Have you ever had that teacher who goes off on tangents, does not follow the course syllabus that they made, gives ridiculously hard tests, or makes you feel like an idiot when you ask a question? If your professor shows one or more of these symptoms, they may have a case of bad professor syndrome. If you have come into contact with someone like this, be careful. It could be contagious and affect you as their student. We have all had bad teachers somewhere in our lifetime of education. If you get stuck with a teacher like this, don’t fret. There are preventions and treatments to this predicament.
I have two suggestions to prevent you from getting an absolutely horrible professor. The first is to go online and check out reviews that the professor has gotten. These reviews can tell you a lot about a professor. An excellent website for this is ratemyprofessor.com. I highly suggest going there and checking out what students have to say about the teacher. If there is only one or two reviews, I suggest not basing your entire opinion on just a couple of them. The reviews can be extremely biased. Just because one student had a bad experience does not mean that you will too. Make sure to do your research and check out as many student reviews as possible.
Another suggestion is to ask former students what they think about the professor. There is no better account than a firsthand perspective. Ask a friend, or acquaintance, who took the class about what the professor is like, what their tests include, how their teaching methods are and how they treat their students. All of these are very important to know. If some of the answers to these questions don’t sit right with you, then you might have a problem learning from this professor.
If you didn’t do all you could to prevent yourself from the bad professor syndrome, you may have gotten stuck with it. But it isn’t too late! You still have time to register for a different teacher. Get online and start searching for a new and better professor. If you are out of luck and there are no extra classes, then I suggest you drop the class. You can always wait a semester and take it from a different professor. This is a great idea especially if it works out okay with your schedule.
If you cannot wait a semester to take this class and you must take it now, then there are still solutions. You must be your own teacher. If a professor is doing a horrible job at teaching and isn’t answering your questions, take hold of the class yourself. Study that textbook like you’ve never studied a textbook before! Check to see if there are any teacher’s aides for the class. If there are, go to their labs or their office hours and learn from them. They will know how to help you.
No matter what, don’t give up. You cannot die from bad professor syndrome. Just be positive and if you have to stick it out, then that’s what you’ll do. You can get through it.
About the Author
Meagan Hollman is a writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers helps people determine if an online education is right for them and helps them understand which online courses they can choose from to reach their goals. The site even helps students find online mba programs to fit their needs.