This UMD Professor Gives The Cruelest Extra Credit Question That Has Been Screwing Over Students For 7 Years

by 3 years ago  •  2 Comments

I saw this a few days ago and I didn’t get what all the hooplah was about, but since it’s been making its way around the Internet we may as well show you the question that people have been geeking over:


Here you have the opportunity to earn some extra credit on your final paper grade. Select whether you want 2 points or 6 points added onto your final paper grade. But there’s a small catch: if more than 10% of the class selects 6 points, then no one gets any points. Your responses will be anonymous to the rest of the class, only I will see the responses.

The question has been called various forms of “cruel and unusual punishment” over the past week, but really it just boils down to a matter of whether the kids in your class are selfish douchebags or not. Everyone picks 2 points, everyone wins. If you pick 6 points, congratulations you’re an asshole. Just because you dicked around in class all semester and desperately need the 6 points on your final paper since you’re borderline illiterate and haven’t attended the class since syllabus week doesn’t mean you should screw over the other ~100 or so kids in the class.

According to Professor Selterman, he’s been throwing that question in at the end of his exams since 2008, and only once in a 7-year span have enough students picked the two-point option and gotten the extra credit. According to UMD’s course registration website Selterman teaches PSYC221, for which the average grades span between B’s and A’s via OurUMD:


In other words, this class apparently isn’t that hard as long as you’re not a moron. If you find yourself desperately needing 6 points at the end of the semester you were doing something wrong.


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