Calc Grade

So you just bombed your first midterm, and you want to cry in the corner. Instead of sulking, it might be a good idea to get your head straight and figure out a game plan to make a come back. The best way to do that is to figure out your current grade, and what grade you'll need to actually pass the class. Let's do some math! Hiyaah!

Chopping Down the Percent!

Each college class breaks assignments and exams into percentages, make sure you have your syllabus.

Let's assume this breakdown:
  • Homework - 10%
  • Midterm I - 20%
  • Midterm II - 30%
  • Final - 40%
More assumptions:
  • You get 9/10 on all your homework assignments.
  • Your Midterm Score was 50/100
  • You still have Midterm II & the Final to take
More Chopping

With the assumptions above, we can determine what scores we'll need for the Midterm and Final to find out if we can pass or get a good grade. To do this, think of each assignment or exam as a component. When you add them all up, it equals 100. A value of 100 is an A+, an 85 would be a B, a 75 would be a C and so forth. Here's how things look so far:

To make sense of the point system, convert all the percentages in your mind and think of them as points. For example, homework is 10 points, Midterm I is 20 points and so forth. Since we get 9/10 on our homework assignments, it's safe to assume we'll get 9 points from homework. Next, we got a 50/100 on the first midterm, which is 50% of 20 points. This translates into 10/20 points. Hopefully this makes sense so far. Here's where we stand:

  • Homework 9/10 points
  • Midterm 10/20 points
  • Total = 19/30, which implies the following:
    • If we were to ace Midterm II and the Final, which have 30 and 40 points respectively, the highest grade you can achieve is an 89, which translates into a B+
Understanding the Situation

Realistically, getting a perfect score on the next two exams would be impossible. However, you can estimate your success rate. Let us do an example.


  • You score 80/100 on Midterm II
    • Multiplying (80/100) by (30), you get 24 points out of 30
  • You score 90/100 on Final
    • Multiplying (90/100) by (40), you get 36 points out of 40
Adding up Your Final Grade

  • Homework 9/10
  • Midterm I 10/20
  • Midterm II 24/30
  • Final        36/40
  • Total = 9 + 10 + 24 + 36
    • Grade = 79 C+
At the rate of your success, the highest grade you'll get is a C+, OUCH!!! But don't fret, by doing this, you'll at least get an idea of what you really need to do to get back in the class. Hopefully it'll help you realize how important it was not to fail so hard on the first midterm.

My Recommendations

  • Obviously don't go into the exam unprepared, you will suffer the consequence.
  • Do any extra credit available
  • Ask the professor for ways to get your grade up if possible
  • Find out if the class is curve, this might give you a good chance to get back in the game

If this didn't make sense, just watch the video I made for you.