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.