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8 Thriving Tips for Students: How to Communicate to Professors Properly

Every student should remember that their professors are the people too.

Talking
to professors is always encouraged in colleges. After all, doing so
can help you learn something new, get some valuable tips, receive
recommendations, and find a way to handle educational troubles (if
they appear).

But
despite the fact that all students are told they can communicate with
their professors, few of them actually find the courage to do so. It
might seem understandable, especially for the freshmen, but this
could lead to some unpleasant situations as well. Just imagine a
student failing to complete a course just because they experienced
some troubles and were too afraid or shy to explain this to their
professor.

That’s
why today we want to offer you 8 tips that hopefully will make your
communication with professors much easier.

1.
Remember Their Preferred Channel of Communication.

When
a course begins, the professor teaching it usually explains how
exactly they prefer to communicate with the students. For example,
some like doing it via email, while some check their email rarely,
preferring to talk instead. If the professor prefers an offline
appointment, they also usually specify hours they are available.

Remembering
these preferences can help you a lot. For example, you will know that
you need to talk to your professor in person instead of writing them
an email.

2.
Schedule an Appointment.

Sure,
you might want to try talking to your professor after a lecture –
but chances are they won’t have much time for you then. Instead of
trying to do this at the most convenient time for you, try being
respectful and scheduling an appointment in advance during the hours
a certain professor is available. This will ensure that the professor
is available for a proper conversation during that time.

3.
Introduce Yourself.


Some
professors have many students, some have fewer. Some of them memorize
students better, some do not. Either way, you shouldn’t hope that
the professor actually remembers who you are.

Introduce
yourself when you come to see them, saying not only your name but
also your group and the course you take. This is all about being
polite and setting the right tone for the future conversation.

4.
Be Ready for a Small Talk.

That’s
a tricky part – there is a chance that the professor will want you
to get straight to the point. Some of them, however, prefer to have a
small talk first – and you should be ready for it instead of
freaking out.

Many
professors choose to teach because they actually like students and
enjoy talking to them – so try to be nice and make a friendly small
talk.

5.
Understand the Purpose of Your Visit.

You
don’t know how much time the professor can afford to spend talking
with you, so you should do your best to save them time. To do so,
think beforehand what the purpose of your visit is. Describe it
clearly to yourself and then deliver it to the professor after a
small talk (or right away if there isn’t any small talk).

It
also helps the professor to understand what to expect from you and
how long your conversation is going to last. Getting to know the
professor better is one thing and asking them for advice about your
writing is completely another – and you should remember that.

6.
Make Sure You Have Everything You Might Need With You.

If
you ask for help or advice that might require looking through some
additional data (for example, your cause
and effect essay
,
project, coursework, grades, etc.), it’s always better to have this
data with you. After all, the professor might not have enough time to
dig into the data themselves. Or they might have some time, but this
still means that you’ll have to wait.

7.
Remember That a Professor Is a Person Too.

It’s
an obvious thing, yet many students seem to forget about that. This
stops them from talking to the professors in the first place – and
this also stops them from sharing certain personal matters.

While
some things (stress, workload, your relative’s illness, your
parents’ recent divorce) aren’t related to your studies, they can
still affect them a lot. Sure, this doesn’t mean that you need to
tell your professor about them in details – but telling about those
things in general is okay. And it’s often a must when such things
do affect your grades and could lead to you falling behind.

So
don’t worry: your professors are people too and they indeed can
understand.

8.
Don’t Forget: Even Talking Isn’t Always
Able to Fix Everything.

The
sad truth is that some students come to the professors only when it’s
too late: for example, when the course is coming to an end. There
might not be too many things the professor can do to help you fix a
problem in such a case.

Also,
the professor might not be too eager to help you: for example, if you
didn’t attend their lectures or showed some kind of disrespect.

While
most of the professors do want to help the students, sometimes, it
just isn’t possible. So if you put off the important conversation
as long as possible, you might want to brace yourself for some
disappointment.

However,
don’t let that discourage you. In most cases, there’s still a
great possibility to get help from your professor, to get to know
them more, and so on. So do your best, remember these tips, and try
scheduling an appointment as soon as possible. Hopefully, it will
turn out okay! 

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