Student vs. Faculty Perspective

A common theme amongst these “Students vs. Faculty” posts revolves around situational factors. Most of us don’t side with either the faculty or students exclusively 100% of the time since there are many factors that influence whether we choose to be “good” students or simply blend into the crowd.

I find that when I’m in a class that is relevant and important to my major, I go above and beyond to meet and exceed the class expectations. I want to stand out in these classes, so in these cases I want to identify with the faculty and come across as a mature, dedicated, and ambitious student who separates herself from the common herd. Whether it be going to office hours regularly or putting in that extra effort each homework assignment, I’ll do what’s expected and more to distance myself from the rest of the class even though it means pushing beyond my comfort zone. ¬†I can also tell that when I truly find myself siding with the faculty, it’s in those classes where I’ll choose taking traditional handwritten notes over using a laptop. ¬†Handwritten notes > laptop use is seriously becoming “The Michigan Difference!”

On the other hand, in those classes which aren’t of utmost importance to my major at U of M (i.e. those mandatory additional natural science/humanities/etc credits), I don’t put in the extra effort to stand out from the crowd. I’m guilty of that, but also ok with it. I’ll still strive for an A and do everything that’s required to do well in the class, but I’m more likely to side with other students in these types of classes. It’s not because I’m a slacker, but because I find more value in putting extra effort into things that will benefit me more in the future.

3 thoughts to “Student vs. Faculty Perspective”

  1. I agree that no student strictly falls into one category of siding with the students or the faculty. If you did, you would most likely be alienating yourself from the other group which would hurt you either socially or academically. Personally, however, I always put my relationship with the faculty above my relationship with students. The truth is that for me and many students, you come to classes to learn knowledge beneficial to your future, obtain a grade and eventually get a degree. I find the less distracted I am in class, the information I am likely to get out of it.

  2. …continuing my post lol. Another reason I find I often try to work on my relationship with faculty more than I do with students is because in every class of mine I see students shopping online, texting, looking at facebook or doing something else that is disruptive. I can’t personally understand why you get up in the morning to sit in a classroom if you’re going to do something else other than learning. I also find this disrespectful to the professor teaching. I do not see the benefit of trying to build a relationship with someone in my class if they have no interest in taking the class seriously. All students and faculty know that there are some professors who take their classes more seriously than others but for the most part, they do their best to try to make the class helpful, challenging, and interesting. I think it’s only fair that I show them the same respect and that usually means building a relationship with them.

  3. I feel the same way in the sense that I have a lot of respect for my professors, and I share their passion for learning.

    However, I’m not really sure whom I identify with.
    When I’m sitting in a big lecture or walking through the crowded diag, I rarely think of myself in relation to anyone around me. I don’t know if that makes me sound self-absorbed…what I mean is that everyone seems to be busy living their own lives, so it’s easier to focus on the differences than distance me from the students around me than to notice the ways in which we’re similar, and to feel a sense of community. A lecture tends to feel like a regular appointment that we all, students and professors, agree upon for selfish reasons – to fulfill the duties of a job, to fulfill credit requirements, etc. This is not to say that I’ve never had an interesting, intelligent, likeable professor in this context – almost all of my professors have been great, but there’s just something about being in a crowd that makes me feel isolated.
    In smaller classes, however, I have an easier time seeing that I have a lot in common with both students and professors. Because I can see faces and hear voices more clearly, I feel more of a connection to individuals within a smaller group, even if they voice opinions I don’t necessarily agree with.

    From this perspective, it’s hard to say whether I identify more with students or faculty. I never think of myself in opposition to either of these groups, but it’s not until I get the chance to know people on an individual basis that I can feel any semblance of community.

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