Dealing With a Bad Professor

Dealing with a bad professor is not easy. But there are a couple of things that might help you on the way. Here, we will talk about how to avoid bad professors, whether there is a way to deal with their behavior, and what your options are. 

Due Diligence

All of us were unfortunate at one point to run into a bad professor. But one of the main problems you might encounter is people who just talk about a professor being bad. That doesn’t necessarily mean that it is the truth. What you need to do is try and find out if their claims have any basis in reality and not someone’s imagination. 

It’s not rare to hear someone talking bad about a teacher when, in reality, they hadn’t studied enough and failed a class fair and square. That is why you should remember due diligence. You need to know for certain that a professor is bad and that rumors are not just that. 

One of the ways to understand it is to talk to as many people as you can. Try to find older students that can share their experiences with you. There is a chance that you might hear: “Oh, yeah, the professor is great! There are just some students angry because they failed the class.” 

But even if the rumors are right and the professor is as bad as they say, you still need as much info as possible. Your goal is to figure out whether their behavior is something you can deal with. All of us are different and unique, and what might be too much for someone could be normal for you.

Stick It Out for a While

If you already started the class, try hanging on for a bit. You don’t want to drop the class at the first sign of trouble. As always, you need to ensure that people are right when they claim that someone is bad. Unfortunately, there is a chance that you’ll have to test it yourself. Of course, we don’t say that you should stay in class no matter what, and that abuse is normal. It never is, and there are no excuses for it. 

Teachers who act like bullies or abusers need to be stopped, and they need to understand that trying to toughen someone will not work. Their job is to pass the knowledge onto their students, not act as if they were their parents. 

So, what you need to do here is to try and collect evidence. If this is a professor from hell, you’ll need proof. Rumors are not enough for anything, and the only way to stop this kind of behavior is with solid evidence. 

With enough proof, you might be able to make a change. Try talking to other faculty members and inform them that what that teacher is doing is not normal and that you are not ok with that. 

Ideally, they will solve the problem without involving you, and you can continue with your classes. However, there is a chance that you will have to fight for your rights, so be prepared for that as well. Naturally, if this seems too much for you, you can always back off. As long as your life and education won’t suffer, there is nothing wrong with avoiding unnecessary fights. 

Have a Talk With Your Professor

One of the things you need to understand is that there are many different teaching styles, and just because one is not for you, it doesn’t mean it’s bad. Needless to say, we aren’t talking about torturing students and abusing power. 

One of the things you can always do is have a talk with your professor. Try to see the world through their eyes. There might be a reasonable explanation for their behavior, and all of us make mistakes — but we aren’t always aware that we’re making them. That is why it’s a great idea to try and understand their train of thought. 

There is a chance that they don’t see their behavior or teaching methods as anything wrong. And if none of the students complained before, there is no way for them to know that their audience isn’t satisfied. 

The most common reason for the misunderstanding is a lack of communication. There is a chance that they will listen to you and try to change their teaching methods. Not only will that solve your problems, but it might solve them for many other people. 

The only thing you need to do is to be polite, honest, and respectable. You won’t get far if you storm into their office and start shouting and waving your hands around. Furthermore, if you have any requests or demands, be sure that they are tactical and reasonable. The art of making a deal is that both parties need to be satisfied, and wishing for something unreasonable will leave you with nothing.  

If you don’t know how to talk to your professor, you better read this Lifehack article first.

If You Need to Report

The worst-case scenario is that your teacher is just a dick. Maybe they love feeling good, hurting others, and abusing their power. The best thing in such cases is that they are not above the law and that this kind of behavior is not tolerable. However, accusing someone out of the blue will achieve nothing. As you can probably expect, every teacher ever got accused of something. There are students that are unreasonable, and they will blame others for their failures. 

That means you need evidence. Document everything and prepare and be ready for what is to come. If they are such a bad person, they won’t go down without a fight. One of the things you should do is follow the chain of command and work your way up until you find someone willing to help you. 

You need to talk to people in charge, and you need to be reasonable. That means that you might want to avoid social media at first. You won’t want to start a lynch mob, and it might not show you in the best light. 

The only way to put an end to this kind of behavior is to be smart. So, talk to people in charge, for example, principals, deans, or anyone above the abusive teacher. Once they understand how serious it is, they will have to get involved and help you with this issue.