Graduating Somma Latte College Life

Hello everyone:

Today’s blog is about how not to get a higher grade. I had a student recently who asked me to curve her grade by a half letter grade, so she could graduate “somma latte.” After I figured out that she meant “summa cum laude,” we were in better shape. She still didn’t get her 1/2 grade level curve, but at least I understood what she was asking for. (I thought she was ordering at Starbucks, for a moment. That sounds like something they would serve, doesn’t it?)

Sadly, she waited until the last week of class to figure out the numbers. She said that, if she got an A in just one more class, she could have honors at graduation. I’m impressed that she was that close to the goal, but the time to figure something like that out is well before the last week of class.

When I turned her down for the curve, she asked for the opportunity to re-take the final exam. She felt she could do much better on it, if she had a second go at the test. Yes, that makes perfect sense. She would have already known what the questions were, and would have had the chance to look up the answers. She did not get that, either.

When it came down to the final numbers, she was still a good student. She could still graduate “cum laude.” There was only one problem. There was no honor graduation for graduate students at that school.

What is your take on this situation? Was she trying to snow me for a higher grade? What do you think she was up to here? I would love to get your input!


Dr. Sheri


Sheri Dean Parmelee has a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from Regent University. She writes books on practical tips for people who become unexpectedly unmarried and is working on her second novel in a series of contemporary romance/suspense novels. She teaches at three colleges, working with students from freshmen to graduate students. Her hobbies include running 8 miles a day and reading biographies and fiction.

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