(Closed) The overbearing professor

posted 4 years ago in College
Post # 2
5387 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2016

Anonymous1063:  it’s very frustrating for us students!! I’ve only had a couple of professors like this where you learn fairly quickly that you can not state your own opinion without it effecting your grades. I don’t understand the point of us spending thousands only to have your point of view and beliefs shoved down our throats!! 

Post # 4
6015 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: March 2012

Yeah even my college calc teacher was pushing his almost marxist beliefs in class, it was really pathetic how we started off with math and wound up listening to him pontificate about politics.  It was a gift how he did it though.  It is annoying to be putting out so much money and have to just sit there and bide your time until that semester is over and you really don’t learn.  College is supposed to be a place to learn different perspectives about the world and how other people see it.  

I think that if there were more teachers at that level like you…. it would be a much better learning experience.  Keep doing what you are doing and your classes will swell up with people that want a great class.

Post # 5
2024 posts
Buzzing bee

If a student is there for something else, then the professor should stay on track.  On the other hand, I will not allow students to assert that we have (for example) “solved” racism or sexism without delving into the substantial evidence that suggests we have done no such thing.  (Usually the other students themselves begin that process.) There are also ways to do that that don’t involve me simply lecturing at people.  However, I also teach a subject where these issues regularly come up so students have no grounds to wring their hands when these things get discussed.

Post # 6
11619 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

So you’re new and you’ve already tattled on your colleagues to people in charge who did not take action, and you’re looking for advice? you’ve already told people. They didn’t do anything. So it might be you or none of your business. You’re not helping yourself at this point. 

Here’s the thing. From the language you used originally, it sounded to me like you objected to the specific political beliefs being espoused and not the manner in which people who are above you and have been doing this job for longer were conducting themselves. the language was a give away.

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by  BalletParker.
  • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by  BalletParker.
Post # 7
92 posts
Worker bee

As a student this drives me insane. In my first semester of university I took a philosophy class and the professor was absolutely wonderful. I got a long great with him, and we had MANY long disussions about important political issues like the ones you raised. The funny thing is he was actually the exact opposite of what you described, and tried to get me to do most of the talking. Also even though we agreed on most issues we would play the devil’s advocate to continue the discussion. Then in my second semester I took a criminology class, with a professor who was a very kind man. However he spent an entire three hour lecture trying to convince us that we have to condone the caste system in India because is resembles fuedelism in medieval Europe. There was no need for this in the course, as it had nothing to do with what we were studying, and was honestly extremely frustrating. He wouldn’t listen to any of the conserns we were raising or our opinions.

Post # 9
1232 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Some of my fav professors were the ones who went off on tangents about other subjects. If I admired someone for, say, obviously knowing a lot about Chinese art or something, it often was really interesting to hear them talk about their feelings on the current political state of China.

anyway, professors are intellectuals and talking about their ideas and experiences is what they do. College is all about being exposed to new ideas and ways of thinking. A 19 y.o. is capable of listening to a professor and deciding for his/herself: do I agree? Does this match other opinions and experiences I’ve heard/read about? in other words, make a critical evaluation about the professor’s diatribe, not just blindly agree. Discussion and debate are also good and useful in a learning environment, but you know, it’s ok to just shut up and listen sometimes too.

so, in my opinion, there is no need whatsoever to report these professors. 

Post # 10
2024 posts
Buzzing bee

ohnatto:  +1 It’s so hard to know when to take claims of OMG PROFESSOR OPPRESHUN! seriously, because there are some professors who are obnoxious, but I’d say a solid 95% of the complaints I hear to this effect would be better phrased as, “This smart person has challenged my worldview and won’t just agree with me, and this has never happened to me before and I don’t know what to do!”

Of course the insipid “everyone’s opinion/all sides is valid” culture of discourse contributes to this disastrous phenomenon.  It’s a shock for students to learn that this is not true.

Post # 11
1890 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

Anonymous1063:  “oppression” in your opinion is a professor rambling at a student for 20-30 minutes? Is the student forbidden from speaking up in return? Is there retailiation if/when the student does speak up? Because I don’t really see oppression from what you’ve stated. I’m sure it’s annoying but unless the students are facing tangible negative consequences (grades suffering, etc) I don’t really see a problem.

Post # 12
14495 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

There are videos online all over YouTube of professors doing this in classroom settings. It’s wrong. One of the purposes of college is to get the students to explore their own beliefs and find their own paths not indoctrinate students into the professors personal political agenda. Unfortunately, it’s so hard to find a college or university that doesn’t encourage this behavior by professors. My step son has been searching for such a college and we’ve done many exasperating campus visits. 

Post # 13
2488 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

What do the students think?

Post # 14
2024 posts
Buzzing bee

There’s “personal agendas” and then there’s “insisting on an evidence-based world” or “insisting on students not slurring their classmates who are women, students of color, LGBTQ, etc.” 

There are far too many people in this world who confuse the latter two for the former and I have no time for them. 

Post # 15
226 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

As a student, I have experienced a couple professors like this. It is extremely frustrating and I feel like I am forced to conform to their beliefs/opinions in order to pass the course. When the right to independent thought is being removed, it gets really frustrating. I am still not finished with school, but I have learned to adjust my work accordingly to professors like that and blow it off once the course is over. There was only one course where I challenged my professor and received an A, at the end of the course she still made it quite clear that she did not like me. 

It is not just college level where this is happening, though. Last year my son came home (2nd grader) asking me who I had voted for in the last presedential election they were learning about presidents at the time). I told him, and he went off about how I should have voted for “Bark” Obama because he is the best. I asked him why he thought that and he responded with “Well, his wife is pretty and he likes kids.” Valid points for a 7 year old. I could not get into a political debate with sweet young son, but it really made me question just what he was hearing/being told in school. 

I am all for hearing the opinions and beliefs of others, especially when they have valid points and solid reasoning. However, I do not appreciate those opinions being forced down my throat. 

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