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How to Stand Out to Your Professor (In a Good Way)

The college classroom environment is different than what most people may have experienced in high school: different teaching styles, different expectations, different class structures, and different participation requirements. However, here at St. Lawrence and many other small liberal arts schools, the strong professor to student ratio allows the professor to notice individuals as well as their behaviors. Because of this, it is important to show your engagement and enthusiasm – it could make all the difference in your final grade!

-Don’t be on your phone.

-Go to office hours often!

-Compare your schedule to the syllabus and let them know of any conflicts ahead of time and always communicate if or when you’re going to miss a class.

-Look at them while they are speaking.

-Actually go to class.

-Make an effort to get to know them as a person and not just as a professor.

-If it is writing intensive, bring them drafts before the assignment is actually due (unless they specifically say otherwise!).

-Take active notes.

-Be engaged and participate.

-Ask informed questions.

-Say ‘thank you’ at the end of each class.

-Keep in touch even after the course ends! Whether it was something you learned in their class appeared in another context or you saw something that you thought might contribute to their lesson plans for future classes, tell them! They’ll be happy to know their class was meaningful to you and who knows, this professor might become your advisor or a mentoring figure for you later on.


(Photos: Wise Geek, Great Plans College)

Hi! I am Colby Hoffman, a Boston-born Campus Correspondent at St. Lawrence University located in Canton, New York. I am in the Class of 2020 and am pursuing a major in Communications with a minor in Sociology. Aside from running our chapter, I am also a member of the Women's Lacrosse Team, a content strategist on the University's Social Media Team, the Alumni Relations Chair of Delta Delta Delta Sorority, and an Ambassador & Tour Guide in our Admissions Office! In my free time, I enjoy going for walks around our beautiful campus, hanging out with friends over good food, researching travel destinations, and drinking iced coffee.
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