Two-part question:

A) Are there two meanings to “grading on the curve”? Using TomCat’s thread as one example at this link: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=377241, I have heard this simplified explanation.

But, technically, grading on the curve refers to the Bell Curve and requires a statistical analysis to assure an even distribution by a statistical definition. You know, std deviation and such.

B) Can the latter method really hurt as many as it helps? One Senior High math teacher claimed he wouldn’t curve for this reason. Is that really true? Has anyone personally experienced this? Or, is it a theorhetical result, but unlikely if the class needed the help of curve in the first place, I WAG?

What’s the SD? (Please don’t get bogged down in the statistical nitty-gritty).

- Jinx