Friday, February 3, 2017

The Survey

The graduate school professors would distribute two performance surveys per class, one in the middle of the course and another at the end.  The questionnaires' purpose was to determine the professors' performance and the students' take on the quality of the class.  The common practice was for the professors to take the surveys and review it on their own and with their superiors, taking praise or adjusting their work accordingly.

As I took the survey, I poured all of my frustrations on paper, stating that the professor takes her shoes off in class, exposing her Timberland socks, and puts her feet on the desk as she lectures.  I wrote that she eats, be it her lunch or a snack, while she is speaking during class.  I stated that she treats the classroom like her own private and personal living room and that she has no respect for the teaching environment.  I wrote that her behavior is distracting and unprofessional and disrespectful.  It felt good to be able to release all of the frustrations that had been building up in my chest throughout the duration of this particular class.  I was happy that finally someone will tell this professor to be professional and stand up in front of class and talk instead of almost laying down on her back and talking like we are at a slumber party.

I so desperately wanted to suggest for her to get a new haircut, point out the dire need for her to dye her gray hair and to update her wardrobe from 1965.  Even though these issues were distracting and frankly disturbing for me personally, I had to remind myself that this is not a fashion survey.  I figured that not only it could not be argued that these fashion disasters affected her teaching or the class, but also it was very unlikely that the extremely liberal graduate school in Psychology in Washington State would give a hoot about these things, most likely finding them not only insignificant but insulting.  And I surely did not want to be insulting!  

The next day in class I learned that this particular teacher's procedure is to read all of the surveys out loud in class and discuss the feedback with the students.  As she was reading my comments with a smirk, her tone was mocking.  All of the other students in class mimicked her response with a high and mighty air.  They all defended the teacher and every single person in the classroom knew who the writer of those comments was.  As I sat there quietly and wishing for a giant hole in the ground to suck me down, I was in disbelief and utter shock that I was the only person there who was bothered by this professor's style.

I finished that class in misery.