I finally managed to both read and grade every answer on the Biology 12 midterm exams, taking advantage of the holiday weekend to do so. A strategy that worked for me was committing to grading at least eleven exams per day for each day of the five-day weekend. This strategy was fun for the first two days, and got tiring by today, but now I am done and with a day to spare! I polished off the last few exams this morning and I was able to revisit the student finish time data that I had collected and add to it the student grade outcome data.

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I didn’t readily see a “line of best fit” option within Google Sheets, but I suspect there would be a slight positive correlation between grade outcome and elapsed time. Though correlation does not necessarily mean causation, in hanging on to a test longer a student has greater opportunity to both remember and write their ideas than if they throw in the towel early on. I also know from anecdotal observations that students who cling most tightly to tests at the end of class are the students who are more fastidious, and it’s possibly because they remember a lot more than their early-finishing counterparts. This data is now serves as numeric evidence in support of my claim, and I can use it to model Brunsell’s CER with my students.

The highlight of the exam grading in terms of my own personal amusement was when I found the below example in support of the importance of the process of cellular respiration. This student took me very seriously when I encouraged them to be “punny” in their answers to keep me from getting bored and falling asleep when I finally got around to reading them. A world in which a Canadian male rapper can’t publicly lament the loss of a late night call from a woman that he didn’t particularly care for anyway? That sounds too good to be true!