Published

Marie Mitchell
Marie Mitchell
Jeffrey Howells
Jeffrey Howells

Rate My Professors, an unofficial compendium of college students' rankings of their instructors, is the subject of a Flagpole article that quotes Terry College faculty members Marie Mitchell and Jeffrey Howells.

Mitchell, an associate professor in the department of management, said that the website is a good tool for students, although sometimes it doesn't evaluate the instructor as much as the course itself.

“It’s always challenging to teach a class with 300–500 students in a room, because it’s hard to reach everyone,” Mitchell said. “And in those particular classes, I just have to know that the students who do well are not going to go on Rate My Professor and say, ‘She’s great!’” Meanwhile, she notes that “you’re going to get students who aren’t doing incredibly well in class who use [the site] as a sounding board to vent, but hey, that’s their right.”

Howells, a lecturer in the department of management information systems, added that some students may have a hard time accurately rating a professor because they don't yet know the value of course information.

“The issue about students trying to evaluate what’s going on, is they don’t yet have enough information to know whether [the professor] is good or not,” Howells said. He tells his students they won’t understand until two or three years into their career why certain things are important. That being said,if a professor really pisses a student off, that’s not good. No one’s trying to make it so miserable that they can’t stand it.”

The full article is available free online.