We need better professors

By By Tristan Bennett

By Tristan Bennett

Professors are chiefly concerned with relaying academic knowledge to the students in their class. The information a professor is supposed to share is academic and not personal.

There are few students taking a required course for their major who honestly care whether or not their professor happens to be a Muslim, Jew, Christian or Buddhist. Unfortunately, some professors seem to confuse the fact that a class is being attended for a grade and ultimately a diploma with whether or not the whole student body needs to hear if they think Utah has silly liquor laws or that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are backwards and ignorant.

Such professors will not come out and make a statement or accusation because that could land them in trouble — except, of course, if they mock mainstream Christians. They instead choose to use veiled and passive-aggressive terms in their speeches and lectures.

However, if a student wanted to know how a professor feels about those issues, he or she would talk to the professor in person.

Professors should stick to the information the U and the students attending the class are paying them to teach.

What’s worse is not only do professors feel the need to offer unsolicited opinions to the U’s student body — there are many who have no business teaching whatsoever. A doctorate degree in physical chemistry doesn’t mean you can teach.

As with anything, teaching is a skill that needs to be developed. There are those who can teach and there are those who should just stick to research.

But that is really the point, isn’t it? The administration and the professors who are supposed to be teaching us are more concerned with the research a graduate degree-holding person can conduct and the research dollars they bring into the U than they are with advancing student education.

Teaching students has become a secondary consideration when it should be the main focus of any and all operations the U conducts.

Don’t get me wrong — there are U professors who are very good at teaching. There are professors who are challenging, interesting and actually seem to care. These are professors who always preface their sharing of personal opinion or belief by letting students know that they are just illustrating another way to see the situation.

It would be nice to see more of those professors. They use anecdotes and are interesting, enlightening and can add color and comedy to an otherwise boring lecture.

It seems, though, that the bad outweighs the good with teachers at the U.

It would be nice to see more professors care about not only the quality of their research and what proof of alcoholic beverage they can purchase in this state, but about the quality of instruction they give to their students.

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