Students need to respect their professors

Even though we are all adults, faculty members rank above students. Therefore, we should give them more respect for doing their jobs.

Unfortunately, many students seem to think that they own the classroom, and it’s their right to play by their own rules.

Such was the case in my journalism class last year. All the instructor did was ask a student who was not part of the class to remain quiet, but the student responded rudely, and the professor told her to leave. The student then responded with an expletive and the professor responded by yelling as she ran down the hall.

Bill Cassidy, associate professor of communication, said outbursts displayed by students warrant immediate action.

“If someone were to [respond like] that, they’d get an earful from me,” Cassidy said.

While cases like the one in my journalism class exist, not all students feel that disrespect is a major concern.

“A good percentage of [students] are probably in school to be professors themselves,” said NIU graduate Jason Manning said. “There are definitely a few exceptions, but most disrespect toward professors is looked down upon by the time college comes around.”

While Manning said disrespect is not a huge problem, he thinks that there are times when speaking up would be reasonable if it’s done in the proper way.

“Anything that interferes with the other students being able to learn is probably a good time to speak up,” Manning said. “I think texting can probably be ignored – it’s not disrupting anybody else and professors usually make a huge deal about it. Professors should be direct, but not overly mean.”

Junior meteorology major Mike Iverson noticed his astronomy professor handling disruptions appropriately.

“I always noticed that [the instructor] was very quick and efficient with his reactions,” Iverson said. “He would never drag out the issue. He would immediately return to the lecture topic right after addressing [the problem].”

Some students may not think much about respect because they pay for their education. But what about the students who do not want to be disrupted?

Iverson said respect toward the professor affects academics, thus affecting the worth of college tuition.

“[Students] want to be assured that they’re getting the best value education for their buck,” Iverson said. “That involves being cost-effective and efficient.”

Not only does respect for higher authority apply for an education and tuition, but it also applies to your experience in a future career. Think about it. Your boss might be the same age as you. But if you refuse to obey orders, you can bet you’ll be on your way to getting fired.

Even if you are an employee and the person you encounter isn’t your boss, word gets around about how you present yourself. If you’re one of those people who thinks that defiance comes without consequence, think again. The way you act in public affects the way people view you.

Both your work life and social interaction rely on how you respect authority. College is preparation for how you handle life in the real world.