

Honours: Dean's List
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Inaccuracies of GPA value calculations 
ACADIA UNIVERSITY TRANSCRIPTS 
MATHEMATICS COURSES  
Course Number  Course Name  Grade  GPA  
MATH 1013  INTRODUCTORY CALCULUS 1  A+  4.00  
MATH 1023  INTRODUCTORY CALCULUS 2  A  4.00  
MATH 1323  MATRIX ALGEBRA  A+  4.00  
MATH 1413  SETS, FUNCTIONS AND ALGORITHMS  A  4.00  
MATH 1423  GRAPH THEORY & MATRIX ALGEBRA  A  4.00  
MATH 2013  CALCULUS OF SEVERAL VARIABLES 1  A+  4.00  
MATH 2023  CALCULUS OF SEVERAL VARIABLES 2  A+  4.00  
MATH 2413  NUMERICAL METHODS 1  A+  4.00  
MATH 2433  ALGEBRAIC STRUCTURES  A  4.00  
Average GPA  4.00  
COMPUTER SCIENCE COURSES  
Course Number  Course Name  Grade  GPA  
COMP 1213  DIGITAL SYSTEMS  A  4.00  
COMP 1223  ASSEMBLY LANGUAGE AND COMPUTER ORGANIZATION  A  4.00  
COMP 2013  PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES  A+  4.00  
COMP 2023  SYSTEMS PROGRAMMING  A  3.67  
COMP 2903  COMPUTERS AND SOCIETY  A  4.00  
COMP 3553  COMPUTER GRAPHICS  A+  4.00  
COMP 3613  ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE  A  4.00  
COMP 3653  SOFTWARE ENGINEERING (Maim Chess project)  A  3.67  
COMP 3703  TRANSLATORS 1  A  3.67  
COMP 3713  OPERATING SYSTEMS 1  A  3.67  
COMP 3783  OBJECTORIENTED PROGRAMMING  A  3.67  
COMP 4223  ADVANCED COMPUTER ARCHITECTURE  A  4.00  
COMP 4983  PROJECT (Full Tilt project)  A+  4.00  
Average GPA  3.87  
PHYSICS COURSES  
Course Number  Course Name  Grade  GPA  
PHYS 1013  INTRODUCTORY PHYSICS 1  A+  4.00  
PHYS 1023  INTRODUCTORY PHYSICS 2  A  4.00  
PHYS 1513  ASTRONOMY 1  THE SOLAR SYSTEM  B+  3.33  
Average GPA  3.78  
ENGLISH COURSES  
Course Number  Course Name  Grade  GPA  
ENGL 1213  COMPOSITION 1  B  3.00  
ENGL 1223  COMPOSITION 2  B  3.00  
Average GPA  3.00  
ELECTIVE COURSES  
Course Number  Course Name  Grade  GPA  
PHIL 1406  INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY  B+  3.33  
ECON 1013  MICROECONOMIC PRINCIPLES  A  4.00  
ECON 1023  MACROECONOMIC PRINCIPLES  B  3.00  
GEOL 1013  OUR DYNAMIC EARTH  B  3.00  
Average GPA  3.33  
TRANSFER CREDITS  
Course Number  Course Name  % Grade  Grade  GPA 
COMP 1113  COMPUTER PROGRAMMING 1  98  A+  4.00 
COMP 1123  COMPUTER PROGRAMMING 2  98  A+  4.00 
COMP 2113  DATA STRUCTURES / FILE PROCESSING 1  93  A  4.00 
COMP 2123  DATA STRUCTURES / FILE PROCESSING 2  93  A  4.00 
COMP 3513  SYSTEMS ANALYSIS AND DESIGN 1  75  B  3.00 
COMP 3543  OPERATIONS RESEARCH  92  A  4.00 
COMP 3753  DATA BASE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS 1  80  A  3.67 
COMP 3773  OBJECTORIENTED SYSTEMS  72  B  2.67 
Average  87.6  A  3.67 
EXPLANATION OF GPA VALUE CALCULATIONS 

*These percentage ranges are provided to assist other institutions in interpreting letter grades. Their only internal application is with the university scholarship committee. They are not reported elsewhere. 
INACCURACIES OF GPA VALUE CALCULATIONS 
Introduction
Problem #2 The A range of grades (A, A, and A+) covers 20% of the percentage scale, from 80100%. For all other letters, the range of grades that they cover is only 10% of the percentage scale (B from 7080%, C from 6070%, etc.). This means that the average A+ student makes a 6.7% higher mark than the average A student, where as the average B+ student makes only a 3.3% higher mark than the average B student. If a student is in the A range of grades, students must increment their percentage grade twice as much as normal, before seeing an increment in their letter grade. Even if Problem #1 (above) was fixed (i.e. there was a distinction in GPA values for A+ and A), any student who achieves an 80% (an A) or above, is not being fully credited for their work. Is it That Bad? Just to show how ridiculous the scale is bent for the A range of grades, consider the following: If the GPA conversion table would continue to be linear after the 80% range (as it is before the 80% range), then an 8386% would be a 4.00 GPA, a 9396% would be a 5.00 GPA, a 9799% would be a 5.33 GPA, and a 100% would be a 5.67 GPA (over 40% more than the 4.00 GPA you actually get!). Essentially, because the scale is bent, it makes it easier for a student to achieve an A range grade, since all you require is an 80% (my high school considers the A range of grades to represent the 90100% range). But, it makes achieving an A or an A+ grade extremely hard. And those students who did so are credited with very few GPA points (or zero GPA points, in the case of an A+ grade) to indicate their extra performance. Consequences of the Problems For each course, a student has a final percentage grade (0 to 100%). These percentage grades are converted to GPA values according to the table above. This table rounds off the percentage grade by up to 2%, with the exception of an A or an A, in which the percentage grade is rounded off up to 4%, with the exception of an A+ grade, which is always rounded off downwards... And it can be rounded downwards by up to 10%! (this is because an A+ [94100%] receives a 4.0 GPA value, which represents an average grade of 90%). It is these inaccurate GPA values which are averaged to calculate sessional and cumulative GPA values. Also, as any person with elementary knowledge of mathematical concepts will tell you, it does not make any sense to take an average of numbers that do not represent a linear scale. You would not find the average volume of a bunch of cubes by averaging the length of one side on each cube, and then cubing the result. This is essentially what universities are doing. Example of the Problem Since Acadia University has a policy of not releasing the percentage grades of any course, the problem is usually hidden. Since I do have the percentage grades of my transfer credits above, I can use them as an example. You will notice that the average percentage grade of my transfer credits is 87.6%. Once these grades have been converted to GPA values, the average GPA value is a 3.67. If I did not know my percentage average (as is the case for any course taken at Acadia University), I would use the average GPA of 3.67 (the grade that the university would release) to calculate my percentage average at 83%. This is off the actual percentage by almost 5%! What Should be Done At the very least, an A+ should be awarded a 4.33 GPA value, as it is in some universities, so that they do not hurt the students who are capable of achieving A+'s. This would remove the major roundoff errors. After this fix, the only errors left would be the rounding of percentage grades to GPA values. At most, these errors may accumulate up to a 4% difference of the actual value (which is still quite significant, actually). But, at least there would be no discrimination between those students who perform well enough to receive A+'s, and those who do not. I find it rather amusing that technologically advanced universities cannot perform simple averaging properly to avoid roundoff errors; a concept that is taught at the elementary school level. Thank you for your time in reading this. 


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