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Ultrinsic: A New Way to Gamble and Make School More Fun

August 12, 2010 2 comments

Ultrinsic.com is a new website that allows users to bet on their grades in college. The name means an ULTerior motivation that produces intRINSIC love of knowledge. Here’s how the creators came up with the idea:

While hanging out together one Sunday afternoon, I mentioned to my friend Steven Wolf that I had an exam the following day and that if I were to study I was sure to get an A. (At the time, I was a student at University of Pennsylvania.)  But I was enjoying my Sunday afternoon, and I told Steven that I had no intention of studying. That’s when, in order to provide me with motivation, we made the following agreement: If I got an A on the exam, he would give me $100, and if I didn’t get an A, I would give him $20. Steven and I quickly realized that lots of other students might like this kind of motivation.  To that end, we began developing what is now Ultrinsic Motivator Inc. – Jeremy Gelbart

I love this idea. If you’re like me, gambling on anything always adds fun and excitement, and while I am smart, I often have trouble motivating myself to put in the work that I should for my college classes. What better way to combine my love of gamble and my disdain for studying?

I’m currently entering my senior year, so I’ll only have a brief opportunity to use this site, but anyone entering their freshman year of college can put down $20 and turn it into $2000 if they manage to achieve a 4.0. Granted that is pretty tough at most schools, but for the rest of us, you can simply wager on getting any given grade in whatever class you choose. What’s impressive about Ultrinsic is that using your academic history and whatever information it can find on how tough the class is, it automatically comes up with custom odds for each individual for any class and any grade level. You can even use it as a fall-back plan, say betting $20 that you’ll get worse than a B, thus taking the sting out of it if this should happen. I would prefer using it for motivational purposes rather than as “grade insurance” but if you are less confident in your academic abilities this might not be a bad way to go.

Ultrinsic is currently available for 35 different colleges. I plan to try it out this fall, and I suggest you do the same.

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