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Grade Inflation: What Seems To Be A Dream Is In Reality A Nightmare

1220 words - 5 pages

Every year, Canadian students in their senior high school year eagerly anticipate for their acceptance letters to the university of their dreams. Competition of high grades has become increasingly popular, as post-secondary institutions demand minimum grade requirements for entry. In the recent past, this competition has led to a phenomenon called grade inflation, which is the result of awarding a higher grade than what the student deserves (Dictionary.com, 2014). As a result, students receive a huge surprise in university, as their grade drop significantly compared to their high school grades. Grade inflation stems from many sources, such as influences of parents, teachers, students and even from competition between schools. Regardless of the reason, grade inflation has a huge impact on current and future students, as grades for the most part act as a golden ticket into their desired institutions. If the issue of grade inflation persists, students and post-secondary institutions both would be trapped in a vicious cycle; high schools continue to inflate the students' grades while universities and colleges continue to raise their admission grades accordingly. To solve this problem, secondary schools should restrict the number of As that can be given and post-secondary institutions should add entrance exams to their admission process. It is necessary for both levels of education to work together to tackle this issue, and to "deflate" the grades to what the student deserves.
The effects of grade inflation can be clearly seen by statistics collected every year. According to professor James Côté at Western University, Ontario high school graduates with an A average increased from 40 to 60 percent from 1980 to 2007 (Schwartz, 2013). Although high grades permit students to get in universities they want to go to, these marks are an inaccurate reflection of the student's true capabilities. Often, students would be at a disadvantage in their higher level education as they are hit with the cold truth that they cannot obtain the same marks as high school. According to a report conducted in 2010 by Brock University, students who entered with a high school average of 90 percent or more experienced a decrease of 11.9 percent in their first year of university (Schwartz, 2013). Consequently, students' self-esteems are lowered and many even drop out due to course failures. Grade inflation also blinds students from actually seeing the problem and the negative consequences their inflated marks will yield in the long run. No one wants to discover that they are not an A student, yet the unfortunate reality is that not everyone is suited for university programs with high admission standards. This truth is covered when all the students have an inflated grade. Many find out that they are unsuited for these intense university programs years later, after their debt has accumulated significantly due to tuition and living expenses in university. Meanwhile as everyone...

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