(Note: I wrote these back when I was an undergraduate grader at Carleton quite a while ago. After a few years of seeing the same sorts of mistakes, I wanted to write something for the students to help them avoid some simple pitfalls. This was the result.)

How to Make a Grader, Prof, and Anyone Happy

(With Things You Probably Have Around Your Room)

By the Cheshire Cat,

Known to Comps Czars as John Weiss

I have compiled some things about doing problem sets for Astro 110. These would probably serve as well in most Math/Science classes really. Many of them are not rigid rules, simply suggestions to make the write-ups easier to grade. Easier to grade means higher points, so this makes everyone happy, of course. A few things are vital, but often get forgotten. These things are:

The Vitally Important Stuff

Stuff that You Will lose points for not doing

These items are mostly important so that we can see that you did the work and didn't copy it, in one sense (yes, we are pretty good at catching that, although it happens pretty seldom :-). More importantly, at least in my book, we can catch your mistakes this way, and give you partial (or even total credit) if you follow these rules, even when you make a mistake:

Things that make us Happytm

These are things that we really, really appreciate, but if you can't manage them for whatever reason, it isn't the end of the known universe. They should also prove useful to you, however, so give them consideration.

Wow, I didn't mean for that to take four pages. Don't take this as a Bible or anything, but I hope that these will help you in doing the problem sets and, ultimately, in learning about astronomy. And I do think that they will help we graders help you.

Thanks for reading, and happy astro-ing!