Over a decade ago, this author published and posted articles that provided evidence that the bar for educational quality has been declining for a half of a century [1, 2].  Grades are inflating despite student surveys that indicate that students are studying a maximum of one hour outside of class for each class hour.  This is grossly inconsistent with the traditional meaning of a credit hour which requires at least 2 hours out of class for each in class hour.  A demonstration of this evaluation is that labs generally require three hours for each lab credit.  The trend of lowering standards needs to be reversed if the U.S. expects to have an educated society and serve as a model for other countries. 

In addition to quality, there is a significant issue with quantity.  As research has increased the body of knowledge, textbooks have increased in thickness and coverage.  Judgments need to be made concerning which topics need to be included.  Unfortunately, there is a tendency to cover all topics with the result that there is often minimal learning except by the best students.  C students often have little long term learning despite the C grade meaning that average competency with the material has been achieved.  Due to grade inflation, the grade of B is probably now closer to the average grade and a grade of C often means that competency has not been achieved.  Awarding a grade of C often does the student a disservice especially in courses that serve as prerequisites.  Chances of success for a C student in a subsequent course are not necessarily reasonable. 

In addition to the need for a reversal in the trend for educational standards and much more care needed in prioritizing topic selection, much more emphasis needs to be given to decreasing rote learning while increasing study that provides insight.  Examples of approaches that can be used on some chemical topics are included in the references below [3, 4, 5].

1.  http://murov.info/edstandardsbee2007.htm
2.  http://murov.info/highed.htm
3.  http://murov.info/isotopes.htm
4.  http://murov.info/oxidation.htm
5.  http://murov.info/chemenrichment.htm

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