While looking at the exam score distribution for PSYC 100 Midterm 1, Professor Mary Maldon noticed something was off almost immediately.
“The scores for most of the class who don’t pay attention to me were normally distributed and as expected,” explained Prof. Maldon, “But there was a sharp drop in scores for students with last names close to the beginning of the alphabet. Alberts, Berman, you name it.”
Students were split up into various rooms for the exam based on their last names, with students with last names A-E being located in Foellinger Auditorium.
“We started investigating as soon as we got the news,” said head TA Mike Orchard. “I was tasked with asking the TAs in that room if they noticed anything strange during the exam. Unfortunately, 3 out of the 5 had headphones in and were browsing Facebook the entire exam, so they weren’t any help.”
But with the remaining two TAs’ responses, a trend began to emerge and they started to sniffle around for the answer.
“Yeah, there was this one kid in the auditorium who would just not stop sniffling,” admitted TA Tucker Nettle. “He must have been pretty sick, because he was really going at it. It was basically continuous throughout the entire 90-minute exam.”
The student has still not been identified, but it’s possible he may have been suffering from seasonal allergies, or perhaps even the common cold. Maldon now has to think how to handle situations like this in the future.
“We’re offering students that had to suffer through that ordeal the opportunity to retake the exam,” closed Prof. Maldon, “There may be a policy change in our future where we might just have our exams in McKinley Health Center.”