As the fall semester comes to a close, many students rely upon the website RateMyProfessors.com as a tool to help pick out classes for the next semester. However, professors seem to not rely upon the website as a tool of evaluation as strongly as the students do.
Dr. Susan Dauria of the Anthropology department stated in an interview: “[Professors] really just look at our evaluations for feedback. I haven’t looked at my Rate My Professors profile in about ten years.”
“Rate My Professor is not a major source [of evaluation]. If you look at the number of reviews and compare it to the time the professor has been at the university, the number of classes they taught and how many students they taught in those classes, you’re working with a third of the percentage of students,” said Dr. David Fazzino, an assistant professor of the Anthropology department.
According to RateMyProfessors.com, the most rated professor here at BU only has 166 ratings from the past 16 years. In comparison, there were about 8,924 total students enrolled in BU for the 2018-19 school year, according to Bloomu.edu.
Rate My Professors has been around since 1999 and has only gotten more traffic on the website since then. The website has “more than 19 million ratings for 1.7 million professors and 7,500 schools” according to their own website. Students are able to review and evaluate professors as well as the student’s university.
Rate My Professors asks students for their information before posting but makes the students’ reviews anonymous.
Bloomsburg University’s overall score today is a 3.8 out of 5 with the top three highest ratings falling under “happiness” with a 4.2, “facilities” with a 4.1, and “social” with a 4.0.
Some professors here at BU also use the website as a conversation starter between other professors, as in the case of Dr. Jeremy Jeffery, an assistant professor of BU’s Business department. Dr. Jefferey stated, “Yes, I look at my profile often. We professors will sometimes say ‘oh, what did you get on your Rate My Professor?’”
Felicia Canouse, a senior Early Childhood Education major, stated: “I try to be helpful, not biased in my reviews. If you cannot write a nice, backed-up response as to why you got the grade you did, then I believe the review is clearly biased.”
Katerin Rodriguez, a sophomore Mass Communications major, said “[Rate My Professors is] a great way to evaluate the professor, and it’s a great way for students to already have an idea of what the professor is going to be like, making the student more motivated to attend class.”