Professor ruined my GPA!

The professor gave us a take home final exam. We had to answer some questions in a essay form. I wrote 9 pages and gave it to him the last day of class so i never got it back

Ask him what you got on the final. Did you do the extra credit?

Yes, i did the extra credit. I feel like emailing him but im not sure what to say. I dont want to come off as annoying.

First get the facts. Find out what you got on your final.
Did you do the extra credit? What did you get on that?

You mention all the time you spent, all the work you did.

You mention extra credit. You don’t mention getting the answers right on the tests.

You were failing at the midterm-- what did you do to increase your grade other than ask for extra credit? Did you attend office hours? Get a tutor? Put in extra time on the reading? Do any outside research?

Your grades are your responsibility, not his. You speak of what he did. You had a D at the midterm. How did HE ruin your grade??

What did you do?

Your professor didn’t “ruin your grade”, you failed the class. This wasn’t a case of malicious grading, you just didn’t get the marks.

I hate to say this, but I doubt very much that your professor ruined your GPA. Did you do everything in your power to succeed in the class? Attend office hours? Go to any extra help sessions (at my daughter’s school they call it SI, and she attends whether she needs to or not). Successful students often go the extra mile.

The professor didn’t say that you would get a B if you passed the final and did the extra credit.

He said that if you passed the final and turned in extra credit, you could raise your grade to a B. Translation: it is possible for you to raise your grade to a B, but you would’ve had to have done well on the final and turn in the extra credit (and potentially do well on that, too).

In general, professors have no desire to ruin your GPA or any particular investment in the grade that you get for a class. In fact, most professors want to see most of their students do well. You get the grade that you earn.

I told him i was going to withdraw from his class. He knew i was concerned about my grade. Yet, he told me withdrawing would not be necessary and he was against it.

And you passed, albeit with a low score.

You need to be more aware that effort counts for nothing in college (with a very, very few exceptional cases). It’s all about achievement. If you achieve at a high level, you get a good grade, no matter the level of effort expended; similarly, if you achieve at a low level, you get a low grade, regardless of effort expended.

As a college professor, if I had the power to instantly change one thing about K-12 education to better prepare students for college, it would be to somehow teach students early on that effort is important for but not determinative of academic success.

He can be against it all he wants, but you are the student and you need to decide whether or not it’s detrimental to stay in a class you aren’t doing well in. At least now you know for next time.

If you want good grades in history, you need to get the answers right.

Apparently you didn’t.

You know better than anyone what your circumstances are - if you believe yourself to be in a pretty dire situation academically and withdrawal seems to be the best option available, then you withdraw.

@bjkmom and @twogirls are absolutely correct: When you are failing a class, you have to go to office hours, work with tutors, find study groups and go over previous test information. Maybe the professor had too much faith in your ability. Professors DO NOT LIKE to fail their students!

Your 9 pages may not have directly answered the questions; or may have been a combination of terms and discussions that didn’t make sense. The quantity of pages does not mean a thing if you didn’t answer the questions correctly. Most people can ramble on about a subject and not make any sense.

The students who get A’s also work “hard” but they put in extra efforts. I have a dd who attends every tutoring session, office hour, and study group even though she’s an A student. She said she learned early that the A students attend office hours and study groups.

Use this as a learning experience. Next time, you’ll do better.

It sounds like you didn’t do well on the final. It doesn’t matter what’s possible for your grades if you didn’t perform as needed to reach that possibility.

As others have said, ask what you got on the final. If nothing else, at least you’d know that. If you’re taking any other classes that build on this one, I would go into the professor’s office hours next semester to go over your final and find out what you did right and what you need to improve on. And even if you’re not taking a later history class that builds on this one, you may want to do it anyway; the issues may be general issues that you need to improve on in other subjects, and in order to improve on those you need to know what’s going on.

It’s not the end of the world, but use this as a lesson and learn from it for future semesters.

^^ Thank you, @“aunt bea”. Precisely that.

The number of students who’ve told me “But I wrote X pages!” as if that’s actually a meaningful metric…

You need to find out how you earned your final grade by discussing it with your prof. Then, consider retaking the course in spring for a higher grade. Plan to take two summer courses at community college in summer 2016 if they would transfer into your school. Do that again ing summer 2017. Make sure to take five courses in spring 2016 and in all coming fall and spring semesters, however. You’re now at risk of not finishing your degree in four years.

I finally figured out why he gave me a horrible grade. I emailed him and he responded by saying that the reason i got a D was because i failed the final grade due to plagiarized work. (Which i did not do!)

If he failed you due to plagiarized work, there are two concerns at play:
1- there are larger, school-wide consequences to plagiarizing
2- if you do not understand how to properly cite information you’re using, or how to take good notes that don’t plagiarize unintentionally (by copying phrases that may be from a textbook or a website into your writing), your future college work will be impacted

Both of these concerns will require you to talk to the professor and understand the type of plagiarism he found in your work. However, I would reframe what’s happening- professors don’t give grades or ruin GPAs; they record the grade you earn. You did not think that you were plagiarizing, but it is possible because you are new in college. Could the two of you meet when school starts to discuss so that you can learn for the future? (because, again, you have much bigger problems further down than this 1 D if you are unintentionally plagairizing).

It’s ok. Plagarism is a horrible thing, but people do it. Other than the G.P.A, it happens. My science professor did not even post my grade yet