Dear Horrible Professors

The absolute worst thing that a professor can say on the first day of class is, “I’m not your typical professor. I don’t want to bore you by lecturing the whole class.” I’m all for making class interesting, but I am not paying you to entertain me. I’m paying you to teach me. So when you make class “fun” and “different” it better be for the sake of education, because if it’s anything else you are wasting my time.

Three of my professors this semester have opened up class with the line above. In my operations management class, instead of teaching us the material in the chapter, he pulled up online practice questions and one by one read us multiple choice questions and had us answer them. We hadn’t even gone over the chapter yet! Thank you, for reading every question and every answer, because I couldn’t do this myself. Oh yeah, I forgot I don’t know how to study by myself either. I need to be spoon fed because I’m not a grown adult who can think and study on my own time.

Another highlight of my week is in my advanced corporate finance class. This class is comprised of solely studying case studies. No new material is taught; we just analyze these cases (it just sounds stupid explaining it). He split us into groups (“I love group projects and group assignments!” Said no one ever.) and proceeded to ask us fairly difficult questions about our case study. Many of the questions addressed material that our group hadn’t even heard of before, but we managed to BS our way through our answer. The team after us wanted some more clarification, though. The girl said, “We were a little confused–” and then my professor interrupted and said “Stop right there. This isn’t a good start. If you were ever to say those words, the marketers, investors, and managers would eat you alive.” He continued to berate her and then finished by saying, “So start over and answer the question.”

I love classes where I can’t ask questions. Oh, I guess I could ask a question, if I wanted to be humiliated in front of the entire class of 65 students and get no answer at all. I love professors that are so willing to help students when they don’t understand things the first time. Especially since we hadn’t been taught anything.

I also love egotistical, self-absorbed professors. My finance professor is also really good at talking about himself. It’s nice to know a little bit about my professor’s background, but the key word is little. I don’t care that you got a Louisville Slugger engraved with your name on it. I don’t care how many companies you were a CEO for, or how much money you’ve made through various investments. If it’s relevant to the material, please share. It’s nice to have applicable, real-world examples. If it doesn’t though, then I don’t care. You’re wasting my time.


I love spending thousands of dollars on professors who fail to do what they are payed to do: educate. I am so peeved, so aggravated, so tired of wasting my time and money on people that don’t deserve either.

What a frustrating semester, and it’s only the second week of classes. I have no motivation to do anything in classes with terrible professors. I don’t want to go to class, or read the material, or teach myself everything because the professor can’t. So far at UMKC, I’ve been pretty fortunate with really great professors, but I guess it’s catching up to me because this semester I hit the jackpot with the worst professors ever.

Shoot me now.

6 thoughts on “Dear Horrible Professors”

  1. Professors are typically there to do research; teaching is secondary. Fortunately, you’re not alone with that kind of experience. In fact, I know many classmates who complained for similar reasons. They try to get creative with assignments “to make the class fun,” and end up overworking students without any regard for their time. It has become a habit for me to occasionally write on evaluation forms on professors’ main occupation, which is to research and not to teach when warranted. Too bad they’re tenured, which means evaluations are essentially useless. :/

    Stories of our lives. So sorry that you had to hit the negative jackpot this semester. Let us hope that things will get better.

    1. I understand that many professors are there primarily for research, however, it is still part of their job. We all have parts of our jobs that we don’t like, but that doesn’t mean we can do it half-heartedly and not care how it affects other people. If they didn’t want to or couldn’t teach, they shouldn’t have taken the job.

  2. I know how you feel. I’m going back to school to finish my engineering degree I started almost a decade ago and I feel like everything has changed in that time. Last semester I had a professor who handed us a syllabus with no dates on it, just a list of major quizzes and tests, then would inform us the class beforehand if we had a test next time. It was a Monday/Wednesday class, so that gave us about two days to study, though most of us had classes on Tuesdays as well. After the entire class brought it to the attention of the dean he started giving us 1 week of notice, but then would include content on the tests we hadn’t even covered. We ended up having to study a chapter ahead to be prepared. I don’t think he’s teaching anymore, but it’s so frustrating when you’re spending thousands on tuition and not getting a fair shake. It’s not like a sweater, you can’t take your education back and ask for it to be replaced. Hope things in your class straighten out!

  3. I’ve only ran into this teacher/professor only once, and luckily in high school, twice in different levels of math. I failed both classes, because he was that bad as a teacher and all he talked about was his animals, how bad children/teens were, and golf. Like I cared. It didn’t help me focus on the material and the fact that I have trouble with math didn’t help at all. He was a terrible professor and I’m glad I didn’t see him again, nor paid for him. I’m sorry you had to deal with this girl. It can’t be easy to have a professor that doesn’t really care. :(

  4. So far, I don’t think I have encountered this problem, what so ever. But, I do know that these types of professor do exists. An acquaintance of mine stated that her Organic Chemistry professor will make you sound stupid in front of the class. This same professor will literally get pissed at you for asking a question related to the material being taught. I can’t remember the name for the life of me, but she stated to me that this professor has an A rating on I’m kind of shocked at that too.

    I do know that my professors introduced themselves on the first day of class, just like we would so that we can get to know our fellow colleagues. I’m not sure how it is with your college, but there are some professors that refuse to lecture about the material and there are some that will. Just like I told Tristan that there will be homework Nazi’s. In fact, Tristan has two this semester. In English and in Math. Ah well, what can you do? Just try to take it with a grain of salt.

  5. Oh, I can relate to this post! Don’t get me wrong, I love my university and have had the opportunity to be taught by some of the best professors, but I have also encountered the worst (much like the ones you described!). I had this professor who would only talk about himself and how we, his students, would not succeed in finance because we’re not as awesome as he is. It doesn’t help that he never taught us ANYTHING at all! Well, all his students gave him a low rating on the evaluation, so he got sacked :P

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