ARG-172

Fifteen years ago, Omega University implemented a new procedure that encouraged students to evaluate the teaching effectiveness of all their professors. Since that time, Omega professors have begun to assign higher grades in their classes, and overall student grade averages at Omega have risen by 30 percent. Potential employers, looking at this dramatic rise in grades, believe that grades at Omega are inflated and do not accurately reflect student achievement; as a result, Omega graduates have not been as successful at getting jobs as have graduates from nearby Alpha University. To enable its graduates to secure better jobs, Omega University should terminate student evaluation of professors.


Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument.


The author attributes the poor job placement rate of Omega University graduates to inflated grades because of the teaching evaluation process. A solution offered by the author is to terminate the evaluation of professors. His argument does seem logical but it has certain loopholes which cast doubts on its validity. More evidence is needed to evaluate whether the proposal would allow Omega graduates to secure better jobs.

To start with, the argument assumes that the soaring grade for students in Omega University is triggered by the implement of evaluation process. However, the author ignores that the inflation of grade might be due to other various causes. For example, the improvement for students’ grades could be the result of their hard-working and diligence. It is plausible that students became more assiduous after the process was implemented, and hence succeeded in improving their grades. Moreover, the rising grades might be the result of school-held seminars, which largely promote the learning skills for students and result in obtaining better grades. In sum, we need more evidence regarding all concurrent changes at Omega University to understand the true cause of the rise in grades.

To lead on, even if it is confirmed that the inflation of grades is caused by the implementation of evaluation process, more evidence is still needed to establish the connection between soaring grades and low securement of jobs. According to the author, potential employers, believing that the grades do not accurately reflect students’ achievement, decided not to offer them job opportunities. However, such potential employers might not want to accept students from Omega University in the first place, and they might be using the soaring grades as excuses. For instance, Omega University alumni may perform badly at work and lead to a bad reputation of Omega University. In this case, whether the grades for students in Omega University increase or not does not really matter.

In addition, it is also crucial to compare with Alpha Universities and find out the differences between both universities. Alpha University’s high rate of employment might be the result of a better well-structured curriculum closely associated with the recent job market trends, infused with technological support and more senior professors for better teaching. Hence the reason for Alpha University’s higher rate of employment might not be the absence of inflated grades. More information about Alpha University’s teaching quality is certainly needed to reveal why Omega graduates aren’t as successful as Alpha graduates in finding jobs.

Finally, if all the assumptions mentioned above are met, terminating the evaluation process still may not lead to the increase in securement of jobs. Considering the factors which companies concerned about students when offering jobs, it is possible that employers set their focus not only on students’ grades, but also on other factors, such as team-working skills or leadership. Students in Omega University might have failed to secure jobs due to dearth of certain specific skill-sets. Thus, schools should set the concentration on other ways that help students get better jobs, such as mock interviews, alumni counselling and career development curriculums. What’s more, it would be unwise to terminate the evaluation process considering its potential benefits. Such process could greatly motivate professors to improve their teaching skills and make sure they pay enough attentions to students, which finally lead to students’ academic excellence, which made them more competitive when looking for jobs. Hence, terminating the evaluation process does not necessarily will ends up with high job securement.

Hence, the author’s argument does not seem strong enough to support the decision of abolishing the evaluation process because the reasons given by the dean are questionable.

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