Thursday, March 17, 2011 - should this exist? (by anon) exists as a public way for students to rate their professors.  We all know about it.  Some ratings are awesome, some are...well...deathly.  It is a highly useful website for students to get a possible glimpse of a professor before he or she signs up for a class.  And for what it is worth, the evaluations seem to be fairly accurate, for the most part.  Of course we can always debate whether student perceptions actually equal teaching effectiveness.

But I don't care about that right now.  I think we should start a website that looks just like, but that it is about students, where professors can make public evaluations of them - both awesome and deathly. would be the appropriate name (even if it is taken right now - or I suppose we could go with  Wouldn't that be fair?  And it could be tremendously useful for an instructor who, for instance, has a troublesome or troubled student.  The instructor may find the student on and possibly find some explanations.

But here's another reason why we might want  What I don't like about is that if a well-meaning professor, who tries really hard to make class interesting and engaging for the student, gets blasted by a student on (who probably does so because of an impending bad grade), that prof begins to look like a bad prof.  Some use that website for revenge.  That's not right.  But if we had, it is possible that student might think twice about enacting such revenge.  If the prof who was rated badly by some student has a good guess who might have posted that rating (and usually the prof does), the prof could rate that student too for all to see.  It would provide a little checks-and-balance.

So who's going to start


  1. I love this! I always thought of this, and how rate my professor isn't always the best option for the reason of students just trying to get easy classes or bash a teacher for their own wrong doings in the class. would be awesome.

  2. I completely agree! I've found a lot of fellow classmates to be lazy, unprepared and disengaged. Yet, when they receive a bad grade, they automatically place the blame on the professor. As an older, non-traditional student, I've come to realize when you sign up for a class, you enter into a contract with the professor. You agree to complete the tasks and readings assigned and the professor agrees to help you understand the material and guide you through the course. Professors should also have an outlet to express themselves.

  3. This article is awesome, i mean some of us read before taking a class, many even take those comments seriously and talk about them in public. But hey! rating a professor for any reason seems easier than rating a student. Anyways, if someone decides to start a or anything like that i wanna see a as well! =)

  4. So there are about fifty different reasons that this is a bad idea, but let's look at just a few since I sort of want to get back to playing Super Mario Land 2.

    1) Professors do not choose their students. Professor rating sites are useful because it can be very useful to avoid picking difficult or incompetent professors. This is, in fact, the primary purpose of such websites. This element is totally absent from your theoretical student rating site, because professors don't hand-pick students.

    So in my opinion your idea is already wayyyy dead at this point-- but let's look at some other flaws anyway, just for fun (Wario can wait).

    2) Reaffirming the beliefs you have about the quality of your students-- which is really the only 'function' of this idea that I can think of-- is of dubious usefulness. Does it really help your confidence that much to know that other people agree that Jim is bad at math or whatever? And if you plan to use the information to treat students differently (which might be getting a little sketchy in itself?), are your own first-hand impressions really insufficient to that end?

    3) Rating students on a website is time otherwise spent on dealing with the students that are currently in front of you (or really, anything else of even moderate usefulness, like cleaning the gutters).

    4) Worrying about how "good" your students are, instead of how effectively you are conveying your message to them, is just super backwards in general, and I don't think I need to explain why.

    5) The social consequences can only be described as "comical." It's not like it's difficult for a student to find out exactly which professor they took Intro to Managerial Accounting with, or whatever. And you'd better believe they're not going to sigh and wonder "what they did wrong" when they receive a poor "review." I mean, they probably received a bad grade in the class anyway-- I can understand feeling insulted when a few students think you're no good at your job, but seriously, talk about "insult to injury."

    6) Seriously, the social consequences would genuinely be hilarious and make me laugh very, very hard, for a long time: look at the student rating sites that already exist. Most importantly, look closely at the level of intelligence involved in many of those reviews. Now imagine just 5% of those borderline offensively idiotic one-liners-- except instead of being posted by some drunken frat guy with no credibility, it's a _professor._ In fact, any level of negativity projected by the faculty reflects poorly on the institution (nobody wants to attend a school with mean, critical professors-- or lots of poor students!). I could even see it becoming encouraged for professors to give as many glowing reviews as possible, which I'm sure you wouldn't be terribly thrilled about.

