Grading Appeals, LOR, Advising

Timothy Tangherlini, Professor
The Scandinavian Section and
Dept. of Asian Languages and Cultures, UCLA
Box 951573, Los Angeles CA 90095
tango at humnet dot ucla dot edu

Main menu: Home | Grading | Letters of Recommendation--General | LOR--Undergraduates | LOR--Graduates | Independent Study | Advising (Ph.D. and M.A.) |

Grading and Appeals for Grade Changes

If you are reading this it is because you are considering appealing a grade you have received in one of my classes. Grading policies for my classes are spelled out in the syllabus for each of my classes. Generally, I assign letter grades for work during the quarter. These grades are converted to a numerical grade, and entered in an excel spreadsheet. My excel spreadsheet is the master record for each class. For students' convenience these grades are usually uploaded to the UCLA gradebook. Because of the process of aligning categories between my excel spreadsheet and the online gradebook, inaccuracies are introduced into the system. The excel spreadsheet I keep of grades is the gradebook of record in all of my classes.

Students occasionally ask me to change their final grade, most often from a lower grade to a higher grade. Unless there is a clear error in math in the gradebook of record for the class (my excel spreadsheet), I cannot entertain these requests.

If you have read this far, it is probably because you feel you deserve a higher grade. To appeal your grade, you must:
-send me a request via email stipulating the reason you feel you deserve a higher grade. The email must include:
-convincing evidence that your grade is lower than you deserve
-an agreement to have all of your work for the class re-graded
-an agreement to accept the assignment of a new grade, whether it is higher or lower than the grade you are appealing.
If you cannot agree to these stipulations, please do not ask me to change your grade.


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General Information Concerning Letters of Recommendation

If you are reading this, it is because you are considering asking me to write you a letter of recommendation. I am happy to comply with these requests, but only if you meet a series of conditions. These conditions insure that I am an appropriate person to write a letter of recommendation. Letters of recommendation take a considerable amount of time to compose if they are to have any weight at all. Accordingly, if you do not meet these conditions, you should probably find someone else to write a letter of recommendation for you.

Along with the conditions, there are several requirements with which you must comply if you want me to write you a letter of recommendation. Often students (current and former) ask me for letters with unrealistically short deadlines--I can no longer entertain these requests. Similarly, students often ask me to write multiple letters of recommendation for essentially the same type of program--again, I can no longer entertain these requests. Please make sure that your request fits the parameters of my requirements before asking me for a letter of recommendation.

The conditions and requirements vary slightly depending on your status. I have one set of conditions and requirements for undergraduates, and one set of conditions and requirements for graduate students.

Please follow the instructions in the appropriate area (undergraduate or graduate) below. I will not write letters of recommendation for requests that do not comply with these requirements.

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Conditions and Requirements for Undergraduate Student Letters of Recommendation

Conditions


There are several conditions you must meet for me to write you a letter of recommendation.
1. You must have taken two classes with me, and received a grade of "B+" or higher in one of those classes OR
2. You must have taken a single class with me, and received a grade of "A-" or higher OR
3. You must be a major or minor in Scandinavian Languages and Cultures AND
4. The program or fellowship for which you are applying has a deadline at least 21 days from the date of your request
If you do not meet these conditions, STOP. I cannot write you a letter of recommendation.

Requirements


The requirements for a letter of recommendation are fairly straight forward. Along with your request for a letter of recommendation, you must furnish me with:
1. Your personal essay or "statement of purpose". If you do not have this, you are not ready to ask me for a LOR
2. A copy of your resume or CV (curriculum vitae). If you do not know what this is, please click here. You are not ready to ask me for a LOR if you do not have this prepared.
3. A copy of your DPR or transcript.
4. The appropriate cover sheets for each of the programs or fellowships for which you are applying. These must be collated, and accompanied by a stamped envelope addressed to the appropriate office.
I prefer that you use the UCLA credential/LOR service; if you elect to do so, please provide me with a fully filled out form, including the waiver, for the credentialing service. The only blanks that should be on this form are the spaces for my employee ID number, and my signature. Please send this to me electronically as a PDF. DO NOT FORGET TO SIGN THIS WAIVER FORM.
In the case of Medical Schools, Law Schools and many other professional schools, there are specific forms and online sites that need to be used. In these cases, please provide me with a table specifying the program or school, the online LOR upload site, the login credentials if available, and the due date.
YOU MAY REQUEST UP TO 5 INDIVIDUAL LOR--after that, you must rely on the UCLA credential service, or the appropriate professional school service.
5. As the deadline approaches, send me an email ten days before the first deadline to make sure that I haven't forgotten about the deadline.
6. Please let me know the outcome of your applications
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Conditions and Requirements for Graduate Student Letters of Recommendation

Conditions


As a graduate student, you should have a good idea of whether or not I am an appropriate person to ask for a letter of recommendation. Although my conditions are not as strict as they are for undergraduates, for me to be an appropriate recommender, at least one of the following conditions must apply:
1. I have served in some capacity on you MA and/or PhD exam committee
2. I have served in some capacity on your PhD dissertation committee
3. You have taken one or more seminars or classes with me, and received grades of "A-" or higher
4. You have worked with me in some capacity on a funded research project
5. You have done independent study work with me.
If any of these conditions apply, then I am probably able to write you a letter of recommendation. You must comply with the following requirements.

Requirements


1. You must provide me with a spreadsheet of the LOR that you are requesting that includes:
Name of position, program or fellowship
Date the recommendation is due
Person or group to whom the recommendation is to be addressed
Address where to send the recommendation--this address must be broken into 5 fields: street address 1, street address 2, city, state, zip
Rank of the position
Field of the position, program or fellowship
email to which electronic LOR can be sent
website to which electronic LOR can be uploaded
login credentials for website
If any of the fields are not relevant for the specific position, program or fellowship, leave them blank
2. You must provide me with addressed, stamped envelopes with a yellow sticky note indicating the due date on each envelope, for LOR that cannot be submitted electronically.
3. You must send me, via email, a copy of your letter of application for each position, program or fellowship.
4. You must send me, via email, a copy of your CV.
5. You must give me at least 21 days notice for any LOR request.
6. You may request up to a total of 20 LOR in any academic year. I strongly urge you to have my LOR placed on file at the UCLA career service.
7. As the deadline approaches, send me an email ten days before the first deadline to make sure that I haven't forgotten about the deadline.
8. Please let me know the outcome of your applications
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Independent Study

I am happy to entertain independent study projects from both undergraduate and graduate students. Before approaching me with a request for an independent study class, please prepare a short paragraph describing two to three possible independent study projects. In your description, include a short justification for why you believe the independent study course would be a worthwhile pursuit.
Students routinely sign up for independent study courses, only to discover well into the quarter that the workload can be quite demanding. Think hard before tackling these very challenging projects/classes.
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Advising

I am happy to add graduate students to my group of advisees. Please set up an appointment with me if you are interested in working with me. My general fields of interest are in folklore, Humanities computing, ethnography, popular culture, and literature. My geographic areas of focus include Scandinavia and Korea.
My advisees come from several departments; currently I am working with graduate students in Scandinavian, Asian Languages and Cultures, World Arts and Cultures, and Ethnomusicology. I have worked with students in Comparative Literature, Germanic Languages and Literatures, History, Folklore and Mythology, and Computer Science.
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