Professors in college are nothing like teachers in high school. There are a lot less rules in college, which means that the way most professors conduct themselves differs from what you’re used to. Here are 10 types of professors you’re bound to run into (and how to deal with them).
The Devil’s Advocate
Most professors don’t intentionally try to antagonize students, but there a few who love doing just that. They enjoy playing the devil’s advocate and getting students fired up about all kinds of controversial topics, and after the heat dies down a bit, they’ll say that they were only acting that way “to open your mind.”
The Disgustingly Attractive One
This is obviously the one class you make a point of never skipping. This professor is unbelievably attractive and charming, so you can’t help but (kind of) pay attention, even if their subject is something as boring as corporate finance. But you’ll soon find that they’re just as tough of graders as anyone else, making you wish you had done more than stare at them during lectures.
You won’t keep in touch with every teacher you have in college, but there will be at least one professor with whom you form a connection and keep in contact after you graduate. This professor gives you career and life advice, and actually cares about what’s going in your life, making them almost like a pseudo-parent to you in your times of need.
The “Cool Guy”
This professor likes to pretend (AKA forget) how much older he is than his students, so he attempts to act like your peer instead of your professor. He’ll chat with you about “The Facebook,” make corny jokes at the beginning of class, and maybe even invite the class out for drinks (if you’re all 21, of course).
The Technologically Challenged One
There’s always at least one professor in their 50s who only knows how to access their email on their computer. As a result, you typically get at least 10 minutes of free time at the beginning of each class while your professor attempts to get the PowerPoint presentation set up (before one of your classmates takes pity and helps them out).
The Bell-to-Bell Lecturer
This professor is the one who starts class at 8:00 a.m. on the dot and won’t let you leave even a minute early. She’s said several times throughout the course that “college students are the only consumers who want less for their money” in an exasperated tone, then hands you a research paper to do over Christmas break.
The Enthusiastic Grad Student
At many large universities, a lot of classes are taught by graduate students. Some of these grad students make it clear that they’d rather be anywhere else, but there are also some who make it their life’s mission to teach you about mitosis. They always come into class acting as though they’ve just downed four cups of coffee, but unfortunately their energy is more annoying than it is inspiring.
The Self-Obsessed One
This teacher is the one who only assigns his own books for the class and who is always badgering the class to attend one of his poetry readings outside of class for extra credit. A day won’t go by without him mentioning one of his many accomplishments, and he’ll often go off on so many tangents about himself that the whole class period is wasted.
The Chronically Lazy One
This professor apparently never got the message that professors are kind of supposed to be role models for students. They are always 10 or 15 minutes late to class, they only give multiple choice tests because they don’t want to grade them, and half the time you do group work in class because they don’t even want to get up and teach.
Most professors will give you an abbreviated, glossed-over version of their personal and professional lives, but every once in a while you’ll find one that acts as though their class is their own personal therapist. You’ll learn about how rough their marriage is and how depressed they are and absolutely nothing about the subject at hand.