[KACT] Re: spelling

  • From: "David R. Stinemetze" <dstine@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 07 Sep 2006 07:25:48 -0500

Kelly Deters wrote:

I'm not the world's best speller, and I occasionally make mistakes (especially when writing quickly)...but has anyone else noticed the dramatic downfall in our students' ability to spell words correctly? I had one girl bring a lab procedure up to me the other day with "wathe" instead of "water"...can they really not spell "water"? I had the following as an answer to a test question about why it's important to do multiple trials in a lab: "So to make sher that nether whent rong or that one trial might be of" It makes me feel like I'm reading the Winnie the pooh book to my kids where Owl spells things like that. And these are the honors kids! (And it wasn't a one time occurance...there were many such answers!)
I've never taken points off for this kind of things as I was grading "chemistry" not spelling or grammar...but this is getting bad! What do you guys do?
kellymdeters@xxxxxxxxx <mailto:kellymdeters@xxxxxxxxx>

I always circle misspellings, but let the first one or two pass without penalty. After that, I take off just enough to be annoying, maybe a half point out of 10. That can add up in situations like you describe, but normally it just serves to prod the student into being more careful. My approach is similar for all of the mechanics of composition.

David Stinemetze

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