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Should I fight for marks??


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I don’t like to downtalk TA’s but I honestly feel like the majority don’t want us to do well or simply don’t care. In organic chemistry I got a 97 on the midterm; but for my prelab quizzes I got 60 on one; and 40 on the other. She has no explanation just simple 0’s out of 3 and  I’m confused about this because I did know what I was talking about: I didn’t go into the lab upreprared. I studied and everything so I don’t even know why it’s wrong; like some of my answers are word for word out of the lab manual. I have this problem where I’m too scared to fight for marks; so should I just get over it and fight for marks? Or do other premeds not generally do this. I just am tired of things like labs bringing down my overall mark which is exactly what happened last year. I email my TA’s and ask for help and go to their office and everything; and they always take forever to respond or seem annoyed with the questions, it’s discouraging.

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Speak to the TA and ask why you're losing marks. If they refuse to answer or you believe their marking is unfair, go speak to the prof.  I understand where you're coming from in your frustration, but TAs (at my institution at least) don't take marks off, let alone give you a flat 0 on a question for no good reason.  Also don't take their late answers to your email personally, they're busy people !

Good luck !

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they usually have an obligation to entertain demands for revisiting/explaining marks for a quiz/lab report, etc. Meaning that they can't choose to avoid you. If you approach them in a level-headed manner and discuss the correction (ex.: ask them why did u get a mistake. If you feel like its still unjustified, show them how u came to the answer, ex. by using a textbook, because sometimes they may not be aware of the different possible answers), there will be no problem.

And yes, people do contest marks, there is no shame/problem with doing so. Worst case your points don't change, and you learn your mistake. Best case you get some marks.

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I fought for several of my grades all throughout university. What’s important to remember, however, is to be polite, calm, and respectful at all times. Also, make sure that you are approaching your TA with justified reasoning for why you believe you deserve a higher grade. Asking them for a higher grade because you worked hard won’t get you the marks. Explaining your situation, outlining specifically why you should receive a higher grade, and backing up your request with concrete proof from, for example, your lab manual, should earn you some points. If the TA is unreasonable and still refuses to change your mark, approach your prof and see if they can help rectify the situation. 

I hope everything works out for you! 

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I inquired about every single final exam I ever took, and make sure I understood why I lost every single mark I obtained. Part of that is of course to make sure nothing was missed but also just because I really wanted to know what I didn't know so I didn't make that mistake again. This was allowed by my school so I used that rule repeatedly - I was polite, but I was firm as well. 

Don't feel bad about trying to understand what people think you are doing wrong - education only works when you get that feedback, and the entire point of a degree is to educate yourself. People - TAs and professors included - make mistakes, and I have seen some pretty bad ones on my tests in the past. 

Edited by rmorelan
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