More To Grading Than A Letter Grade


This is the photo of my daughter Sophia. She is a little over three years of age, likes to play with Elmo, and loves gymnastics. She is also a good learner in school and gets along with everybody. Sophia is a typical toddler growing up in a middle class household in the United States. By the age of three, she has had a number of Pads, is constantly watching Elsa on my iPhone, but her learning development activities have been primarily behaviorist without the use of too much technology. She is growing, playing, and learning. She is TechnoModerating.

One day, Sophia will be going to high school but I suspect that the means by which Sophia’s professors will grade her efforts will be mechanized and therefore likely to be too rigid and unforgiving — Much like the computer. She will attend college in a pretty automated society struggling for hope. I suspect that Sophia will grow up in a rough world where competition for survival due to lack of opportunity attributed to the eminent technological takeover will reign. 

All right, maybe the world won’t be that bad if we find a way to moderate our technological advancements and maintain some of our human systems and procedures. 

Will school be different? Both you and I know it will be very different. The heart of a caring professor today — the one which students celebrate and listen to because of their empathy, will be replaced by cold machines “who” will spit numbers back at them despite the challenges they face in their underdeveloped prefrontal lobe years.

Who cares if you had a death in your family, says the computer. I don’t care if you got a D grade on quiz 6 and failed to come to class on time four times because you had to take your youngest sibling to daycare because your family struggles to make ends meet because of the technological takeover. Sorry, you get an F for the course, goodbye. 

The future Sophia is going to live and experience won’t be the world you and I grew up with. That’s is for sure. My hope for a sustainable world especially in education lies in our ability to find a balance between the computerized and physical worlds. Without moderation, I think we will see way too many kids struggling in school despite the great technology that will be available to them.

So, where do we go from here? Long term, I don’t know. Short-term? TechnoModeration. Why? Because it might be the only thing we will have going on for us. Remember, we are humans and we are more than a letter grade. 


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