10 Questions that Annoy Professors

With the new year just underway and a new semester approaching, I thought it would be ideal to provide some “pet peeves” to students regarding their questions. Although one of our primary job as professors is to answer questions to the best of our ability, there are some questions that make us clinch our teeth for dear life. I asked professors near and far to send me their “pet peeves” when it comes to student questions, such as “Are we having class on Friday?” So in David Letterman style, here is a list of the top 10 questions professors don’t like to hear.

Top 10 questions professors don’t like to hear.

10. Will we have class the Friday before break?

9. How many points is this assignment worth?

8. Will we be getting out of class early today?

7. I have an F. Can I complete some extra credit?

6. I know this is last minute, but….

5. Could you tell me how many absences I have in this class?

4. Will you/do you drop the lowest quiz (or any other assignment) grade?

3. I was absent. Did I miss anything?

2. Am I passing this class?

1. Will this or how much of this will be on the test?

Although I could make some sarcastic remarks for each of these, I think the point is clear-respect the time and effort we put into creating handouts, syllabi, etc. that answer these questions by reading the forms. Of course there are some phrases I could add in as well, but that will have to be another post. Many thanks to those who submitted their “pet peeves.”

Of course the ordering is my own, but what would you change? Any others you would add? If you’ve asked any of these questions, why?

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “10 Questions that Annoy Professors

  1. ksburns71

    How about, “how many pages should this be?”

  2. Pingback: 10 Phrases that Annoy Professors « PRactical Issues

  3. Definitely #3. Lately I’m getting a part two to this one – “Can I have your notes?”. Um, no.

  4. LOL! I am shaking my head reading this list. Hey, it reminds me of a funny Tweeter; follow him @annoyedPRprof !

    • uandrews

      I am currently following @annoyedPRprof . He actually RT this post. I think his followers enjoyed a good laugh.

  5. How about this one for part two – “I don’t have many points for participation. What do I do to make that up?”

  6. Dr. Bey-Ling Sha

    This list is right on target. Even worse than the stated #3 is when the question is phrased as “did I miss anything IMPORTANT?” Sometimes, I just want to reply, “Oh no, of course not, silly! When I saw that you were absent from the 175-person class, I made sure to talk only about non-essential items during the entire 75-minute lecture!”

    • uandrews

      Thanks for commenting. Looking at the responses I’ve received, I’m thinking #3 should probably have been #1. When students ask me that question, I just respond with “class” and walk away. One of these days they’ll get it.

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