We wish you all a Very Happy St. Valentines Day, 2014!

So we may all gain a better understanding of the professor / student relationship, we are exploring some situations, When College Students Say… We Think…

We realize that when students say these things, they’re not usually saying it in the way that we hear it. These are moments when my mind is racing through five possible ways to answer.

We encourage our teaching colleagues to maybe re-think how you are hearing these questions and to rethink how you might respond to your student.StudentCaring

STUDENT:  What do I have to do to get an ‘A’ in your class?

What we think…

  • I’ve already told you! It is in the syllabus.
  • Exactly what do I have to do to get an ‘A’ so I don’t have to do anything additional?
  • The grade is the most important thing to me.
  • I wish I could hear, “What can I learn?” and “What can you teach me?”
  • The student may be thinking, “I really want to do do well!”

The student may be thinking:

  • I really need a 4.0 so I can get into graduate school.
  • I’m and international student and my scholarship is tied to how well I do, if I get a ‘B’ or ‘C’ I may be deported.

STUDENT:  Can I have a Do-Over?

What we think…

  • If you have 40 people in your class, it is likely that everyone would like to do a little bit better. The question for me really is, “Can all 40 of us take the exam again?”
  • We feel a sense of equity for the entire class.

The student may be thinking:

  • I didn’t do enough to prepare for the test.
  • I’m not clear on what it is I should be doing in the class.
  • I’m not clear on how to meet the expectation of the course. (That’s a great question to ask! That is what we hope our students will ask.)

I think that there is not a person out there, who called themselves and educator, who does not live in fear of grade inflation.

Sometimes, a student will have a very legitimate reason for a do-over (medical emergency) to be allowed.

STUDENT:  Is it okay if I turn in my work to you after the deadline?

What we think…

  • Sure, no problem! NOT.
  • There is a good reason it is known as a DEAD line.


Right or control click here to download the MP3 of the Podcast.

 Please share your opinions on this topic, the world is listening … 

We recommend an excellent book on this topic by our friend, Ellen Bremen M.A.: Say This NOT That, to Your Professor.

We need your feedback so we may continue to fulfill our mission statement and help students, the world over.

Thank you!

Daniel & David