Many students have heard of ratemyprofessor.com and some rely on it as a vital source of information, especially important when registering for class.
Ratemyprofessor.com is a Web site where students grade their professors based on easiness, helpfulness, and clarity and anonymously leave comments on their thoughts about the class and the professor.
Dahima Berbick, a junior finance major, has used ratemyprofessor.com since freshman year and calls it “her site.” She says all her friends use it and she informs freshmen about the site as well.
“It’s a major factor when registering and it’s reliable,” Berbick said. “You won’t take one student’s word, but if several students say a teacher is horrible or if they teach well, basically things that would take you the whole semester to find out, you can find out on the site.”
Berbick says she leaves ratings for her professors frequently to update the site and believes the Web site is helpful to professors as well.
“Professors can learn from the comments and change their teaching habits,” she said.
Over 1,600 St. John’s University Queens campus professors are listed on ratemyprofessor.com with over 4,000 universities and colleges listed in total. It is a Web site devoted to allowing students to voice their opinions. Although not statistically valid, the Web site can provide insight to what a class is like, an idea of what students can expect, and what a professor’s teaching habits are like.
Ratemyprofessor.com can also have a negative impact. Dr. Basilio Monteiro, associate professor of mass communications, says the Web site is a good forum for students to voice their opinion but it does not accurately reflect what goes on in the classroom.
“It provides a good opportunity for students to express their thoughts and feelings, but it is a place for students to also be vindictive,” Dr. Monteiro said. “If a student is not happy because the professor is demanding or asks the students to do work, students can use the website to be vindictive.”
Pamela David, a sophomore speech pathology major, says that ratemyprofessor.com is really subjective and although it does affect what classes she decides to take, she only depends on it for a general consensus.
“Sometimes students will leave a rating saying the professor was hard and the worst teacher while I think the professor is great.,” said David. “Basically, if it is an easy A class, the professor will get a good rating.”
David says required classes and classes that fit in her schedule are more important to her than what professor is teaching a class.