5 Goofy Questions Students Ask

and the Answers We Instructors Would Love to Give


1. YOU SAY: "I know the syllabus says the assignment is due today, but I forgot to bring it to class. When can I turn it in?"

WE’D LOVE TO SAY: "Never. Assignments are due when they’re due. Don’t forget to bring them with you. Don’t try to do them in the 30 seconds before class begins. If you’re going to miss a class session when something’s due, it’s your responsibility to turn it in a session early, or to have someone else bring it to campus and either deliver it to me or put it in my mailbox or slide it under my office door by the time class ends. Obviously, I’ll be reasonable in cases of legitimate emergency absence. In such cases, you are required to call me or email me by 9 PM on the day of the absence to explain why you missed turning in the assignment on time. If your reason is legit, I’ll accept the late work. If not, or if you forget to contact me by 9 PM on the day of the absence, I won’t."

2. YOU SAY: "Do I have to [insert just about anything here]?"

WE’D LOVE TO SAY: "No. This is college, not high school. In high school, you had to. In college, you pay over $110 per credit hour for the opportunity to. If you want to pay for the opportunity and not use it, that’s up to you!"

3. YOU SAY: "I have something I have to do coming up next week. Do you mind if I skip class?"

WE’D LOVE TO SAY: "Why would I mind? I get paid the exact same salary whether you’re there or not. But keep in mind that assignments are due when they’re due, and you’re responsible for all material covered during any class you miss and for any new assignments given during your absence."

4. YOU SAY: "I wasn’t in class last time. I didn’t miss anything important, did I?"

WE’D LOVE TO SAY: "No, of course not. The moment I noticed you weren’t there, I had all the students who were there put their heads down and just sit silently until the session ended."

5. YOU SAY: "I wasn’t in class last time. What did I miss?"

: "You missed an entire class session. If I knew how to cram the material into three minutes, I would have done so in class and sent everyone home early. But I don’t. If you’d like me to teach the entire session over again just for you, I get paid $80 an hour, and, frankly, I’d prefer cash to a check."

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