The Chemistry Saga, continued

Monday, April 6, 2009

Oh. My. God.

Okay, so I perhaps have written a thing here or there about my chemistry class. This intro chem lab is going to be the absolute death of me. But hell if I'm not going to go down fighting.

So last Tuesday I did not go to lab because I had a fever and felt like heaping pile of crap. I rarely miss school, but I really just didn't think I'd make it through the day and in retrospect, I'm pretty sure it was a good decision. Health wise. Pain in my ass wise, it was a horrible call.

In an attempt to be responsible (let's keep that in mind) I drove myself out to school and dropped off the chemistry lab report that was due Tuesday afternoon so that it wouldn't be counted late. I read through my syllabus and because it said that points would be deducted for each weekday that a lab was late, I didn't want to chance it. I drove out, my idiotic professor wasn't in yet (I was like 5 minutes early), so I left it with my lab partner to turn in.

When I got home, I sent the lab professor an email, letting her know that I was sick and asking if I could use someone else's data to do this week's lab so I wouldn't get behind.

The next morning I got an email letting me know that, first, I'd need a doctor's note for my absence. Because apparently even in college, you can't just be sick. I called my doctor's office, told them my symptoms and they didn't want to see me. They said it sounded like the flu and for the protection of other patients, unless things escalated, they'd prefer if I stayed home (this is not terribly abnormal, nor unreasonable in my opinion). So I emailed her and told her this and casually mentioned that it seemed a little mother freaking ridiculous that I needed a doctor's note. Which, in retrospect was probably not necessary, but I didn't feel good and I was annoyed.

Next I called my neurologist's office who said they'd be happy to write me a note to excuse my absence. In fact, the nurse told me to call them whenever I needed one. It's almost like I have an excusable health condition that isn't to be toyed around with. Weird, right?

So I got my note. And when I got home from getting my note I had another email from the lab professor (to the whole class, not just me) letting me know that our test was being pushed up a week and telling us which labs to study. Silly me, I thought that I had not received my graded papers to study with, so I emailed her and asked if I could pick them up to help with my studying. You know, the quizzes and lab reports with all the pertinent information on them, that sort of thing.

When I got a response 2 days later, I discovered that no, she hadn't actually returned any of them. So we are being tested on material we haven't gone over and material we don't have at our disposal to study. Which is stellar, as always.

And this time she informed me that the lab I dropped off the day I was gone would not be counted because "someone else obviously turned it in." Um, no shit sherlock. I dropped it off at school. Does she think someone else did it for me? Hello, you have 4 weeks of labs of mine there, why don't you compare the handwriting? Or, I don't know, look through it and see that I obviously did it myself. Who the hell cares who turned it in?

The answer is of course, her. Because apparently, you can't turn in work if you're absent.

So, according to her, the right action would've been to hold on to the lab report and turn it in tomorrow, a week late, with a doctor's note. And because I didn't do that, she's not counting it. NOT COUNTING IT. That sound? Was my head exploding. I turned in an assignment ON TIME. I did the responsible thing and drove out to school when I felt like shit and she won't grade it. She also accused me of lying about my doctor's office not wanting to see me while sick, even though I had already told her that I had a doctor's note. So basically, even if I had been lying, which I WASN'T it was totally a moot point.

In true adult fashion, I sent her back an email that was perhaps a little lot snarkier than I should've, but you know what? This is fucking ridiculous. It just is. I'm doing everything I'm supposed to do in this course. I'm doing the homework, I'm studying for the tests (okay, right now I'm blogging instead of studying, but let's set that factoid aside for now), I'm even tutoring other students. And I'm getting screwed.

I'm angry on levels beyond my own ability to express them. I'm feeling cheated when I've done exactly what's been asked of me and more. I don't know how I could be more responsible (okay, not sending snarky emails, yes, we can check that off in the more responsible list, I know) or studious. What am I missing here?

I sense an epic battle of wills on the horizon. I also sense that there won't be any winners in this war.


Jess said...

I sense that your professor is a disorganized and uneducated cow.

Sounds like it's time to make a stink with whoever is higher up on the totem pole than she is.

LilSass said...




This woman is infuriating me for you!!!

I agree with Jess. It's long overdue and someone needs to hear about this. This is RIDICULOUS!!

Here here, we are your witnesses.

Sue G said...

Why not let someone else fight this war for you?

Like the department chair?

Perhaps the president of the university?

Perhaps anyone who has a functional brain?

I have lots of ideas, but I don't think our God smites anyone anymore.

(And by the way, wasn't this the same teacher who allowed cheating and who you called on that very topic??? So, does she really think YOU would cheat?)

Marin said...

I had a professor like this in Spanish last semester and I'm not entirely convinced that she didn't take a year off of my life.

Go to the department head. It works.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

I'd fight that battle with the school Katie. You did nothing wrong.


Carleen said...

You really need to take this to the department chair! This professor's behavior is outrageous. Perhaps the cooler head of the chair will help you to prevail in the end.

You do know that students have the right to challenge their grades, right?

Flea said...

Time to stop corresponding with the instructor and go above her head. Every time. Don't mess with her anymore. Go to whatever dean is responsible for her. Seriously.

Make sure you send them all the correspondence involved.

Don't waste your time with this woman anymore. Life's too frickin' short.

Becs said...

Oh, there may be a war, but you will win.

Insomniac said...

I'd email the department head if she won't count your lab. That is frakkin' ridiculous.

What a cow. Even at a school that docked you points for not showing up for lab (even if you were ill), you could STILL have someone else physically hand in your work if you were sick.

It's official. This woman is a horrible person.

The Floydster said...

I agree with everybody. Take it to the higher ups.

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