My boyfriend and I recently started a web design and development certificate program together. I’ve been blogging here and there for over five years and am pretty active on social media networks. My boyfriend, on the other hand, barely even knows what a blog is and has visited his twitter profile only a couple of times. I thought it would be a good idea though for us to start the web design program together so that he can supplement his sporadic income with helping me with some of my online business projects.
When we first started the class, it was obvious that I knew more about web development and social media than other participants in the class. In fact, it often seemed like I was more skilled with social media networks than the professor. I actively participated in the class, attended every class session, and completed all of my projects. For our first class, my boyfriend missed two class sessions and didn’t complete a few projects. (Although he did do most of the reading, and prepped me on it before class).
It was during the third class when I first started to suspect that the professor was sexist. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but it had something to do with the professor always deferring to my boyfriend when asking questions about our class project that we were working on together. I’m pretty sure that it was evident that the websites that we were working on were my websites, and my boyfriend would be helping me with them, but every time the teacher had a question about them he would just ask my boyfriend. The only time that he would ask me questions would be about education related topics. It was bizarre.
I started to complain about the professor being sexist and at first my boyfriend didn’t take me seriously. According to him, I was reading too much into it and he thought that the professor was speaking to both of us in the same way. He told me that I read sexism into a lot of things that aren’t necessarily so. I began to doubt myself.
We worked on our project together, with most of the ideas being spearheaded by me. I’m accustomed to being in school and he hasn’t studied in a quite a bit of time, so I completed our web development plan with some of his ideas and wrote it up. I completed the powerpoint presentation that we had to give on the last day of the class. For our very first class that we took, I honestly completed most of the work because my boyfriend was overwhelmed with getting caught up in the web world.
When we presented our presentation, it was natural to me because I was used to doing presentations at work. My boyfriend lost his train of the thought during some of his sections, and I had to jump in to help him. It should have been obvious that I was more well prepared than him during the presentation.
Today I opened my mail and the grades had been mailed to my house. I opened my boyfriend’s grade first and saw that he received an A. I then opened my grades and saw that I had received a B. What the hell??
I called my boyfriend and told him about the discrepancy, and he was just as perplexed as I. He agreed that it was obvious that the web project was more my idea than mine. He also agreed that I outperformed him by ten times during our presentation. “Perhaps he maybe is sexist, ’cause that’s the only reason I can think as to why he gave you a lower grade than me,” he said.
I’m irked right now and I want to give the professor a piece of my mind, but as I type he is supposedly giving us grades for our second class that we just took with him. I also don’t want to lose my cool and tell him what a horrible professor that I thought he was considering that my boyfriend and I had to look to an “An Idiot’s Guide to Html” when he couldn’t answer many of our questions.
When it all really boils down to it, it’s not the grade that bother me….but it’s the principal that I put more work and energy into the class and the project than my boyfriend did and he still received a higher grade.
What would you do? Would you say anything?