From charming personalities to easy A’s, with a click of a mouse and review reads, students can get a preview of a professors’ overall performance.
Online reviews have become common in the decision-making, from product reviews, restaurants ratings to a professors’ scale of hotness. The popular website “ratemyproffesor.com” offers a full description of the local college instructors’ teaching style.
“It’s not a popularity contest, it’s a source of information of what a particular professors’ teaching styles are all about,” said Derrick White, art professor at Tyler Junior College and faculty sponsor of the Art Club, who is rated with a flaming red chili pepper for hotness and a 4.8 out of a 5 for overall teaching quality.
The appearance of a professor is not the only reason students are meticulously selecting their instructors. With pressure to have or maintain a high GPA, temptation to find the easiest way to an A in order to move onto a four-year university makes this website popular
Helpfulness, attractiveness, quality and easiness are some of the categories the professors are rated on from a scale of 0 to 5, including comments of the personal experiences, all of which are done by former students and not handled by colleges.
“At best, the site has the potential to allow professors to get feedback from their students and make certain changes in their course,” said TJ McLemore, English professor and Honors Program coordinator, who has a rating of 3.6 overall quality and a red chili pepper for attractiveness.
“However, we already have a mechanism locally for doing this and it’s the course evaluations,” said McLemore.
These course evaluations, which are completed by students in almost every class each semester, are a two-page straightforward TJC evaluation. The reviews are not publicly published and only used for the college and professors intend, giving
“ratemyprofessor.com” a more anonymous appeal and open for anyone including students to see.
“Any source of information that a student can find out about not only the teacher of the class but the content…before signing up for the class, is a benefit to the student,” White said. “Sometimes taking the right person for a class makes all the difference in the world.”
The Human Resources Department at TJC does not use the postings from the site in the reviewing of employees or hiring process but does see it as a potential tool, according to the Executive Director of Human Resources Kevin Fowler.
“We all use the tools that are available to us,” Fowler said. “Don’t use that as vehicle to be destructive. Use it in a way to be constructive that helps a faculty member understand what they might need to do to be better and more effective.”
The students who rate professors, according to Fowler, are the ones who are extremely happy with the professors or dissatisfied, which makes the review at times hazy.
“It’s human nature, if we are dissatisfied with something, we are more likely to take action and go write something,” said McLemore.
Although the hot chili peppers add value to a professors’ rating, these instructors are less worried about the scale of attractiveness and more in their students’ growth in the subject matter. Yet students are still intrigue by the different classifications for a professor.
“There’s a hotness rating on the teachers!” Katie Rozell, sophomore, Pre-Pharmacy technician said. “I think a lot more people who are actually more serious would go on there to look at what students say.”
The review advice goes both ways, students get the information they need to select their professors and the instructors obtain feedback of their teaching techniques.
By: Belen Casillas