Get the CHIPS essays remarked by external markers
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The prompt for our CHIPS essay was "What do you see as the goal(s) of psychology and what are the method(s) by which they should be achieved?". We were told that "Because opinions about the goal of psychology differ, there is no right or wrong answer. However, [the] essay should present a reasoned argument to support your choice of goal(s) and method(s)." Many people had coherent arguments throughout, and their method(s) backed up their goal(s) as requested. However, the grades we received were quite low (with an average of a 59/60 for all the markers) with one frequent reproach stating that the question was not understood or answered properly. We received very contradictory critiques and inconsistent feedback from the markers. Some of us were told that the goal of the essay was not identifiable despite obviously stating that "the goal of psychology is..", we were told that out viewpoints were not clear despite visibly stating what our beliefs were. The question was ill-defined, subjective, and was unrelated to the course material. Although we were asked about our opinion, we seem to have been marked down for having our own beliefs on what the goals of psychology should be, and the fact that they differed from what we were somehow expected to write. Some suggestions that we were given were to use "understanding the rules of apperception; establishing the building blocks of mental representations; providing advice for teachers, prison wardens etc.; predicting and controlling behaviour, understanding the interaction of mental representations; understanding and helping individuals" as the goals of psychology, and use "experiments, observation, introspection, animal studies and interviewing" as some possible methods, yet when we did so we were marked down for not understanding/answering the question.
We propose that our essays are remarked by external markers to ensure that our grades are accurate and fair according to the marking criteria and what we have been advised. We also propose that the students who receive lower grades in the remark should get to keep their highest score.
The grade for this essay will have a significant impact on the rest of our lives, and we should not be disadvantaged due to unfair grading and unclear questions.
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