If there’s one way to start off the semester on the wrong foot, it’s taking a class with a bad teacher. Even though school has been underway for one week, many students may be worrying about that ranking their professor got on Rate My Professor. But, is that ranking a good measure to predict how good a teacher will be?
Rate My Professor is a website that allows students to do as the title suggests, rate your professor. Any student can visit the site and rate their professor or can search for a professor and see how they are ranked by their fellow peers.
Each teacher earns a ranking score for each category of overall quality, level of difficulty, and even a hotness level depicted as a chili pepper. Along with every review, there is a list of comments where students can give an in depth description about the teacher.
Adams Dodd, communications senior, says that whenever he registers for classes, he has Rate My Professor up on his computer.
“I look at Wolverine Track as the bible and Rate My Professor as the abridged notes when it comes to finding a good teacher,” he said.
Just as with anything you may review on the internet, there isn’t much of an incentive and Rate My Professor doesn’t give any kind of incentive to give a review of teachers. So why would a student want to rate their professor?
Communication senior Lexi Lewis says that she would rank a teacher using the site but doesn’t because there is no incentive for doing so.
“If they gave some sort of gift card for giving a review, I would definitely rate a teacher,” she said.
When looking through the ratings of teachers, especially those with a lower grade, one finds there is a fair mix of very high scores and very low scores. Such comments range from, “Take this class, this teacher is amazing!” to “This teacher is horrible. His lectures don’t really help with what you need to know in order to get a good grade. His tests are made to make you fail.”
“I haven’t looked at Rate My Professor in years,” said David “Brother Dave” Scott who teaches in the communication department at UVU. He sees Rate My Professor as an unreliable source as most students who use that site either loved the class or hated it.
“What I wish we did here at UVU, is to have the students fill out the classroom evaluations in class on paper. When students do that rather than on their own time, you tend to get better results,” Scott said.
As you begin this new semester, don’t worry about that rank your teacher may have gotten. Like any movie review, everyone sees things differently and that teacher may turn out to be a chili-pepper teacher for you.