It’s mid semester and you’re 90 percent sure that your teacher still has no idea what your name is.
Or maybe you’re sitting in the back of the classroom realizing that you have already skipped more classes than you’ve attended. What the heck is a two tailed t-test, anyway?
Sounds a like scholastics version of a knock-off Pokémon. Whatever your situation, don’t panic. Luckily, whether you need a little boost in your GPA or need references for grad school, here are a few tips on how to get your professor to notice you (and hopefully get them to like you too).
Actually go to office hours Show some interest know the basics, be nice, don’t be demanding.
This is hands down one of the least utilized tools in getting some one-on-one attention from the professor. While most of the professors have office hours, it is becoming a trend for them to only offer them by request. “
I don’t have office hours except by appointment, if they come in and make the effort I am much more likely to remember their name,” said Nancy Silva, a psychology professor at California State University-Stanislaus.
Some of us are spoiled with all of the classes we are in love with, but the rest of us are still not off the hook in terms of trying to gain rapport with our professors.
“If the student has genuine and deep interest in the subject matter that makes me think ‘yes this person is going to represent my profession.’ If they’re excited about the subject, I am automatically more connected to that student,” Silva said.
Know if they are the psychology professor with an emphasis in perception or if it is in clinical work.
This also applies to homework/test help: try to find specific questions that the professor isn’t sick of answering. “One way students don’t want to stand out…is by asking their instructors questions about information that is readily available in the syllabus or textbook,” said Jill Tolles, communications professor at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Just because professors usually maintain somewhat of a professional attitude in the classroom, it doesn’t mean that they don’t notice things going on besides the lecture in the classroom, or even body language.
Negative students are usually not looked upon favorably by professors. “Bottom line: it would be nice if those students weren’t even there,” Silvia said.
Remember, professors are people too. You roll into office hours feeling flustered after an extra-long line at Panda Express and plop yourself down into a chair, demanding to have a recap of the Pythagorean Theorem.
Or you email them six times in 10 minutes and get frustrated when they take more than an hour to respond. Tolles is a mother and a political advocate for education when she is not teaching.
When it comes to students having obvious academic errors and being demanding, she had an obvious answer to how she felt. “As a friend of mine would say, ‘Ain’t nobody got time for that!’” said Tolles.
Afton Neufeld studies public relations. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.