In college I had three term papers due the same week. The first one was for a food research class and counted for 100% of my grade. The second was a psychology research paper and counted 25% of my grade. The last one was for microbiology and counted 20%.
I worked the whole semester researching and performing experiments on gelatin for paper # 1. I got my A, and my teacher submitted my work to a research group where it won an award. That felt good.
I gave the second paper some time, not near the work of the first, but my research was rewarded with another A—but no award.
The third paper, I threw together and got it to my teacher without a minute to spare. It was not my best work, and this was not my favorite teacher. She was a stickler for spelling, and I’m a poor speller. On one test she marked a whole list of bacteria wrong because I had put an “i” instead of an “e” in words 13 letters or longer. One letter wrong and zero credit for the 12 letters right—with her way of grading I was doomed. An A in two classes would not make up for failing a third. [click to continue…]