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I am very mad about my grade and I prepared this letter. could you pls give me a piece of advice about how to write and complain about the grade? I really do not know what to write. I really want to tell him that this grade is not fair.

PS: I should say that this prof is my supervisor as well.

HERE IS MY LETTER

I am writing this email regarding ++++ grades. I am not happy with my grad. I hope you do not mind but I'd like to ask some questions. I should say that I am really surprised by the final exam grade. The questions were very easy for me since they were very similar to what we learned in the lectures and you had already covered all of them through the lecture, I thought I could get 100 in the final exam.

In the written report, I got 86.00 I am really curious about this grade. I want to know why I really performed badly. Did I miss anything in the report?

I am available days and nights to discuss these three parts.

marked as duplicate by Daniel R. Collins, J-Kun, scaaahu, xLeitix, Mad Jack Sep 10 '18 at 11:44

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    May be your supervisor will read your post here. Just saying :) – Pioneer83 Sep 10 '18 at 5:58
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    Most of your issue seems to be about not getting 100% - this is probably due to your expectations not matching your supervisor/professor. You should be careful as if your spelling / grammar / phrasing is as good as this in your report then that may explain some or many of the points lost. – Solar Mike Sep 10 '18 at 6:08
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    If this is your supervisor, I assume you meet with them regularly. Don't send a mail at all, just ask them about your grade before or after one of your meetings. If you feel you need to send an email, I strongly suggest following cag51's advice. – xLeitix Sep 10 '18 at 7:58
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    I must admit, were I to receive this email, I would consider your tone quite out-of-line. You've been given a high grade - it sounds like this is the culmination of a large piece of work and the final result is > 90. Whilst you may have been after 100%, this very rarely happens in the real world. There will always be something upon which you can improve. The academic system also commonly revises grade distributions to equalise between more and less difficult modules. As others have said, ask your supervisor politely if you want to query your grades, but don't send this email. – n00dle Sep 10 '18 at 9:55
  • "I am very mad about my grade and I prepared this letter. could you pls give me a piece of advice about how to write and complain about the grade?" Don't. At all. – Lightness Races in Orbit Sep 10 '18 at 10:21
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I would strongly suggest not sending this mail. I'll give some specific feedback below, but in general, it is very distasteful when students complain about their grades when they don't even know why they lost points. I understand that you are angry, but especially since this professor is your supervisor, I think asking politely to learn what you missed and to raise any concerns is likely to end better than going in angry and demanding points.

I think the best course of action would be to ask for an appointment to discuss your grade. At this meeting, you can ask to review these three items with him/her, at which point you can listen while they explain why you got the grades you got. At this point you can politely ask for clarification or politely request they reconsider certain subjective marks.

To the points you raise:

firstly, I should say that I am really surprised by the final exam grade(93.00). The questions were very easy for me since they were very similar to what we learned in the lectures and you had already covered all of them through the lecture, I thought I could get 100 in the final exam.

This is probably your weakest argument -- "I thought I would do better" is not actionable. Instead, I think you should ask where you came up short, and then follow-up from there if you think the answer is unfair.

secondly, I think the oral presentation was way better than other students oral presentation. Most of the presentation given by students were not well organized and even they did not even care about timing and the rubric. I got just 89 and the second mark is 88. I think there were lots of difference between our present and the guys who got 88.

It's not clear how you know that you got the top score and the second mark was one point below you. Even assuming this is true, how other students were graded is not your concern. If there are scores on the rubric that you object to, then it is fair to raise those points. But again, I would try to be very polite and ask for an explanation rather than trying to argue that you deserve more points. After you understand the perceived weaknesses, you will be in a better position to respond to their concerns and even ask that they reconsider one or two of those marks.

By the way, I hope this presentation was recent -- it seems very opportunistic when students have no complaints until the end of the term, and then all of a sudden old grades become unfair.

Finally, in the written report, I got 86.00 I am really curious about this grade. I want to know why I really performed badly. Did I miss anything in the report?

I'm not sure in what course an 86.00 is "really performing badly." But I wouldn't ask "if you missed anything" -- obviously you missed 14% of the report, in the instructor's view! I would simply ask to be allowed to review/discuss your professor's comments, and then you can follow up if you think any of the complaints are not valid.

So, I would write this instead.

Dear Professor, I was a little disappointed by my final grade. I'd like to go over the final exam and written report with you to see what I missed. I am free anytime this week, please let me know what time you are available. --Name.

  • For part 2 I should say that after my presentation he send me an email and he told me that your presentation was very good and you did a great job. Now these marks are really disappointing for me. – nikki Sep 10 '18 at 6:02
  • could you please tell me what do you mean in this part?"where you came up short, and then follow-up from there if you think the answer is unfair." – nikki Sep 10 '18 at 6:12
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    "to come up short" means to fail to perform to expectations. In other words, ask him to explain why he took points off. If you disagree with the reason he gives, you can (politely) explain why you disagree, and that may lead to a discussion. Good luck! – cag51 Sep 10 '18 at 6:22
  • I should write"Could you please tell me where I came up short?". is it correct? – nikki Sep 10 '18 at 7:02
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    My advice is to ask for a meeting. I added a paragraph at the end of my answer to make this clearer. But if you want to handle this by e-mail, yes, "I was surprised by my final exam score; could you please tell me where I came up short" should be fine. – cag51 Sep 10 '18 at 7:08

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