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The Campanile

Column: how to get teachers to round up your grade


Time moves fast. One second, you’re scrambling to get acquainted with a new set of classes and teachers, stammering as you recite a not-so-fun fact about yourself to a new set of peers, and then BAM, out of nowhere, the term is almost over. The end of the semester always seems to roll around faster than expected, and sometimes your grades simply aren’t as immaculate as you had envisioned. All the tests that you forgot to study for and all the assignments you “left at home” have begun to add up, and the nauseating feeling you get whenever you check Infinite Campus is a fraction of the dread you’ll experience when your parents receive the lackluster report card that’s bound to follow. Despite your best efforts and sudden interest in community service (karma, where you at?), Rogerhub maintains that it’s going to require a miracle (aka a 113 percent on the AP Bio final) in order to obtain that coveted A. Fear not, for I have compiled a list of foolproof tricks to help you scrounge those last few percentage points (and don’t forget, if all else fails, you can always bribe the Stanford sailing coach).



[divider]Emotional blackmail[/divider]


An oldie but goodie, guilt-tripping your teacher is guaranteed to get results. Though some may prefer a more subtle approach, I say go big or go home. Bawl your eyes out, let snot drip from your nose and scream in anguish. Embrace your inner child and relive your glory days as a tantrum throwing three-year-old. Amid the uncontrollable sniffing and hiccups, don’t forget to choke out a few remarks about how this semester has been “oh so hard,” and how getting a B+ in APUSH will ruin your chances of getting into college. Though morally questionable, there’s no doubt that emotional blackmail is effective.



[divider]Actual blackmail[/divider]


This one’s definitely morally reprehensible, but who cares if it means you get the grade you want. Threaten your teacher with a bad review on the end of the semester survey and they’re bound to cave to your demands. *This strategy is more effective on teachers without tenure.



[divider]Bribe away[/divider]

As the latest college admission scandal shows, money works. Give your teacher their end of the semester gift a little bit early, and make sure it’s extra nice. Slip your coffee-addicted science teacher a $100 gift card to Peets, or your Broadway-obsessed history teacher tickets to the next Hamilton show. Hell, if you’re really dedicated, you might as well just hand them a blank check and ask for a letter of rec. while you’re at it. It might make a dent in your bank account, but it’s better than letting your GPA take the hit. Plus, you’ll earn the money back once your spotless grades earn you admission into one of the schools on the top ten paid grads list.





Need a 3 percent grade boost? Ask for a 13 percent raise instead! Then, using your renowned debate skills to negotiate a compromise for the 3 percent increase that you needed to begin with. Not only will you get the grade that you needed, but you’ll also get to feel like the bigger person for offering a compromise.



[divider]Reverse psychology[/divider]


Send your teacher an email asking them to round your grade down a few percent. Explain that being so close to an A is too upsetting, and that your parents would be more understanding if you were to end with a solid B, as they would understand that it was impossible to raise it an entire letter grade. Confused? Good! If you’re lucky, it might just confuse your teacher enough to give you an A.


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