Self-evaluation and the real world

In one of my courses, I set participation grades by asking the students to rate themselves – tell me which grade they think they deserve, why they should have it, and what they could have done better in the course. (I snarfed this idea from my colleage Bill Schiano at Bentley.)
So – how do the students do? Not too bad, actually, as seen here:
Grades wanted vs. grades given
A few outliers, but most students either hit it right on, or, in a spirit of optimism, gave themselves grades slightly better than they got. The biggest difference was in the expectation of a “standard” grade (that is, for someone who shows up and is prepared most of the time, but doesn’t say much.) For me, that is a C or C+, for the students that was a B-. Not much of a difference when things are added up, though. No prizes for guessing the genders of those who stongly overrated or underrated themselves….
(note that the table is not complete – it misses those who did not send in a self-evaluation sheet.)
And the summer stretches out before me….