Academic Performance

Grade report for SATC math courses, dated Oct. 1918 Grade report for SATC history courses, dated Oct. 1918

 

 

These grade reports are two of several from SATC courses in the WWI collection. With half of the semester under their belt, these students demonstrated that they needed to significantly improve their academic performance. The top document reports grades from about fifty SATC students in math courses, all of whom received a 75. The bottom document reports grades from about twenty SATC students in history courses, whose grades range between 70 and 85. These grades are representative of the grades in all of the reports in the collection, from French and German to Chemistry and English. These are "Monthly Reports," which meant that the SATC authorities were keeping a close eye on the academic performance of their students. Probably expecting more progression as the semester passed, these exceedingly average grades prompted a national notice on new academic policies in the SATC.

Letter regarding academic performance of SATC students, dated Nov. 5, 1918

Letter regarding academic performance of SATC students dated Nov. 5, 1918

The academic performance of the SATC students was unsatisfactory not just at Southwestern University but throughout all national units, as indicated by this letter sent to all "Commanding Officers, District Inspecting Officers, District Educational Directors, and Heads of SATC Institutions." It was written on November 5, just a couple of weeks after the midterms that revealed the poor grades of Southwestern's unit members. As previous documents have done, this letter demonstrates the far-reaching bureaucratic nature of the SATC; the authorities hoped to fix the problems surrounding academic performance by introducing measures to all schools in the assumption that all schools faced the same problems. The letter claims that the reason for the poor academic performance of the men in many SATC units is the conflict between military duties and academic programs and the belief among members that grades count for little in Officers' Training Camp selection. To solve the latter, a new plan for selection was to be imposed that required a minimum rating of "Intelligence as indicated by the Academic record." By explicitly tying classroom grades to Officers' Training Camp selection, the SATC authorities made the central importance of academic performance to unit membership extremely clear. However, it is unknown how successful these measures were in improving academic performance, as just six days later, on November 11, 1918, World War I ended. The end of the Student Army Training Corps was to swiftly follow.

Academic Performance