“You remember that, Johnson” is Katie Johnson’s survival guide to Boise State detailing her experiences last year as a first-year freshman from out of state.
It’s midterm season, which means not only are you going to have a test in most of your classes, but it’s time to pick your classes for next semester. On one hand, meeting with an advisor can be helpful and can definitely keep you on a four-year track. On the other hand, there is something to be said for taking professors, not classes. Not to say an advisor won’t tell you this and wouldn’t be helpful when trying to choose professors. What I do mean is if you go into choosing classes with an open mind about the actual course content and try to focus on finding good professors, it could shape your whole semester.
Specifically, the most interesting course can be ruined if it’s not taught by a professor whose teaching style is something you’re in sync with. I know there are some professors I just can’t handle. That’s not to say they aren’t perfectly adequate professors, I’m just not a student who can appreciate their particular style. One of my biggest pet peeves is overly homework-happy professors. I can practically hear my own rant: Don’t they know I have a life outside of school?
Usually a professor’s “Rate My Professor” reviews tell me if he or she is someone I could really enjoy taking a class from. And I am a huge advocate of reading peer reviews of professors. Nobody knows a professor better than his or her students.
In turn, if there is a professor you work really well under, take as many classes from him or her as possible. Knowing you love a professor’s teaching style and knowing you will enjoy his or her class means you are almost guaranteed a better grade. Actually wanting to go to class is a pretty hearty motivator for doing well in a class. When I find a professor I love, I take as many classes from him or her as possible—even if I don’t necessarily enjoy the content of the class itself. Never underestimate the ability of a really fantastic teacher. I know I always recommend communication professor Marty Most because of my experiences in his class.
It’s simple. Always take into consideration who is teaching the class when you add it to your schedule. So I will say it again: Take professors, not classes. And as I talked about earlier in the year when I discussed the college timezone, be honest with yourself. If you aren’t a morning person, avoid morning classes. If you don’t do well with attendance policies, avoid professors who aren’t the most flexible.