Stay accountable, it’s not always professor

By Abbey Serena and By Abbey Serena

The attitude that you have toward your professors says a lot about you. And I get it; I’ve had a professor who never actually looked over any of the essays that my classmates turned in. She had her assistant do all of that for her. That absolutely bothered me, because I had some person I had never even seen grading my papers. I think that is something that would warrant a low score on an evaluation.

But last year during my second term was when I started to notice how disrespectful some students were being toward professors that I had no problem with. I had a large lecture hall filled with approximately three hundred students. This professor didn’t take attendance because of how many students were in the class, and each day I would hear someone who thought he was “too-cool-for-school” say that he only came to the exams. After the exam, he would whine to his friends that the questions were too hard and he might have to drop out.

In this same class, I heard students all around me gossiping about what Stacy did at the party on Friday, or how many drinks Harold had before he passed out. And while I can expect this in any class, what bothered me about the talking was that these students spoke as if they were just hanging out in their rooms, with no deference to the professor who was lecturing up front.

In another class, I sat beside of a girl who would get out her laptop at the beginning of class, open up games and Facebook, and not glance up once. After a while, my professor finally said that he had been documenting students’ various activities during class and would be taking points off at the end of the semester. He taught me to never underestimate my professors. They’re not as senile as some students think.

I’ve also been through a class in which the professor passed around an attendance sheet, and I’ve watched some of the students sign their names and then leave. And then the students wonder why they’re failing their classes and have to become “super-seniors.”

I have no idea where this term came from, but I know that there’s nothing super about spending five or six years in college.

Professors are usually aware of what you’re doing in class—or not in class, says the student who only shows up for the exams—and they probably don’t want you there any more than you want to be there. When students complain about their professors without any good reason to do so, they should remind themselves that they, not the professors, signed themselves up for that class.

The point to all of this is that it’s fine to disagree with your professors’ methods of teaching. I’ve had professors that don’t grade my work, sit at their desks and put their heads down or email us our assignments the night before they’re due. But I’ve never complained about a grade I’ve been given if I consistently skip class or spend my time chatting about going out on Friday night.

Students need to start taking some of the blame for themselves, and if they realize that college isn’t for them because they spend more time at clubs or on Facebook than they do on their schoolwork, they need to reconsider spending twenty-thousand dollars—give or take a few thousand—elsewhere.

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