20 Big Fat Lies College Professors Tell Us

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Grab a tub of popcorn, sit back and relax because you’re about to go through the top 20 big fat lies that college professors tell their students in colleges from sea to shining sea. You’ll be hard pressed to think of any others. This list pretty much covers every base. Enjoy!

1. “You can’t wait until the night before the exam to study and hope to pass it.”

Not true. There are many different little details and variables to consider here. It’s actually quite possible to procrastinate and still get good grades.

2. “I’ll have the tests/exams/homework graded and back to you by the end of the week.”

Yeah right. Some professors are pretty good about this, while others aren’t because they’re so bogged down with classes. They’ve got hundreds of tests to grade and papers to inscribe in their ledger. Don’t count on it.

3. “What you’re learning in this class will prepare you for the real world.”

Absolutely not true. That’s like saying that working out will prepare a gladiator for battle. Knowledge is helpful, but there’s a big difference between the classroom and the world off campus.

4. “If you fail 101, you should probably choose a different major.”

Huh? If you have your heart set on a major but bomb 101 that just means you need to try harder. For example, just because a music student struggles with reading and writing music theory doesn’t mean they’re not gifted musicians.

5. “I take each one of your papers and read through them thoroughly.”

Really? That is almost never true. There simply isn’t enough time.

6. “I can spot an A-student from a mile off.”

Maybe they can and maybe they can’t. They’re likely just trying to come off as superior or trying to intimidate students to try and scare off the rabble. A-students are made, not born.

7. “I do give extensions and I consider exceptions to conventional rules.”

If they need to announce this then there’s probably some strings attached. Extensions typically come with a certain type of price tag.

8. “This is a fabulous field to focus on, with plentiful employment opportunities.”

With only a tiny few exceptions, a college degree in any major doesn’t mean a job at all. Period. You’re heading into the 21st century online globalized workforce.

9. “I’m not paid enough to be biased.”

Everyone is biased, especially a professor.

10. “I care deeply about your success in this major.”

How is it possible for a professor to care about hundreds of incoming and outgoing students year over year? Maybe if you establish a strong relationship with them, otherwise this is a stretch.

11. “This is by far the very best class I’ve ever taught.”

How cliché. Unless you’re in a truly legendary class for some reason then what’s the point of that statement?

12. “Oh yes, I always knew I was going to become a college professor.”

Could be true, but in most cases it’s not. Remember the old saying, “Those that can’t do, teach.”

13. “This is the first time I’ve had to do this but…”

Teachers say this to their classes from 1st grade to graduate year Senior Seminar.

14. “Your final GPA will make a huge impact on the rest of your life.”

Not true. The GPA is just a number and has no direct bearing on what you are or are not capable of accomplishing in life.

15. “I expect the best out of my students.”

No, they probably don’t. The longer they’ve been teachers the less true this statement is likely to be.

16. “The tests aren’t what’s most important here.”

At the end of the day that’s simply not true. Take away the need to pass tests and exams, and what’s left?

17. “I don’t accept excuses.”

Maybe not excuses, but there are always extenuating circumstances that all professors must take into account.

18. “Oh sure, you can stop by my office anytime you need and my door’s always open.”

This is so not true, especially if they teach a common elective course or core required course within a popular major. When they’re door is open there’s probably a line and someone already inside.

19. “If you show up to each lecture, you’ll pass my class.”

This isn’t true. There’s a fair amount to be said with exposure, listening intently and taking notes but just showing up doesn’t guarantee anything.

20. “Just be honest, don’t write what you know I want to hear.”

Don’t ever fall for this one. Aim to strike a balance between stretching your limits and the limits of the class/instructions, and being honest.

What other lies have you heard from your professors? Share in comments!

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