Classroom behaviors to avoid

Un-sCWRU your lifestyle

Theresa Smetona

Attending class can often be a grueling ordeal. No matter how interesting a topic or engaging a professor, there always seems to be one or two students whose antics never fail to disrupt the clatss. Below are some behaviors, ranging from slightly annoying to incredibly disgusting, which are commonly observed in Case Western Reserve classrooms.

Arriving more than thirty minutes late to a fifty minute class. Why? What is your point? I sometimes wonder if students do this to make a statement about the worth of a class and thus spite the professor. If you’re one of those people, you need to find something better to do with your time. Save yourself the effort and embarrassment and don’t bother coming to classes that are already halfway over.

Sleeping. Sleeping is incredibly rude to the professor and a distraction to the rest of class. And when coupled with drooling and/or snoring (which may frequently happen) sleeping can be quite gross. If you’re too tired to stay awake in class, stay home until you’ve brushed your teeth and acquired a little professionalism.

Coughing or sneezing without even making an attempt to cover your mouth. It’s disgusting, and something you should have learned not to do in kindergarten. Our immune systems are fragile enough with the minimal amount of sleep we get— please don’t endanger them further by violently expelling a myriad of germs.

Along the same lines: Continual coughing, hacking or sniffling. If you’re sick enough that you can’t last for more than a minute without sounding like you’re about to die, you shouldn’t be in class. We’re not impressed by your dedication, and chances are the professor isn’t either. If you’re sick, stay in bed.

Look up classmates on Facebook, while in the same class as them. One time in class I noticed a girl who had never spoken to me before search my name in Facebook, and then proceed to click through every one of my profile pictures. I was a little nonplussed, especially because she had seen me walk into class and sit down directly behind her. I’ve witnessed several other people do the same thing with mutual classmates, all while sitting just a few rows ahead of their victims. You look like a creep. Stop it.

Like, saying like too many like times, when making like, a profound, like comment. If one out of three words you use is “like,” reconsider before you raise your hand next time in class. Saying “like” more than a few times destroys your credibility and gives the entire class an okay signal to zone out for the remainder of your observation, so save yourself the trouble and organize your thoughts before vomiting up twenty renditions of the word “like”.

Speaking more than the professor in a lecture class. We all have questions and should feel free to raise them. However, the majority of the class time should not be devoted to your queries and opinions. Seek outside help, find a tutor, meet with the professor, drop the class, etc. Just spare the rest of us.

Asking painfully obvious questions. Example: Professor addresses class: “Please see the syllabus for further details about the paper, including page requirement and due date.” Token student: “Wait. When is the paper due?” Look it up, don’t waste our time and think before you speak.

Bringing personal details into class discussions. Save the trivial details about how a certain character reminds you of your grade school piano teacher who had mousy brown hair and spoke with a lisp. No one cares. And if it’s an intensely personal or traumatic experience which should be taken seriously, chances are that hearing it will make the rest of the class uncomfortable.

Clipping your nails. This confuses me. Is the issue of your slightly overgrown nail really so pressing that it can’t wait till class is over? Besides the grating metallic clank the nail clipper makes, the idea of discarded remnants of your claws being littered all over your desk and the ground is frankly sickening. Although I do applaud your foresight in bringing a nail clipper with you in the first place, a classroom is not the spot to give yourself a manicure.

Picking your nose. I hate the fact that this needs to be mentioned, but it does. Being mentally absent in class does not excuse gross physical behaviors. Sitting in the back of the class does not make it okay. Slightly turning your head does not make it okay. Pretending to scratch your face does not make it okay. Closing your eyes has no effect on our eyesight, and does not make it okay. WE CAN ALL SEE YOU.

Theresa Smetona is a senior majoring in Spanish and English. In her free time, she likes to drink coffee and consider the possible benefits of her future unemployment.