College is a busy time and it can be hard to build relationship with your instructors because you are both dedicated to all of the things on your to do lists. One of the best things you can do, however, is to take the time to create a partnership with your professors. This isn’t about sucking up so you get better grades, but about having a relationship where your professor recognizes you as someone who wants to do well, and has an appreciation of their course, and therefore, will be more open to giving their time to you and helping you. Here’s how to do it.
College professors have many students, sometimes hundreds, and you aren’t going to stick out in the crowd unless you make an effort to do so. Introduce yourself to your professors on the first day of class. You may need to remind them who you are a few times since they do have so many students.
Participate in Class
You could go to class and sit quietly taking notes and still get a great grade. However, participating and making your face known means you have a whole wealth of information right at your fingertips. Sit up front and ask questions. Answer questions and join in demonstrations. Your professor will soon recognize you and probably want to get to know you better.
Go to Office Hours
Many students never attend office hours with their professors. You aren’t doing yourself any favors by staying away. Going to office hours allows you to get more in depth knowledge about the topics presented in class and lets you build a positive partnership with your professors. Spend time at office hours and you’ll have a better understanding of the material and have someone on your side.
Ask for Advice
Your professors are there to help you reach your goals, both in college and after you graduate. If you need guidance, your instructors are very valuable resources. They are in the field and understand the latest advances and research in your chosen area of study. Ask them for advice and they’ll always remember who you are.
Join a Project
Many professors offer their students opportunities to help out with a project or research topic they are pursuing outside of class. Volunteer to take part and you have the perfect in for building a great relationship with your professor. At the same time, you gain invaluable knowledge and experience that will serve you well down the road.
Keep up with the Info
It’s hard to build a good relationship with your professor if you aren’t keeping up with the course material. By staying on top of assignments and getting good grades on your papers and tests, you give your professor the chance to learn more about you and respect your talents and intelligence.
Attend Departmental Events
If you make an effort to appear at other events outside class, your professor is going to notice and want to interact with you. Go to seminars and workshops that have nothing to do with class and take time to talk to your professor outside the strain of the classroom and chances are you’ll have a good relationship in no time at all.
Having a good relationship with your professors has many benefits. You gain extra knowledge and expertise and have a resource for times when you need additional help. Even when the class is over, you have someone who can write you a letter of recommendation for future endeavors and someone who you can partner with in future projects or papers. There’s really no good reason to avoid getting to know your professors.