Newsy: Website Lets Students Bet on Grades

A company called Ultrinsic has initiated a plan that would be proposed at 36 colleges and universities that allows students to place bets on their grades. But is it alright to gamble on grades?
We’re analyzing coverage from WCCO, CNBC, KCBD, USA Today, and Fox News.
WCCO explains how the company, barely a year old, works: “You have to register, upload your schedule, and give the site access to your official school records. The website then calculates the odds, based on student’s college history, and any information it can dig up on the difficulty of each class, the topic, and several other factors. Now wages start at $25 and go up depending on usage…”
CNBC also explains that students can also secure themselves when at a potential loss: “If you think you might fail, well they allow you to hedge your bet by buying some grade insurance…”
While KCBD says students like the idea, but a gambling law expert isn’t sure the site can get away with what they’re doing: 
DANIEL GERRISH: “If there is that added incentive for getting a little extra cash for making an A, I may not be like ‘Oh, B’s fine.”
CHASEN SMITH: “Sometimes for college students, money is more important to them because they struggle, ya know, to make ends meet…”
ANCHOR: “Texas Tech law professor, HTRTRJ, specializes in gambling law, and he says this new wager, is on thin legal ice.”
WESLEY COCHRAN: “The way that this website attempts to get around that is to say they’ve taken out the element of chance, that grades are due to skill…”
The director of the National Survey for Student Engagement tells USA Today that this website will just make letter grade obsession worse and plagiarism more widespread: “Students who are determined to be academically dishonest can find out all sort of creative ways to do it…This might create even more incentive to figure out how to cheat the system.”
And finally, Fox News anchor Shepard Smith tosses in his two cents: “The president of the website says it gives students an immediate pay off for their hard work. Nobody in America is learning anything anymore. We’re falling to the bottom of all of the charts. And now we have a website where you can bet on your grades. BET AWAY. We’re falling apart as you watch….”
So what do you think about gambling on grades?
Writer: Jenn Ballard


No copyright infringement intended. For educational, non-commercial purposes only.
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About Labor Teacher

NNET, Secondary Education, Labor School, Vigo
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