There should be no mystery in your course grade, especially when so many things rely upon how well you perform in one class. You can calculate your semester grade for a course, with no need for guesswork. Professors should disclose how they plan to determine your final semester grade for a course, either in orientation or during the syllabus. Use the percentage values the professor assigns to each area (i.e., tests, quizzes and class participation) to plug into an easy formula to help you keep track of how well you are doing.
Review your syllabus. Find the section of your syllabus where your professor or teacher has disclosed the percentage breakdowns to determine your final grade. Note how areas like tests, homework, quizzes, attendance and class participation factor into your final grade, percentage wise.
Determine your average in each of the areas your professor has designated as part of your final semester grade. These may include test grades, quiz grades, homework assignments, a midterm, a final exam and class participation. Add up all of the grades and divide them by the number of areas to find the average. Be aware that your class participation grade may be at the discretion of the professor at the very end of the semester and therefore not quantifiable.
Multiply each average or grade by its percentage value, according to how your professor has determined it is weighted. For example, if the final exam is worth 50 percent of your semester grade, and you received a score of 100 percent on the final exam, multiply your grade of 100 percent by 0.50 to get 50 percent, the full value of its weight. Repeat for each of the averages you calculated using the above mentioned steps. Add each of the final percentages to arrive at a reliable estimation of what your final semester grade will be.
About the Author
Melissa Cole began writing as a local newspaper reporter in 2008. Her work also appears on various websites. Cole is a public-television producer and media professional, as well as a vegan and former varsity track-and-field MVP and team captain. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and politics from New York University.