I don’t know anything about Thermodynamics.
It’s true. I got an A- in Thermodynamics, but I don’t know anything about Thermodynamics.
In that class, I had a very personal experience with Alfie Kohn’s assertion:
“Grades create a preference for the easiest possible task”
When I took Thermo, 5% of the course grade was homework. After two weeks of class, I found that I was spending 3-5 hours to do each homework, and they were due 3 times a week. I was getting bogged down in those assignments and I made a choice. I decided that I wasn’t going to do homework for that class. It turned out that I was missing something that would’ve made the homework a lot easier, but I had a preference for the easiest possible task. And I chose to take a 5 point hit on my final grade to spend my time better elsewhere.
I was doing very poorly in the class, but I can test like a pro. I crammed so hard for the final and actually got a 99. The professor curved the class like crazy and now I don’t know anything about Thermo but my undergrad GPA is okay.
And I was so proud of this at the time. Nowadays, I value homework so highly. It is the place where you have to try to wrestle with the material from class and actually learn things. Homework is where you put into practice all of the crazy things your professor talks about during the lecture.
I missed out on learning something because I was thinking about grades. Have you ever done that?