Average Grades

by O. J. Ferguson

We have never before quite been able to answer the question as to what is meant by an average grade for a Nebraska engineer. Even now, we must limit the figure to the group effective enough in their work to graduate, for our figures pertain to those only.

The Registrar's Office has laboriously compiled the weighted averages for us, for all engineers graduating from 1922 to 1930, inclusive. Before presenting any results, let me call attention to certain facts.

(1). No student may use for graduation more hours credit in the sixties than 20% of the work used for graduation. For students entering with advanced standing, this means 20% of the work done here.
Put in the reverse sense, at least 80% of his work must lie above the sixties.

(2). All students who withdrew have been automatically excluded from this list, for we made our calculations on the basis of the graduates, only.
Hence, the lists are approximately one quarter as long as the lists of entrants would have been.

(3). The lowest possible average which a man could have and still graduate would be

            (100) (70)-(25) (60)
覧覧覧覧覧覧覧 =68.00
(4). Not all calculations are made upon the basis of 125 hours credit, for some students had extra credits, while others came to us with advanced credits. Credits earned here only were used.

(5). "Failures" and "Delinquents" remaining on the books were averaged in at 45%.

"Conditions" and "Incompletes" were graded 55%.

It is obvious that such marks could have been only in non-required subjects, or the student could not have graduated.

TABLE I猷uartile limits.
Year     First  Second  Third Fourth
1922 .......  90.22-85.10  84.58-80.91  80.37-77.19  76.96-71.01
1923 .......  89.72-83.14  82.32-79.25  79.08-76.24  75.86-69.69
1924 .......  91.67-82.72  82.68-78.91  78.84-76.73  76.35-71.31
1925 .......  88.69-82.58  82.44-78.91  78.83-76.30  76.21-70.09
1926 .......  93.71-81.52  81.09-78.58  78.19-75.73  75.68-70.79
1927 .......  90.10-82.51  82.23-78.05  77.93-75-56 75.32-69.06
1928 .......  91.83-81.86 81.82-79.34 79.25-76.21 76.21-71.10
1929 .......  88.30-82.55  82.04-78.03  77.93-75.81  75.49-69.77
1930 .......  94.43-82.75  82.58-78.73  78.46-76.04  75.92-70.29

Our range of individual averages for the nine-year period specified includes as extremes, 69.06 and 94.43.

This obtains for a body of 631 men.

The average of the 631 averages is 79.43.

By years, the classes divide into quartiles with grades as shown in the table.

It will he seen that division lines between quartiles swing back and forth a little with successive classes.

In order to feel assured of placement in the first quartile one ordinarily would need to attain an average figure somewhere in the range from 82 to 84. In 1922 this would not have been sufficient. The middle line of the classes wavers from about 78 to 80. The lowest quartile is cut off at about 76.

A second table shows for each class the averages for all men in that class, and the numbers of men graduating.

TABLE II幼lass averages.
Year  No. of Grads.  Average.Grade
1922 51  81.13
1923 69  79.47
1924 66  79.83
1925 76  79.10
1926 62  78.98
1927 70  79.01
1928 89  79.23
1929 68  79.01
1930 80  79.57

Here, we see the gross averages vary by only 2.15  points.  1922 seems to have been a particularly good year. It had the smallest class, and its average would lie most affected by individual excellencies (or deficiencies). Another fact of interest is that of the 631 men, ten persons had averages above 90.00.  Only four persons were below 70.00. All of these do not appear in the table shown.

The highest value was 94.43 for 134 hours of credit.

This figure appearing in the 1930 line of Table I, conceals two other excellent records, viz., 93.16 and 91.30.

There were several instances where the calculation of averages to four significant figures gave ties, and the fifth or even sixth place had to be filled before the rank was established. In no such case did the quartile grouping depend upon the determination.

With these general figures before them, Students easily may rank themselves with reference to our graduates of the past nine years. It will lie of interest and value for them to make the calculation. Then, they might wish to send the report home.