Whether you’re a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior, you might be determined to have a personal relationship with your college professors. You don't want to be another nameless face in the classroom. If you want to stand out instead of blending in, here are seven tips to get to know your college professor.
1. Sit in the Front of the Class
I used to sit in the back of the class because I didn't want to be noticed by my professors. My attitude changed as I got closer to graduating and I began making a conscious effort to sit closer, which also improved my concentration. If you want to get noticed by your professors, choose a seat closest to the front. With so many students in the classroom, a professor might not notice everyone in class, but he'll notice those sitting in front.
2. Participate in Class
If your college classes are mostly lectures, there may not be an opportunity to participate. If your professor does ask questions, make sure you have an active role in these discussions. Come to each class prepared by doing your homework or reading the study material in advance. If you participate in every class – at least once – your professor will recognize your face and get to know your name.
3. Volunteer Your Time
Some professors seek student volunteers. This is an excellent way to gain extra credit or work experience, and it’s also an additional way to get to know your professor better. Working with your professor outside the classroom can provide an invaluable learning experience.
4. Take Advantage of Their Office Hours
Many college professors have office hours where students can come in and talk about their concerns — whether it’s grades or issues in the classroom. Don't think you’re a burden. Most professors are interested in the well-being of their students, and they're willing to give their time and get to know their students.
5. Join Organizations
Your professor may be the head of an organization on campus. This can be a club, honor society, etc. If you want to get to know a professor better, consider joining an organization that he or she heads up.
6. Ace Your Tests
If you want to get noticed by your professor, be a stellar student. When your professor is grading papers, he'll likely come across a lot of students who don’t give their best. If you’re a good student and acing all your tests, your professor will take notice.
7. Be Polite
Even if your professor mostly lectures and there isn't a lot of class participation, you can get to know him by being polite. When you come into class, don't walk past your teacher. Speak and say, “hello” or “good morning.” If possible, arrive to class a few minutes earlier. If your professor also arrives early, there might be time for one or two minutes of small talk.
Getting to know a professor can be tricky, especially if there are a lot of students in your class and there isn’t much time to pick your professor’s brain. The above tips can help you get to know your professor on a personal level and build a stronger student-teacher relationship. What are other tips for getting to know your college professor?