I have always thought that grading on a scale is stupid. When a teacher/professor grades tests based on a scale, the teacher grades each student based on their performance compared to other students. This is a stupid way to do things because it can both cause some students who know the curriculum well to fail a class, and it can cause students who don't know the curriculum to pass a class (or even potentially get an A in a class!). If everyone in, say, a calculus class knows how to solve all types of calculus problems on the tests compentently, the teacher/professor should pass everyone in the class. If nobody in a calculus class knows how to solve calculus problems on the tests at an adequate level, the teacher/professor should fail everyone in the class. Many times in my life I have heard people say that teachers/professors should grade rigorously and fail incompetent students for two primary (and related) reasons: 1) passing incompetent students harms the reputation of the school or college and 2) if you pass incompetent students, it will result in incompetent /workers in the real world. I agree with both of these reasons. However, if teachers/professors grade the way i'm saying they should grade, there is no danger of teachers/professors passing incompetent students harming the reputation or the school or causing incompetent workers in the real world caused by the teachers' grading. Let's take the situation of students majoring in aeronautical engineering at a university taking a calculus class. I've heard people use as an example the idea that teachers/professors should not pass incompetent calculus students because " it will result in planes falling out of the sky and crashing." These people are (correctly) implying that the engineers' ability to design planes that won't fall out of the sky and crash is predicated to an extent on the engineers' calculus skills. If everyone in the calculus class in our example ( including the aeronautical engineering majors) is competent at solving all types of calculus problems, and the professor thus passes everyone in the class, then this will not result in planes falling out of the sky due to incompetent calculus students being given passing grades because everyone in the class is competent at solving calculus problems. Conversely, if everyone in the same class (including the aeronautical engineering majors) were very incompetent and awful at solving calculus problems and the professor graded on a scale and gave the least worst calculus student (who is still VERY incompentent) a grade of A and that least worst calculus student is an aeronautical engineering the major, then the professors' grading on a scale could result in planes falling out of the sky and crashing due to the incompetent student receiving a grade on a scale of an A.