14 Suggestions on Influencing Teachers

How you communicate with your professor affects how well you do in a course. In general, professors are likely to be impressed with students who show a genuine interest in their course material and ask good questions. The best way to get on your professor's good side is to be an "interested" student.

The following are some strategies to demonstrate your interest and curiosity:

  • Don't criticize, condemn, or complain to the teacher about his or her performance: 
    rather:  focus on, and discuss, the material and your understanding of it.

  • Let the teacher know what you appreciate about the course

  • Smile

  • Know and use the teacher's name

  • Listen to what the teacher has to say about himself or herself

  • Talk in terms of what the teacher is interested in

  • Let the teacher know that you think he or she is important

  • Avoid arguing

  • If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically

  • Ask questions rather than give orders

  • Try honestly to see the teacher's point of view

  • Let the teacher know that you sincerely want to do well in the course

  • Always have the course textbook in your hand whenever you see the instructor

  • Hand in all assignments on time throughout the semester