3.6 GPA and no dean's list first semester because of unfair class, is there anything I can do?

I just received my first semester grades, they are as follows
Sociology (Honors): A-
Human Physiology and health: A
Social psychology: A
First year transitions: A
Earth Science: B-
University Seminar (Honors): didn’t have a grade posted for some reason, it was just blank- professor may have extended final grade input because of an extenuating circumstance that came up a week before finals, but I have a 97.8 so assuming it would be an A as well
GPA: 3.61

Requirements for dean’s list: 3.6 GPA and above, no grade lower than a B

Although I studied for hours upon hours for this Earth Science class, I received a B-, and I’m not sure there’s more that could’ve been done. My professor cancelled class 5 times for “work” (isn’t being a professor his job???) and cancelled an hour and 15 minute class 45 minutes early 90% of the time. All of his powerpoints (which he directly read off of with no extra info) were stolen from another company, which I have direct evidence of. I’m not just saying that because of the grade I received, I almost sent an email about him to the department head multiple times but decided to keep my mouth shut until I received my final grade, which was probably a poor idea. I had multiple email exchanges with the professor stating that I was looking for ways to do better, to which he wasn’t overly responsive. Grades in the class were so bad that we had 3 extra credit opportunities (all of which I did) with an exam curve, as the raw exam score average on the most recent test was a 49, which the professor disclosed to me after going up to him to discuss my grade. “So, at least you’re doing better than average!” he said to me, with a failing test grade in my hand after studying an entire weekend…

I don’t think withdrawal is an option at this point. There is a grade appeal process at my university, but I have a feeling the professor will say tough, each exam is 25% equaling to 100% which is stated in the syllabus. The process is lengthy and includes sending first my professor a hand-written letter (which is also sent to the Dean), then having an exchange with him, and then finally the Dean after a few other steps.

Do I have any options here? I don’t mean to sound ungrateful for receiving a 3.6 but to work as hard as I did and receive that grade with the inability to be on the dean’s list is discouraging and an absolute slap in the face.

I’m not sure what the problem is. You meet both the criteria for the dean’s list, assuming your seminar grade is in line with the others.

You have a 3.61, which is above a 3.6, and you have no grade below a B-.

If the rules are “3.6 GPA and above, no grade lower than a B-” and you have a 3.61-- presumably higher once the seminar goes in-- with one B-, then it sounds to me as though you should be on the Dean’s List.

My guess is that it’s on hold until they get that missing grade. I would check.

@Sue22 My earth science grade is a B-, to be on the dean’s list you can have no grade lower than a B, I mistyped in the original post I’m sorry

@bjkmom I accidentally made a typo in the original post, you can’t have below a B, so that B- makes me ineligible.

Oh, OK.

To be honest, I think that at this point in time it’s going to look like sour grapes instead of a legitimate complaint.

Could you still make it next semester, or is that one B- a permanent issue?

You should have gone to see your prof in person to discuss questions about the class and how best to study for the exams. Emails on how to do better don’t seem like a very helpful thing. You needed to figure out what you weren’t grasping in the material, and that isn’t really an email conversation.

Don’t worry about Dean’s list – it is pretty irrelevant in the job school and grad school search, and a B- is not a bad college grade. This isn’t HS where you need to collect awards and ECs.

@intparent Unfortunately I did see him twice to discuss in person to discuss how to do well in the class, and he told me the same thing twice. I reviewed the tests as well as the study guides I created for myself, and there was very little I simply wasn’t grasping- the tests did not correlate to his slides as he received them from elsewhere. It’s slightly important to me because I may eventually decide upon medical school (if not, definitely grad school) and I’ve been told that being able to say you were on the dean’s list every semester is helpful.

@bjkmom I realize that, I wish I would’ve said something to the department head earlier, I had the email drafted and everything :confused: I’m not sure if it’s a permanent issue, but if it makes any difference I’m hoping to go to med school eventually and if not definitely grad school, as well as applying for a few leadership positions around campus where GPA is a deciding factor.

My guess is the school knows about the guy and can’t or won’t do anything. If you have a professor review put one up and warn others. Otherwise it’s probably best to just move on.

