Reduce the Need for a Curve
Reduce the Need for a Curve
We the People of CHE101 request a change in educational teaching standards this semester. Due to the unfortunate circumstances of classes being held virtually, it is rather challenging to grasp the information needed to pass our class.
Each week we must watch video lectures to understand what our discussion will be about. In each video lecture, the material spoken about is exactly what is written on each PowerPoint posted through UBLearns. The PowerPoints are in fact useful, but we do not need a lecture video to read them to us, we need lectures and lecture videos to give examples and go over each example step-by-step.
During the week, we also complete the discussion questions so we can go over them during our one class of the week. With over one-hundred students 40 minutes is simply not enough time to get through every question. We understand there are office hours, but we are asking for those to also be class hours instead so we can see more in depth step-by-step examples and get any questions we have answered.
I believe I can speak for all of us when I say we studied all week for our first quiz and did not receive the grade we expected. There were questions on that quiz we were never even taught (ex: nuclide) and it is hard to figure out how to use the tools you’re given when you don’t know what the question is referring to. Not to mention the periodic table was almost useless being that there were no charges on it. How are we expected to memorize the charges of 118 elements in a three-week span, plus polyatomic ions, plus formulas that are NOT on the formula sheet? It is just not possible. After spending all of the given time trying to figure out what exactly one question is asking, you end up not having enough time for the rest of the questions and if you do not submit your work it will not be saved. I know someone who didn’t even have the chance to take the quiz because of the Respondus Browser freezing, and ultimately, she failed it, because of something that was not even her fault.
I think that we are students in an introductory chemistry course and unfortunately, we have been teaching ourselves since the start of the semester. I believe college professors are not supposed to hold our hands, but I do not believe we are actually being taught material, instead just assumed to know the material. I ask you; how will we know what we are doing wrong if there is no one to guide us?
Aside from paying for this course, we have paid for the online textbook for homework and a lot of us are struggling to the point of having to pay for tutors as well. I, myself had tried scheduling a tutor from UB and she had cancelled on me. I am also now paying for a tutor because I cannot even schedule a tutoring session through UB because everything is booked.
This Friday, we will be having our first exam and I am confidently speaking for majority of the class that we are not prepared. Many of us also have other tests that exact day and it is going to be impossible to study for all three of them and do well on all three when we could not even do well on the quiz which we gave the entire week towards. Our stress levels are through the roof and when my classmates and I have reached out to our professor and instead of understanding, we were given a practice exam, mind you with no answer key (again, how will we know what we are doing wrong).
We originally did not want to make a petition, but we feel it has come to the point of necessity and there are “strength in numbers”. Please consider the struggles I have mentioned and please in your best efforts, try to accommodate us.