  5. Yes, rating of profs and students is a bad idea period. At a small institution like Whitewater, especially in relatively small departments and majors, you know who the fucked up teachers are, so any kind of rating system is stupid, and profs for the most part are intelligent. It does not take them long to spot the fucked up students, they are usually sitting in the back playing with themselves, trying to pretend that are following the lecture on their lap tops or in some cases sleep. Many of the fucked up students do not come to class.

  6. What does it all matter. Camus said life is absurd, that the best thing to do is to kill yourself. The Republicans and Walker are going to fuck us good and the bastards are not even going to use some of that Ky stuff. No, it's like prison sex, bend over motherfuckers. We run around on campus spending time writing and passing silly letters and resolutions as if these bastards are going to listen and respect them. Look dummies, there were over 200,000 motherfuckers in Madison, and they said fuck you. So stop all this bull shit about rate my prof and rate my students you. These motherfuckers are coming. So you got a few fucked up profs and students. Read a motherfucking book. Save your energy to fight the real bastards, the motherfucking GOP.

  7. Whoa. Not everything is about Walker. You need to chill and put back a few green beers. If you're whole life right now is revolving around being angry at Walker and the GOP, then they have really won. Don't get angry, just recall them when the time comes around.

    And are you sure you're not being overly egotistic to insist that everyone needs to be singly focused on the one topic you are caring about? Are you not able to address multiple issues at one time?

    Maybe you need to stop sleeping at the capitol and rejoin us in the daily routine of teaching and learning. And, man, if you are sacrificing good instruction because of your anger at the GOP, then you have bigger problems to worry about than complaining about blog posts.

  8. Oh there you go again with your silly assumptions and put downs. If you don't agree with the comment then say so, all that other bull shit about sleeping in the capitol, anger, re joining you and the rest of the great teachers is nothing more than bull shit. So I will politely tell you to stick it all where the sun rarely shines. In the future if you do not agree with comments, address the actual comments and do not make grand assumptions about the writer's mental state or where he or she is sleeping. They may be sleeping with someone close to you!

  9. ok, you've got me! I can't top your humor! Brilliant.

    1) You tell me to address your actual comment, but you didn't do the same in your last comment to me. That's good.

    2) You tell me to stop with put downs, but you tell me to stick it where the sun doesn't shine and you're making weird threats (or advances?) about sleeping with people near me. Sweet.

    3) You say not to make assumptions about your mental states, but you're clearly unhinged about the Walker thing and about anyone challenging you in the least. A+

    Yes, I find this a little funny. And I especially find it funny that anyone would be so bent on the Walker thing that talking about anything else is considered bad or unimportant.

  10. Xavier, please help me.

    I cannot think about anything but that motherfucking Walker. I am mad as hell. Now this motherfucker has moved to the top of the list as a potential contender for the presidency. I don't give a damn about rate my prof, rate my student, or rate my motherfucking dog. I am going to take a motherfucking walk to cool off. Fuck that, I will never use that word "walk" again. I am going to marcher (French word for walk.

    I read the following in Huff Post.

    CHICAGO (Reuters) - Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who signed sweeping curbs on public unions into law on March 11, may be emerging as a potential 2012 Republican presidential contender, according to a poll issued on Thursday.

    The phone survey by Public Policy Polling of 642 registered voters on March 10-13 found that Walker's favorability among Republican voters was 55 percent positive and 11 percent negative, a spread of 44 points.

    That pushed Walker ahead of other possible Republican contenders like former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

    "That makes him already more popular with the party base than Mike Huckabee (+42 at 58/16), Sarah Palin (+40 at 63/23), Mitt Romney (+21 at 47/26), and Newt Gingrich (+19 at 49/30)," the polling group said in a release accompanying the results.

    "None of the folks most seriously considering this race have been able to get any momentum yet, leaving a lot of room for a fresher face to enter and get a lot of traction," it said. "Walker's crusade against the unions has put him in a position where he could be that guy."

