Students grade teachers on Rate My Professors


Shawn Rohlin, associate professor for economics, teaches his principles of microeconomics class on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015.

Paige Verma

For some Kent State students, scheduling is a breeze. For others, it’s a stressful time.

The idea of picking a professor is something that some strategically plan while others just take classes with whomever they can, in whatever time slot best fits.  

Sophomore accounting major Lukas Shupe,said he always looks up his professors before scheduling his classes.

“I go on Google and type in the professor and it usually takes me to Rate My Professors,” Shupe said. is a review site for students. The site was founded in 1999 and was first called It was changed in 2001 to its current name.  

On the site, students can comment and rate their professors on a scale from one to five, one being the worst rating and five being the best.

Along with the overall ratings, students can leave comments discussing the teaching style in a specific class or their feelings about the professor or class in general.

“During DKS (Destination Kent State), they picked everything for you, and the girl I was working with only used,” said Aron Olaffoster, freshman early childhood education major.

“One professor for an education class I have is really invested, and I like directness and teachers that care,” Olaffoster said when describing a professor who was rated “hard” on the site.

Professors with good ratings also include good comments.

David Foster, assistant professor in journalism and mass communication, received a high rating on the site with an overall rating of 4.8 out of 5.

“I think I have the luxury of having classes that talk about fun things, like human interest stories and basics of journalism,” Foster said.

Foster explained how professors now have to compete with technology and face greater distractions, so keeping students engaged is what he aims to do to avoid and overcome those distractions.

“I am really passionate about what I teach, and I think most instructors that are, that translates into the classroom experience,” Foster said.

Rate My Professors is not used by all students. Hunter Brancifort, freshman exploratory major, said he has never heard of the site.

“I play softball here, so I have to be on a certain schedule, so sometimes it just happens to be class time and I have to go with whatever,” Brancifort said.

For some, not many professors are offered for the classes they need in their major, such as students in the medical field.

Sophomore biology major Robert Woodruff has had a run in with that issue, even though he said he does not use Rate My Professors often.

“When scheduling my classes, I start with my most important class. In pre-med, we’ve only got one or two professors to choose from, so I pick the one I think is the best time spot,” Woodruff said. “If I’ve heard good things about a professor, I try to schedule him in. We don’t have much variation.”

Woodruff had an experience for his organic chemistry class where the professor got poor reviews on Rate My Professors, but he felt the teaching style was good and straight-forward.

“I think (the site) is really biased, personally,” Woodruff says. 

He said it is not bad to check once a schedule is made but to “take it with a grain of salt.”

As much as Rate My Professors is used for students to rate and comment, many professors are also fully aware of the site and how it is used, such as associate professor of economics Shawn Rohlin, who received good ratings on the site.

“Students will wait to take principles of economics to have it with me since it fills up so fast,” Rohlin said.

Rohlin works with his non-math students to make sure they do not fall behind and stay caught up in the course and said he suggests his math- oriented students take his upper-level class where they push through a lot of material.

“I think I’ve been known to be a good teacher for those non-math students,” Rohlin said.