Let me start by clarifying the purpose of giving extra credit.  Extra credit is my acknowledgement of your going beyond the bounds of the class to learn relevant material.  Extra credit may encourage you to do certain things, but it is not payment for them;  it's not a wage for burdensome labor.  If you really wouldn't have done the extra credit assignment otherwise, then chances are that you haven't learned much.  So while I may give different amounts of credit for different experiences, there is no presumption of proportionality.

Each extra credit point adds approximately 1/20 of a letter grade to your overall course average.  Thus receiving twenty such points would (approximately) raise your grade from a B (say) to an A, while seven would raise it from a C+ (say) to a B-.  [Note:  Due to some limitations in the egradebook, as of Spring 2005 the "old" extra credit points above are equal to fifty {sic}"new" extra credit points.]

A student cannot accumulate more than 15 [now 750] extra credit points during a semester.

Getting extra credit for an outside activity requires that you provide, within a week or so of the activity, some objective evidence that you did indeed participate in it.  Generally, this means a signed note from the organizer of the activity or the speaker stating that you were in attendance.  Sometimes this is impossible, e.g., if you request extra credit for renting and watching a movie relevant to the course.  In those cases, I ask that you write a 325-word essay describing what you saw and discussing its relevance to the subject of the course.

Not all activities bring extra credit, even if they seem relevant to you.  Check with me ahead of your participation.  (Or go ahead and participate, but don't assume it will necessarily bring you extra credit.)

Here are some possibilities for extra credit:


1. This applies only to texts and course materials where, in my judgment, the correction will make a timely difference to this or future courses or to future editions of the material. For example, finding a mistake in the syllabus would benefit this class. Finding a mistake in the text would aid the author in future editions. Errors in texts which are simply reprints of other work wouldn't bring any extra credit, because the reprint won't be changed.  Errors in my emails don't count, both because the correction won't make any difference — the email has already gone out, after all — and because I don't want to devote the same level of scrutiny to my emails that I do to my syllabi and other course materials.  If you are unsure which texts or other materials count, just ask me.

URL: http://www.d.umn.edu/~schilton/Courses/Extra.html
Author:  Stephen Chilton [email]  |  Last Modified:  2005-06-06
Honor Roll  |  UMD  |  Pol Sci Department

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