    President Walker, I am so motherfucking mad. I could slap that motherfucker into next week.

  11. The problem with using this for university students is quite simple: Professors really don't care about you if you don't care about their class. I'm not saying they're heartless, I'm saying that if you don't show up to class, complete your homework or work hard on studying for tests, they really don't care about your failure. They're still getting paid while you spend your money on the class, and they aren't going to waste their time following you around, asking you why you aren't working hard. They'll probably see you next semester anyway. And who can blame them for that? (a side note: of course professors will work with you if you're putting an effort forth and are still failing. I'm not saying they're heartless, I'm saying that they will not overstep their own boundaries to help lazy students.)

    Now, if a student never showed up to class, you can expect that a professor would quickly forget about them, or at the very least they would care so little about them that they wouldn't care to post a negative review on a website. That leaves us with only positive reviews, since professors truly enjoy working with students who pull their weight. We can't have that!

    The biggest problem, though, is this: if a student were to read a collection of negative reviews on their profile, would they be motivated, or would they not? They certainly would be motivated (maybe to kill someone), but they would not be motivated to work hard, I daresay. The result of the website: More motivation for the motivated, and more discouragement for the discouraged.

  12. Happy Gabe, I'm the original poster, and even though I have problems with many of your points, there is one point that I find quite good.

    You say, "In fact, any level of negativity projected by the faculty reflects poorly on the institution (nobody wants to attend a school with mean, critical professors-- or lots of poor students!). I could even see it becoming encouraged for professors to give as many glowing reviews as possible, which I'm sure you wouldn't be terribly thrilled about." I completely agree. Such a site that shows an abundance of either overly critical professors or poor students (or both) will reflect badly on the university. For that reason, I kill my idea too.

    Your other reasons are not as strong IMHO since posting ratings is not time consuming, one can structure the site differently so that it is not class specific, and there are different functions for the site other than the ones you criticize (for instance, read the post again).

    But I do agree with your #6 comment.

    Anon 7:40, you make it sound like those students who do bad and would get bad reviews are in a downward spiral. Such students might not agree with you.

  13. Why would professors need a This won't help professors at all. At least I don't see any benefits of it. But on the other hand professors effect students grades so much its almost ridiculous. So when trying to compete with other students from different schools to get into grad school, the only thing that matters is what letters I was given or "earned". For instance, say I take a chem class one year with a tough professor and get a B. Then the following year, they switch to an easier professor and a person who works as hard as I do gets an A. Well thats not fair is it. So the students are just trying to compete with everyone else and ratemyprofessor gives those who use it an advantage. I realize it is sad, but it is also pathetic that a letter determines how much knowledge I have, therefore how far I can go in a career.

  14. it is about the grades! students who do not get the grades they want take it out on the professor. Some professor give in and others do not. Tenured professor do not have to give in, but by the time they get tenure they are often much softer than when they started. Who would benefit from a "RATEMYSTUDETNTS" site? Potential employers, graduate school supervisors, and yes, students themselves, as they realize their actions have consequences and become more mature and responsible.

    I do not know who owns it,m but please bring it up online. Anonymity would be a potential problem, but students do not have to be rated for a specific class, but rather they could be classified by the school, year and faculty. That way, a rating could have come from a number of professors.

  15. I think that a ratemystudents site would be very popular. As a full professor who does not need to worry as much over the student evaluations as untenured faculty, I still think that ratemyprofessor is often misused, but student raters venting unfairly, administrators wanting to pay people less money, and untenured faculty becoming more and more anxious about their evaluations to the point of giving easy As. However, I am not certain that faculty would be any more reasonable than students. I can imagine faculty venting unfairly about a student in such a way that the student may be harmed by it. If potential internship supervisors or employers read the comments, a young person's career could be harmed. What I wish would happen at my university is a faculty evaluation of student character and behavior that happens outside of the grade evaluation. This would allow professors a place to comment on a students' attitude in class, willingness to work, maturity, discipline, and ambition. These ratings could be collected in an e-portfolio that the student could review from time to time. Ideally, there would be growth over the four years.