Brian Marquis, a 51-year-old student at UMass-Amherst is suing the university for a grade he got in his Problems in Social Thought class, the Boston Globe reported. Marquis, a paralegal seeking his bachelor’s in legal studies and sociology, thought he should have received an A minus in the class, but received a C because the professor graded on a curve. His case was dismissed by the US District Court in Springfield, so he’s taking it to the federal level, saying the school violated his contractual and civil rights.
Being arrested for the color of your skin is a violation of civil rights. Not receiving a C in a course that your professor felt you deserved.
Marquis said based on his scores on tests and papers that he should have received an A minus, but his professor graded on a curve and gave him the grade that he thought reflected Marquis’s work. Marquis said he’s suing the university because the C could bring down his GPA and make him less attractive to law schools.
I can understand feeling as though a grade is unfair, and in this case maybe it was and maybe it wasn’t. Marquis, who enrolled in UMass-Amherst in spring 2006, said his GPA is about a B-plus. This C will bring it down, but not enough that it’s going to destroy him and his prospects for law school. If the professor says he’s not going to change it, it’s time to suck it up and put it out of your mind.
The reporter on this piece, Jonathan Saltzman, does a good job of summarizing how ridiculous lawsuits have gotten out of hand these past few years:
"In an era when the courts are asked to decide who owns a record-setting home run ball and who is to blame when a cup of hot coffee from a fast-food restaurant scalds a person, it seems perhaps only modestly surprising that a grade dispute leads to litigation."
I know it’s disappointing to not get the grade you felt you deserved, but grades and GPA aren’t everything and at that point it’s time to suck it up and move on.