Rest of World Links

Links on Grade Inflation in the rest of the world

A list of web-based reports and commentaries on Grade Inflation with URL addresses, brief descriptions and selected excerpts.

Click on the title to be taken to the webpage.

NOTE: Some links may be to subscription only sites – if you or your institution do not subscribe to the source you may be unable to access the document.

Grade Inflation in Germany – Click Here

A commentary on grade inflation in German Universities based on an article published in Der Spiegel on December 19, 2002

“In an article entitled, “Wertlose Traumnoten,” literally “Worthless Dream Grades,” Der Spiegel magazine details the very generous grading policies currently practiced by German professors.”

“In 2001, for example, there was exactly one university psychology graduate out of 3,092 in all of Germany who scored in the lowest grading category of ausreichend (sufficient). ”

“Ninety-five percent of all university graduates in the fields of psychology, biology, physics, mathematics, languages and literature, philosophy and history scored a final degree grade of either “Good” or “Very Good.” In fact, the average grade in each of these fields lies between 1.3 and 1.6, which corresponds to the highest-grade category of “Very Good.”

“Only in a few fields of study — law (average grade 3.3) and economics and business administration (2.4) — do there seem to be any discriminating grading practices.”

Education faculty at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada – Click Here

A website developed by the Education faculty at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada as a means of disseminating the results of an investigation into the problem of grade inflation initiated in the University and making appropriate recommendations.

“But it appears that current grading practices do not evaluate students’ academic performance appropriately. It takes less work and effort to receive a high grade than it did in the past….”

“Despite denials, evasions, and adroit rationalizations, grade inflation is a visible problem. Simply, students are receiving higher grades because instructors are assigning them.”

“Inflated grades indicate watered down course content.”

“In the academic domain as a whole, it is a breach of academic responsibility to acquiesce to the degradation of standards by inflating grades and pandering to demands for a weak, watered down curriculum.”

Higher Education Review Process, Australia

In 2002, the Australian Government conducted a review of Australia’s higher education system. The Review began with the release of an overview paper entitled Higher Education at the Crossroads in April 2002, which set out some of the characteristics of the higher education sector, and the challenges it faces.

“Recent media allegations about ‘soft marking’ and assessment practices in Australian universities have cast doubt on whether effective assessment practices are embedded in Australian higher education institutions. Many submissions to the Senate Inquiry identified problems in assessment practices in universities. The majority report of the Senate Committee recommended that the AUQA “investigate the effectiveness and application of quality assurance regarding assessment procedures” (Senate Inquiry Report, Recommendation 14). Similarly, the Victorian Auditor-General (2002) recommended, “universities give consideration to further strengthening student assessment practices” (2002, p.9). At the undergraduate level, CEQ data indicate that satisfaction with assessment practices at university did not improve over the past decade, whereas broad satisfaction with other aspects of university life did increase in the latter half of the decade (GCCA, 2001a).”