I’m guessing your class notes weren’t up to the task. I’m sure some students got As in the class. It does not matter at all where his slides came from (plus,you don’t know – he might consult with that company). Many profs lecture on materials not on their handouts and expect students to know it.

I think a lot of profs get tired of students showing up and asking how to get a better grade. What they want are students who genuinely want to understand the course material, and are interested in what they didn’t understand in the material so they can prepare better for the upcoming assignments. There is, honestly, little more annoying than a student who is just wanting a higher grade.

You aren’t anywhere near the hard parts of the premed classes – you have some grueling semesters ahead. You should probably start the chemistry sequence next semester to see if you are really a candidate for med school or not.

It is just one semester. No real harm will be done. Just concentrate on those things you can change like your grades in the future. 3.6 is still a respectable GPA.

My class notes are extensive and verbatim with the slide content. I used the slides and studied them and their exact content as well as all of the textbook material. He explicitly told me that the highest grade on the last exam was a 78, which is far from an A. If anyone did receive an A in this course, it was the result of a curve. It was so bad that before one of the last classes began, a junior girl stood up and asked if everyone else was failing too, so I guess I was one of the “lucky” ones. His professor reviews are scathing and most claim they received a C- or lower in the course (not just this year, in previous years as well).

You did extremely well in your first semester at college. Get over the Dean’s List thing – it is nice to make Dean’s List, but really isn’t a big deal in the scheme of life – and you have seven more semesters to make it.

In terms of the professor – you need to get over that as well. You had an opportunity early in the semester to drop the class and chose not to. You will have some amazing professors in college and a couple of duds. That is the way life goes. The sign of a mature student is the ability get over those bumps in the road and keep moving ahead in a positive manner.

Well, you have no recourse. I’m guessing Earth Sciences is full of students who need some kind of science course and shy away from the harder courses (which are full of premed students). To me it sounds like you are salty because it turned out to be a hard class (reminds me of a college classmate of mine who took Woody Plants and struggled mightily for a B – he did not expect it to be hard, but it was). Going forward, it sounds like you should read prof comments. And start your actual hard science pre-med classes. That will show soon enough if this was an outlier class/prof or not.

Oh – and notes verbatim with the slides misses the point. What else did he say? How can you put together the material you did learn to come to new conclusions or apply to new situations? Often that ability is the biggest difference between the A student and others in college. Regurgitation isn’t enough any more.

@intparent My human physiology class (it’s a bio class) was a hard science class, and I received an 95 on the 200 question final. My final average in that class was a 99 and my professor emailed me after the final to congratulate me on the work I did and to urge me to think about a future medical profession, so I don’t think it’s a matter of any of the work I did or my science capabilities. For the last Earth Science exam, I created a comprehensive 16 page study guide with supporting concept videos and activities that I found online. I spent my entire weekend doing just that. As I think I may have mentioned in the original post, he was unable to provide any additional information to the slides he was reading- he does not have any sort of degree in Earth science, and he’s not a full-time professor. He made it extremely clear that he did not care about the class, and I was one of the 16 (out of 36 in the class) that showed up to class every time. That just goes to show how poor of a class it was, and his reviews show this as well- it wasn’t an issue just this year.

Then you should have dropped the class. A high of 78 on a science exam in college is not unusual. That’s why most STEM classes are curved. Clearly you weren’t getting the highest grades/setting the curve. Move on.

@itsgettingreal17 You’re right I should’ve, but my the second week of September (about 3 weeks before our first exam) I had no idea how bad it would be. A 78 may not be unusual for some students but it’s extremely unusual for me. I got the highest grades in my biology class this semester so it doesn’t add up.

Come report back after you take the regular pre-med sequence. College isn’t high school. Human physiology and health doesn’t sound like the pre-med required bio 1 course. Looks like a kinesiology course, which is very different. And from your posting history, you struggled in AP bio, which may indicate that STEM is a weakness.

@itsgettingreal17 I know college isn’t high school. And yes, it’s not general bio 101 but at my school it’s a course on the “pre-med track”. STEM is not a weakness of mine, despite the fact that I struggled in the initial months of AP Biology.