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The Community Grading Project

Dan Solove’s Concurring Opinions post on grading law school exams, wise though it appears to be, suffers from a 21st century flaw:  It subscribes to a belief in the wisdom of the one.  Have law faculty learned nothing from The Wisdom of Crowds?  The Wealth of Networks?  The Peer to Patent Project?

Law professors should load their exams into a wiki and create a WikiProject for their subject area.  All law professors who teach the subject of the exam should be members of the WikiProject and should both load their classes’ exams into the project and offer comments and grades on all exams that are part of the project.

Submission of comments and grades would be voluntary, rather than mandatory, but it is expected that the social norms of the academic community would be sufficient to instill and reinforce an obligation to participate fully in the life of the discipline.  Homogeneity of the population and frequent opportunities for repeat contact among the members being what they are.

Initial membership should be determined by AALS section — for example, all members of the AALS Section on Contracts could be members of the Contract Law grading WikiProject – though in this era of globalization, faculty in other countries who teach the subject should be invited to be members as well.  Each WikiProject member should add comments to each exam based on that member’s own method. 

In other words:  Why rely on grades produced by a single toss down a single stairwell, when hundreds of tosses down hundreds of stairwells would improve the accuracy and reliability of the results?