Catherine Enos – Opinions Editor
Every class has that one person. You know who I’m talking about: it’s that one student that dominates class time and has to discuss or debate everything that the professor says.
Whether you’re in an introductory level class or an upper-level class, there’s always that one person. And sometimes it’s understandable— maybe they’re really excited about the material or maybe no one else wants to talk in class, so they volunteer to fill up all of the awkward silences. In that case, good for them. Most classes have a participation variable to grading, so you might as well participate when you can to get a good grade.
But then there’s people that take it to an extreme. There’s a time for class participation and generally, professors will make it very clear when they do and don’t want students to participate. For example, sometimes students ask complex questions that just confuse the rest of class and sometimes professors make it clear that they don’t want to discuss concepts from other courses. I’m not saying all questions are inappropriate, but if a complex question is only going to benefit your understanding of a concept, maybe consider emailing the professor or going to their office hours.
Another thing these disruptive students do is thwart the speed of class. Sometimes professors will be on time with the lecture and that student will start nitpicking or drop unnecessary comments, resulting in a flustered professor and annoyed fellow students.
In short, try to avoid being this student. You pay tuition to learn from your professors, not to show the rest of the class how smart you think you are. By spending more time dropping unnecessary comments or grandstanding, you are less likely to hear anything valuable from your professors or from your fellow students. As we’ve been told all our lives: think before you speak.