Succeeding in a college class isn’t always just about the grades. Being able to walk away knowing you developed a positive and lasting relationship with your professor is a sign of accomplishment as well. Creating such a rapport with this person can be very beneficial to the rest of your college career in addition to your future as a young professional. You may also want to check out this information on myths to avoid about college professors.
But how do you go about this? How can you make sure to stand out amongst your peers and be the one student that really impresses that professor? No huge gesture is necessary; it’s more about a series of baby steps that gradually build up to grant you that esteemed reputation.
Sit in the front row: It’s not that sitting somewhere in the middle or toward the back will give the professor a bad impression of you, but sitting in front is a guaranteed way of letting them know you actually care. Sitting in the front row shows a professor that you are comfortable participating and have no desire to hide from class involvement. Plus, you are more likely to be a memorable face if you are so prominently placed up close. It will be far easier to hear and see new material as well, not to mention you will be seen as setting a good example for the rest of the class. Professors always appreciate a leader in the class who can set high standards for the rest of the students. The professor will certainly take note of your initiative and keep it in mind when he or she comes across your name later on.
Ask questions: In class, after class, through email – wherever, whenever. Just ask them. In addition to this clearly being a good idea anyway to help move along your progress in the class, it will prove to the professor that you are actually taking an interest in the subjects being covered. Any student can listen attentively and try to figure things out later on their own, but students with real eagerness to grasp the concepts as quickly as possible like to get their questions asked as they pop up. Don’t be shy about raising your hand and expressing your confusion about a topic; odds are you are probably getting other students’ inquiries taken care of as well. Professors like to see students who are truly curious about the subject matter and who want to guarantee an understanding of it in a timely manner. These types of students will stick out in a professor’s mind faster than others will. Here are some great tips on how to participate in a class discussion that you may also want to check out.
Visit during Office Hours: Due to the randomness of the college schedule, all professors must set aside a regular time for students to visit them in their offices. Although you may be tired, busy, or just plain lazy, you should definitely make time to see your professor during this designated time. Especially since most students don’t take advantage of this opportunity, you just showing up will leave a very positive mark with your professor. More importantly, this is a fantastic time to be at ease with your professor and have a comfortable conversation. This is a great chance for you to share your thoughts about the class, your concerns with certain assignments, and just get a better of understanding of who your professor is and what they expect of their students in general. If the two of you really end up getting along, this may turn into a solid networking opportunity and serve as the first big step into the desired rapport you have been hoping for.
Inquire about how you can improve: This is something that can be done preferably within office hour visits. There is almost always room for you to do better in a class, and students are striving to do better more often than not. While undergoing marathon study sessions and consulting with your peers are helpful ideas, why not go straight to the source? Showing your professor a genuine concern you have for your grade will make a huge impression that is very likely to help you significantly. On top of getting you on the perfect path to achieving your desired grade, this will make the professor understand that you are treating this class as more than just a course to pass – you want it to reflect your best work. Professors will happily recognize this kind of extra effort and remember it later on in the semester when looking at your work. Moreover, your journey will resonate with them as the class wraps up, providing them with that great impression you were hoping to leave. Here are some great tips to check out on the best study habits.
As you go through your classes, don’t forget how helpful your professors can really be. If you put in the effort, they will typically match it and become a great source of mentorship for you. If all goes well, this mentorship will last long past the ending of the class. This is one of the many academic opportunities in college that you won’t want to see slip away!