The Rice Thresher (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 47, No. 22, Ed. 1 Friday, March 18, 1960 Page: 3 of 8
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■THRESHING IT OUT-
Change in Math 200
To The Editor:
For forty-eight years, the Rice
Institute has been offering to
sophomore students a course that
has resembled, more or less, what
we now know as Math 200, and
for almost as many years, Rice
engineering graduates have been
regarded as mathematically well
prepared for Their fields. But One
professor has decided that the
standards are not high enough.
HE REQUIRES a grade of
<60% or better to pass any exam,
despite the class mean. In other
words, he has abolished the so-
. called "curve," which long ago
became a necessary tradition with
tests keyed beyond average abi-
lity. In keeping with the Insti-
tute policy of "not inconvenienc-
ing" the student, he has given
exams on non-class student time,
and in the future he threatens to
require a "three" or better to
"FOURS" DO NOT indicate
enough ability to pass the course,
he says, and he will therefore
give "fives" in their stead. As
a result of all these actions, he
managed to "give" fifty-six per
cent of the Math 200 class
"fours" or "fives" last semester.
Final preparations are under-
way for the performances of "A
Midsummer Night's Dream" to be
presented Friday, Saturday, and
Sunday of next week. Several
cast changes have been made dur-
ing the past few weeks.
The cast includes: David Ro-
senberg, LaJuana Osborn, Pres-
ton Brashear, Lou Ann Haarman,
Ed Meader, Louis Bell, Mike
Blocher, DeLinda Frazier;
Also, Glenn Howard, Pat Jones,
Dee Owsley, Gordon Green, J<*hn
Arnold, Jonnie Myrick, Mary
Jabsen, Cristell Schaule, Carolyn
Skebo, Martin McClain, Joe Bin-
ford, Steve Rogers, Bill Delaney,
Robert Castroll, and Jim Cut
A video tape will be made
Wednesday, March 23, for pre-
sentation on The Rice Institute
TV Program for Sunday, March
27. The tape will consist of cut-
tings from the fifth act and is
not a full presentation.
SAACS MEETING Monday,
March 21,-F.L.L.L. at 7:00
p.m. The speaker will be Dr.
Norman Neureiter of Humble
Research Labs on the subject
of "Chemistry Education In
Dr. Neureiter spent last
summer in Moscow with his
family studying Russian scien-
tific progress and accomplish-
The "curve" is a pedantic de-
vice used to evaluate the ability
of students to respond to the
material offered in class and
tested on exams, and accordingly,
to reflect the teacher's classroom
ability. Tests under the "curve"
system are designed, therefore, to
be requiring of the brightest stu-
dents, in order to reveal relative
WHEN THE "CURVE" is
eliminated, and the nature of the
test is left unaltered, the pur-
pose of the test itself is defeated.
Failing grades are obtained and
time is wasted.
If a test is too difficult for an
average number of students to
make good grades, and even too
difficult for the majority of the
class to pass, either the students
are incapable, the test is beyond
the material covered, or the
teacher has failed in his respon-
sibility to the students.
IF THE STUDENTS are in-
capable, they should either be re-
moved or the material geared to
their capabilities. If the problem
lies with either of the other two
possibilities, there is no possible
justification ..except a pedantic
logic which equates the difficult
with the worthwhile and the re-
putation-building. It may be of-
fered as an explanation that the
students aren't working, when
56% make unacceptable grades;
but try convincing anyone that
suddenly, in one year, over 50%
of the all the students quit work-
ing in only their math class,
while maintaining all their other
IN CONCLUSION, it appears
that the professor is either un-
aware of the ability of his stu-
dents or unconcerned about their
progress. It is impossible to
understand his strange pride
which associates teaching ability
with a high flunk-out rate.
—Name withheld upon request
TISA . . .
(Continued from Page 1)
Most other schools in the area
experience more censorship where
their publications are concerned
than does Rice. At one school re-
presented every single article to
be printed in the newspaper must
be read by the president. Also,
generally speaking, the editor is
a position filled by appointment
by the publi<^tion boards of other
Featured as speakers at the
TISA state convention were Wag-
goner Carr, Speaker of the House
of the State Legislature, Senator
Phillip A. Hart of the State Sen-
ate, and David Cohn, one of the
South's foremost writers.
The Rice delegates returned
Sunday evening with a wealth of
information regarding other peo-
ples problems to add to their own.
The consensus was that it is
pretty consoling to know that
Rice isn't the only school with
Bank or the Sqajthwest buildino
Houston cA 4-690S
Final Phase of Academic Year
Gosnell Leads Battalion
A reorganization of the NRO-
TC midshipman battalion took
place last week when the first
class midshipmen were assigned
new offices, initiating the third
and final phase of the present
Christofel Named Exec
Hal Gosnell will lead the bat-
talion as commanding officer. His
operational staff will be: Joe
Christofel, executive officer; Roy
frolen, operations officer; John
Pankratz, adjutant; Joe Hawes,
supply officer; Mike Kahn, legal
officer; Carl Scott, public infor-
mation officer; Mike Lockerd,
commander of the color guard.
To command Tuesday's "Alfa"
company will be Bob Hudspeth.
His executive officer and two
platoon commanders will be Tom
McKeown, Clay Wellborn, and
David Wooten, respectively.
In charge of the two planning
staffs will be chief-of-staff Mike
Bennett. John Filson will assist
in administration as planning
staff administration officer.
Sonny Cofer will.be officer-in-
charge of "Alfa" planning staff.
He will be assisted by Danny Bar-
num, the assistant O-in-C. Mem-
bers of "Alfa" planning staff will
be: Charles Sale, Jerry Paine,
Charles Hull, Hugh R4eder, and
Adrian May assumes the posi-
tion of officer-in-charge of "Bra-
vo" planning staff, to be assist-
ed by Don Sharp. Members of
"Bravo" planning staff will be:
George Clark, Jim Anderson, Ger-
ry Preston, Gary Shaner, Chris
Knudsen, and Ronald Nichols.
Results of Company Competition
"Alfa" company, commanded
by Sonny Cofer, led -"Bravo"
company in total points at the
second phase company competi-
tion held on March 8. The com-
panies were judged on drill per-
formance and general appear-
ance by Sgt. Van Horn and Sgt,
Wyatt of the Army ROTC Cadre
and by Sgt. Pearson of the
NROTC staff. Members of the
operations and planning staffs
judged the platoon and squad
RICE CAMPUS STORE
The Sale of the Official
For Use in the Memorial Chapel
Now Available in The
CAMPUS BOOK STORE
** * r
« -x .«<
❖ <x * : -x v.
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The Rice Thresher (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 47, No. 22, Ed. 1 Friday, March 18, 1960, newspaper, March 18, 1960; Houston, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth231143/m1/3/: accessed April 25, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Rice University Woodson Research Center.