for everyone involved by setting up a meeting with their professors.
In my case, half of my professors have grades posted in Blackboard, but these grades are not current. My most recent work is not there, which does not give me an accurate perspective of my overall grade in these classes. The other half of my professors have not listed any grades at all. For the most part, I do know whether or not I’m passing; it is just a matter of my letter grade and GPA that I do not know. If I did know all my up-to-date grades, I would know which test to study for just a bit harder and which test I could relax more on.
I know that Viterbo’s contract with Blackboard is up very soon, and we have purchased new software for spring 2013. All I ask is that professors take a little bit more time out of their day to update grades so that students can be more informed about their grades which will benefit both students and professors.