How Much Should Homework Count?

Here's what education expert Rick Wormeli has to say about it

Homework should probably count zero percent. But 5% or less is acceptable. According to Rick Wormeli, the grade report should be an indication of what a student has learned against the standards. By counting homework practice, he contends that the grade report is in essence falsified, perhaps even unethical.

Grade Inflation

Colleges and universities are having to contend with this grade inflation. The are finding out that many students with A’s in high school were in fact B or even C students. This is because their grade reports reflected their level of compliance (i.e., turning in homework, sitting attentively in class, etc.), rather than their level of mastery against standards.

Grade Deflation

The other consideration is for the student who earns A’s on every exam, but seldom submits practice. If his or her teacher counts homework as 10%, the highest this student can hope for (in spite of perfect test scores) is a B. This too is an inaccurate reflection of this student’s level of mastery against the standards.


Homework is certainly and important part of the mastery process, but Mr. Wormeli says let’s call it what it really is — practice! Assignments should be for practicing what has been taught. Homework is not for learning; it’s for remembering in June.

Something to think about…