No matter what university you attend, you know that one student in that one class who drives everyone absolutely insane. These nerve-wracking students lurk in every single classroom on campus, and — no matter what you do — they never go away. They each have different quirks that push our buttons or make us roll our eyes behind our textbooks. After careful study and observation, I’ve determined these types of students can be sorted into 10 different categories.
- The Hermione Granger
Usually these students lurk in the front of the classroom and their small desks are crowded with textbooks, notepads and freshly sharpened pencils. They always have their assignments done right on time, or way before, and never let their grades sway below 98 percent. More often than not, they unintentionally show everyone up with their class projects and their constantly raised hands with correct answers. It just goes to show us normal students how unprepared we are for every class.
- The Walking Bath and Body Works
This student thinks that putting on super smelly lotion in the middle of a huge group of people is totally okay. They believe that no one will be distracted by the scented fumes that will quickly consume the entire classroom. News flash: not everyone enjoys the smell of “Sugar Plum Princess” or “Dew Covered Daisies,” especially when the scent is overpowering. It is possible to forget how to breathe when sitting next to one of these students. They rub lotion on their hands, not once, but maybe two or three times, making the scent even stronger. It’s a complete relief when you can finally walk outside into the fresh air and take your first breath of unscented heaven.
- The Blabber
When the professor asks a question in class, this student is a complete mistake to call on — not because they are always wrong, but because they always elaborate on the answer a little too much. They don’t concisely answer after being called on. Instead, they take the class on a long journey through the solving process, adding a few jokes and/or stories to keep their speech interesting, and then spend the rest of their five minute address in a forced one-on-one conversation with the professor, who is trying to move on with the lecture. I’ve always wondered if the professor wants to throw their marker or chalk at the Blabber and scream, “Can we move on?” after the right answer has been said. I know several of us in the classroom have felt that temptation.
- The Back Row Snooze
These students typically lurk in 8 a.m. or 4:30 p.m. lectures. While their excuses may vary, they unfailingly sleep through the entire class. Clearly, they are only coming for the participation points and nothing else. Some Back Row Snoozers still miraculously manage to get decent grades despite their constant naps, which is even more insulting to those of us who can’t. Another button-pushing aspect of these students is that they snore. Loudly. The professor may not hear their snores, but you, personally, can hear them. This makes focusing in class way more difficult. My advice is to bring a towel if they start drooling on you. Not for wiping up their drool, but to smack them awake when they doze off.
- The Bubble Popper
Ever heard of a personal bubble? You know, that space around yourself that no one else can enter without being rude? Yeah, that doesn’t exist with this student. Their backpack is on your feet, their arms more on your lap than the arm rests and their crossed feet are resting on your backpack. They don’t understand the fine line between your space and their space, their side of the desk and your side of the desk, their personal bubble and your personal bubble. Instead, they pop it every time, invading your space without a second thought and leaving muddy shoe prints on your backpack. Your small desk becomes their home couch, and it makes you want to “pop” them on the head. Hard.
- The Teacher’s Pet
Yes, these students still exist in college. However, instead of showering the teacher with gifts and cookies, they praise them publicly. They attempt to have personal conversations with the teacher and try everything possible to get professors to laugh at something that they said. Does it work? Sort of. They might get a short laugh from the professor if they’re lucky. However, their sucking up is all in vain because, as many of us know, college professors have no sympathy when it comes to final grades and assignments. These Pets almost always end up in the dog house just like the rest of us.
- The Echo-er
The professor just said in front of the entire class, loud and clear, that the assignment is due next Monday. This student, three minutes later, turns to you and asks, “Wait, when is this assignment due?” No matter how plainly the professor explains things or lays out their syllabus, this student never seems to process it in their brain. Though the answers to their questions could be easily looked up on Canvas or explained by the professor after class, they choose to be lazy and ask you, their friendly classroom neighbor, to repeat everything a million times while the professor is still talking. As a result, you miss important information yourself.
- The Wanna-be Know-it-All
This is the student everyone secretly enjoys seeing called on because once they open their mouth, nothing of sense comes out. Frankly, it’s entertaining since you don’t know what abstract thing they will say next. You can tell their intentions are pure, and I’m sure it makes some sense in their head, but nothing they share matches what is being taught in the classroom. It’s like a first grade teacher asking their class what two plus two is and this kid answers with “green” in the cutest, most innocent little voice. You have to admire their efforts. I’m positive they are trying to be helpful to the class. However, they might need a bit more time studying the textbook before they participate in class discussions.
- The “Forgetful”
“Hey, can I borrow a pencil?” “Can I look off your book? I forgot mine.” “Can I use a piece of paper?” These sentences are constant phrases from “The Forgetful” student. No matter how many weeks into the semester you are, they always seem to forget that the textbook, pencils, a calculator and notepaper are necessities in college. They tell you they “forgot” it at home, but you know better. They are just too lazy to add another book to their backpack. You might loan them your pencil for the class, but be prepared. They may never give it back. Hold tight to your writing utensils near this student. If not, you may find yourself asking someone else for a pen.
- The Snack-er
This person lives on the Hobbit’s eating schedule: breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, luncheon, afternoon tea, dinner and supper and then some. “The Snack-er” always has food with them, and it’s usually the loud foods like chips or carrots. But they don’t eat them silently. Oh, no. They make sure that everyone can hear and smell exactly what they are eating, like a cow chewing on its cud. It’s quite cruel to those students who are actually starving during class, and annoying to everyone else.
There you have it! The ten most annoying students you encounter on campus. We may never be able to escape from these types of students, but we can at least know how to identify them when they enter our classrooms. As frustrating as some of these students can be, most of us can relate to these students in one way or another. So, as tempting as it can be to roll your eyes, try to resist because you never know, you could be one of them.