In the end, you will be given a letter grade for the course. At least a C- is required to pass. During the term, however, I will give you number grades for quizzes and in-class assignments. I will give you letter grades for the essays. Below is the correlation of letters and numbers.

A = 94 to 100
A- = 90
B+ = 87
B = 85
B- = 80
C+ = 77
C = 75
C- = 70
D+ = 67
D = 65
D- = 60
F = 59 and below

So if you receive a B- on your paper and look at your grades on courseweb, you'll see it listed as "80." If you receive a C+, you'll see it listed as a "77." Should you have major trouble on a paper and not pass, you will receive a number below 60. However, a 59 is way better than a 25. The worst number of all is 0. Typically, that only happens when a paper is not turned in, so don't let that happen.

A 70 average is required to pass the course. However, remember that different assignments are weighted differently. Papers--taken together--are worth 75% of your grade. Everything else is worth 25%. We will have a lot of grades in the "everything else" category, so don't panic if you make a low grade here and there.

For every class I teach, I have many, many grades. That takes the stress off of any individual assignment.