Wednesday, June 27, 2007

A Word To Students

OK, I've been reading some rounds of blogs with mostly complaints about people who do things that sound really, really stupid when you write them out in list-form on a blog. I teach college-level courses. I shall take a break from my usual autism topic to just say; here's some tips on how to really rankle a professor...

How to Really Get Your Professor In A Bad Mood:

1. Don't show up or complete a midterm. Show up afterwards or better yet, email, saying "Oops, I forgot to take the midterm. Will this affect my grade?" Yes. Yes it will.
2. Write a long, whiney email about how much work the class is. Explain that you are working a full-time job, raising kids, and trying to do a full courseload. You'll get bonus grumpiness if the prof is an adjunct, since it is likely that they are doing the euqivalent of all this while trying to hold down three or four jobs to your one- and being paid less.
3. Ask lots and lots of questions that are clearly answered in the syllabus. For example, "When is the midterm due?" or "do we have to participate in discussions this week?" or a perennial favorite, "What chapter are we on?"
4. Write rambling, tangential posts on discussion forums in poor English, then complain when you are asked to clarify the post. Ditto for in-classroom comments. Do this a lot for lots of extra grumpiness. For extra, extra bonus, complain to the Dean about your grade.
5. MIs-spell important terms and/or names in non-timed assignments. Complain when you don't get a perfect score. More extra bonus points for complaining to the Dean.
6. "Forget" to complete the first three weeks' worth of assignments. Complain loudly about how the professor wasted your money when they advise that you withdraw from the course. More bonus points for contacting the Dean.
7. Post unprofessional, "humorous" posts on discussion forums, or make inappropriate, off-topic jokes in class. Complain when the professor points out that the post or joke is inappropriate. Complain more when the professor deletes such posts or stops calling on you. LOTS of bonus points for whining to the Dean. Even the Dean will give you bonus grumpiness.
8. Turn in a paper that is 13 pages when the assignment was 20-25 pages. Or don't cite sources or examples when the directions clearly state you need to do so. Complain that you need the course to graduate- and you need at least a C. Guess what happens if you protest to the Dean (or Department Chair)...
9. Stop coming to class. Comlain about failing same class when you return the next semester. Bonus points for having sent emails about how you needed a certain grade in the same class to transfer/get off academic probation/graduate.
10. Sign up for class with long waiting list. Drop class. Sign up for it again. Drop it. Sign up for it again. Withdraw from it. Sign up for it again. Drop it again. Sign up for it again. Fail it...
11. Complain about other students getting accomodations... when you have no disabilities. Lots and lots of extra ire for complaining to the Dean about "favoritism." More bonus grumpiness for going onto public websites like "" and making nasty comments about the professor being an unfair grader (and yes, there are ways to know who send those comments, people... especially if you are registered.)

Students who flunk classes because they couldn't be bothered to do the work or follow directions always makes me grumpy. Don't let it happen to you.


Suzanne said...

Sorry... can't help myself.
I've always been a rotten "receptacle" (The more completely she fills the receptacles, the better a teachers she is. The more meekly the receptacles permit themselves to be filled, the better students they are.)
What about students who can average a B-, even while avoiding homework and choosing not to follow directions?
Does that make you grumpy too?
Not as grumpy since I got out of Teaching

Club 166 said...

How about-

Students complain about not being taught "x",

You take the time and make the effort to set up a special session to cover "x",

No one shows up.

Joeymom said...

Yes, or having them make this huge deal about wanting a rview session, and no one shows up. :P

pf said...

These are the same people who when they get out won't be able to pay their taxes, bills, pick up their kids, get to work, finish their work, live, etc on time.

And everyone else will be to blame.

Might as well slap 'em silly while you got 'em. Maybe one in ten will wake up.