C/CS/Phys191: Information and policies regarding homework and grading

[Back to course webpage]

Below is some information from Jan about how homeworks are graded, as well as some tips for what we would like a good answer to a problem set to look like.

Important things to remember about homework submissions


Since there is only one GSI and no reader for this course, grading capacity is somewhat limited. As a result, not all problems in each homework set will be graded. Instead, one or a few problems from each homework will be selected for grading. The selection of which problem(s) will be graded will be done partly randomly but also partly by looking at what kind of responses people have written to the different questions, so that we avoid picking problems that would give a very skewed impression of people's overall performance.

Even though only one or a few problems are officially graded, we still expect you to do all the problems in each problem set, and in addition to the detailed scoring of the selected problem(s), we may also let your total score be affected by whether or not you have completed all the other problems as well. In the (hopefully rare) case that you have done very poorly on the selected problems or not done them at all, we may also decide to base most of your score on your performance on one or more of the other problems in the problem set. In this way, the precise selection of which problems are graded will hopefully not affect your total score much over the whole semester.

Your score on a homework will usually be written in red ink next to the first of the problems that were officially graded. It will be given in the form x/y, where x is your score and y is the maximum total score for the whole homework.

Feedback about homework

If I have short comments to your personal performance on specific problems in a homework, I will generally write them in red ink on the answer sheets that you have submitted. For longer comments that pertain to a large part of the class, I will some weeks write a "Feedback" document which will be posted in the homework section of the course web page after I have finished grading (due to time constraints, this document may be posted a few days after I have returned your homeworks, so keep checking back). If I have indicated shortcomings in your homework but not written any specific comments, then please check this document, the comments may be there. Even if there were no particular problems with your answers, the feedback document may contain useful tips and information of general interest, so please make sure to at least skim through it whenever you see one posted on the webpage, even if you received a perfect or near-perfect score on the homework.

Sometimes I may write in your homework that I want you to come and talk to me about a specific issue. This usually means that I couldn't quite figure out where you went wrong or that the comments are too long to be written on your homework and too personal to be suitable for the general feedback document. If I ask you to do this, then please come and see me in office hours, in section or after lectures within a week. Unless I specifically say otherwise, please do not try to do the discussion over e-mail, except to set up a meeting time. If the comments were too long or the issue too complicated to write on your homework, then it is probably not very well suited for e-mail either.

Updated Sep 21, 2005 by Jan Ivar Korsbakken