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FREEDOM OF THE B's

In publishing the Dean's List the Office expresses the hope that "any man who feels that he is entitled to the privileges of the Dean's List at this time will consult his Assistant Dean as soon as possible." The CRIMSON accepts this invitation on behalf of a considerable number of men whom it feels are actually, if not technically, so entitled.

Candidacy for a degree with distinction, it is ruled, is a necessary qualification for men in Group Three of the Rank List. This means that two classes of men in this division are excluded: first, Seniors and Juniors who, as lower classmen, attained in their field of concentration grades so low as to prevent their acquiring the necessary number of B's for distinction; second, Seniors and Juniors who have not taken the departmental courses required for such a degree. We assume, of course, that no one can become a candidate if his previous work is such that he cannot possibly meet the requirements.

What is the reason for this exclusion? Is it that a man, merely because he is a candidate for distinction, is better able to exercise his own judgment in planning his work than a man with the same marks at the last examinations who is not such a candidate? Is the primary object of the Dean's List to induce men to try for distinction? Or is it considered that a student who made a bad start, but has since shown great improvement, is less to be rewarded than the man who has never had a D but has barely kept in Group Three?

We believe that the purpose of such an institution as the Dean's List should be to realize in some measure the ideal of greatest possible freedom for upper classmen in organizing their work. We also believe that the Office had this same principle in mind when drawing up the regulations. If this is indeed the real purpose of the Dean's List, then the requirement regarding Degrees with Distinction is one which defeats this end.