Allow the use of desmos on the +Alg 2/trig test on 9/4/20

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Allow the use of desmos on the +Alg 2/trig test on 9/4/20

This petition made change with 16 supporters!
Concerned Student started this petition to Patrick Troy

Students have been using desmos to graph functions for the past two weeks. We have recently undergone a drastic change in our educational routine; we are cramming a semester worth of material into 9 weeks. The stress of a high level math course is normally fairly high. Added pressure due to the limited time to learn and practice the skills we need adds even more stress and anxiety to our students every day lives. Removing access to one of the most useful tools the night before the test is simply adding insult to injury for unnecessary reasons. 

We have been preparing for this test using desmos. We were told we would be allowed to use desmos. In fact, we were told we did not even need a calculator. The 'materials needed' section on the +algebra 2/trig schoology page states, "You do not need to buy a calculator. Desmos is available for free." Now, students who spent money on a calculator will have an advantage over students who have not spent money on a calculator. They will be able to graph their functions whereas students who didn't spend money won't. Those who spent the money will get the grades. Nothing about that is fair to students.To go back on the promise of desmos and change the regulation for the test the night before is simply cruel and unfair to all students participating. If, in the future, desmos is a website that will not be allowed on tests, that is fine. Students do, however, deserve more than a one night's notice. As such, we are calling for the use of desmos to be permitted on the test taking place on Friday, September 4, 2020. For future tests, this can be changed, but students must 'practice like they play.' We need to prepare for the test in the conditions the test will be given in. A change in test conditions would be like changing the height of a basketball hoop once the game starts. Players will be unable to make such a quick accommodation to this change.

With regard to cheating, of course it is wrong. Nobody should cheat at all, but, if it's going to happen, it's going to happen. There's no way to provide a guarantee with 100% certainty that nobody will cheat. In fact, taking away the use of desmos will probably encourage more students to cheat. Without the handy tool we've grown so comfortable using, finding answers or using a different method of solving will be a challenge to students. As such, cheating will be seen as a last resort, and students will turn to that with no other option. If we are permitted to use desmos, we can actually use our own knowledge we've been building to construct our answers. Isn't that what math is all about? 

Not allowing the use of desmos is adding stress and anxiety and will likely result in lower grades. Not allowing desmos is not even close to deterring cheating, but it actually encourages it, and it's unfair to take away on the night before the test. Students who have not paid extra money should not be punished with less access to resources promised to them. 

Let us use desmos on the test. 

 

 

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