Our View: Rate your professor, for real

DKS Editors

At the close of each semester, the university distributes professor evaluations to each class in order to gauge how well a professor is doing his or her job.

Almost all of us have experienced it. The professor exits the room and a neutral party, normally a fellow student, distributes the evaluations.

Most, not all, students hurry through the questionnaire, filling in the bubbles as quickly as possible in a rush to get out of class, giving up one of the most important opportunities we’re given as students: the opportunity to provide feedback.

A Daily Kent Stater reporter recently researched what the university does with those Scantron forms once they’re turned in. She found that not only do professors receive the data based on what students answered, but respective colleges also use this information in determining each professor’s future. If a professor is up for a promotion or tenure, that college will examine the data based on evaluations you filled out at the end of the course.

So, if you couldn’t stand your professor, thought he or she was disrespectful and unfair and you then rush through that evaluation without being honest, you’ve abandoned your opportunity to change how that professor teaches or maybe whether he or she teaches at all.

The same is true if you absolutely loved that professor. Do him or her a favor; let that college know.

One professor of mathematical science told the reporter some of her evaluations revealed she had been playing favorites with those students who weren’t catching on, so she made a conscious effort to change that.

These evaluations can alter how future students experience that course and who they experience it with. That matters, so when you’re handed those series of questions, be honest and thorough.

You really could improve a peer’s education, and hopefully, he or she do the same for you.