Communication of One's Needs Creates Winners
In July I shared the story of a graduate student who was experiencing some anxiety about the physiology class he was going to be taking. He had heard horrible things about the professor. The common belief was that the professor expected everyone to know everything from the perquisite class. However, for many of the students, it could have been as much as two years prior to taking his class.
I encouraged him to send off an email to the professor stating that he wanted to be prepared for the class and since it had been eighteen months since he took the prerequisite class, he planned on reviewing the material and wanted to be sure that would prepare him for the class. He was surprised to receive a friendly email in which the professor mentioned he would like the student to introduce himself the first day so he could put a face with a name. His perception of this professor changed immediately.
I ran into this student after not seeing him for several months. I inquired about his experience with the professor, and his response was very positive. He said that the professor made sure that he understood every concept in class before he moved on to a new topic. This eliminated the need for tutoring. He ended up with an 89.7% in the class. Since he developed a relationship with the professor, he was able to convince him to bump his grade up .3% to earn an “A,”
He wished he had known this information when he was a freshman and has encouraged me to share it with more students.