The Future for Chinese/English Dictionaries mentioned that MDBG doesn't have "grading on a curve", and it seems that it's still rather hard to find a translation for this. A rather literal translation might be "按曲线评分". Here are some suggestions from around the web:
- Google Translate: 曲线上的等级
- Wikipedia: 拉curve、常模参照、拉曲线
- Canvas Help: 评分曲线
- Blackboard Help: 曲线成绩
What are the most usual terms for "grading on a curve" or "to curve" (i.e., to grade on a curve, usually with the effect of raising grades, possibly by a set number of points rather than to fit a predetermined distribution of grades), both the practice (noun) and the action (verb)?
I guess it's telling that Wikipedia named their article "拉curve" rather than something with only Chinese characters, and the article was created as late as September 2019, so perhaps there is no established term in Chinese?
If you're not familiar with grading on a curve, here is the description from Wikipedia:
In education, relative grading, marking on a curve (BE) or grading on a curve (AE, CE) (also referred to as curved grading, bell curving, or using grading curves) is a method of assigning grades to the students in a class in such a way as to obtain or approach a pre-specified distribution of these grades having a specific mean and derivation properties, such as a normal distribution (also called Gaussian distribution).1 The term "curve" refers to the bell curve, the graphical representation of the probability density of the normal distribution, but this method can be used to achieve any desired distribution of the grades – for example, a uniform distribution.
拉Curve1（又称为常模参照、拉曲线）是一种教育界常用的评级方法，英式英语称为marking on a curve，美式英语称为grading on a curve ，又称为curved grading、bell curving、grading curves）是以预先设定的正态分布(即高斯分布)形式评核学生的分数或等级。术语“Curve”是指以图表形式展示正态分布的概率密度的曲线。大学常用的评级方法GPA便是使用拉Curve来区分一级、二级及三级荣誉。而著名的香港中学会考(HKCEE)及香港高级程度会考(HKALE)便是采用拉Curve形式评分。