Schmoozing Professors 101

Grade inflation, what is it? Grade inflation is the receiving of points toward your grade you didn’t actually earn. It’s when professors give you the “benefit of the doubt” on your final grade. It happens all the time. The students professors like, they sometimes to often get the A- when they should have gotten a B+ on points alone. Professors are human, it pays to be appreciated by them. It helps to show them how hard you are working. But professors are also savvy. Don’t be an obvious “butt kisser.” Don’t be obvious, be cunning. Be nice at all times, be respectful, and don’t act like a “premed.” Don’t cry and demand points for silly errors or if the professor did make a mistake ask politely he/she reconsider the grade. I would never ask for points back. Instead, go to your professor’s office during office hours, which by the time of the test you should have been doing regularly, to ask for clarification of the material, because you just “want to understand it.” Tell him/her you LOVE the class, and always make sure to read his/her research, even articles from 1954 in some obscure journal. Tell your professor, “You know what we covered in class today? Isn’t that from your research on Amazon jungle rats found in the sewers of New York?”

You get the idea: schmooooze your way to success. You could offer to do free a literature review for his/her research lab in the summer, because you just love Amazon jungle rats and their plight living homeless in New York sewers. Start a volunteer organization that works to feed homeless jungle rats. You never know, you could get a letter of recommedation someday, or even a job.

Note: Don’t do what I did, brag to an AXE chemistry fraternity classmate about what a great butt kisser I was. Keep that quiet. He honored me by presenting me with the first ever “Brown Nose Overlord (BNO)” award at the end of the year college banquet. Judging be the overwhelming cheers from the college faculty, perhaps I wasn’t as smooth as I thought, but I did have great relationships with all my professors, and it helps.

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