Communicating With Professors


Hey there, cuties!

Today was my first day of the semester– craziness! I only had one class but I loved it and I’m already really excited for this semester. For those who don’t know, I’m a junior in college majoring in songwriting (yes, it’s a real major, yes at a real college, yes my job prospects concern me).

I had my first conversation with a professor today and it made me want to share with you the two conversations I have at the beginning of the semester when I meet my professors.

Conversation 1: Attendance

I generally am really good about attending class. I don’t ever just not go for the sake of not going, however I do often have health issues that get in the way of me getting to go to class. However, this week the real conversation I’m having is just in regards to attendance as far as doctor’s visits are concerned.

My professor this morning only gives one “free” absence, so I made sure to ask him if doctor’s appointments counted against that. I don’t schedule any weekly appointments to conflict with my classes, but sometimes when I see a specialist I don’t have as much flexibility. For example, I made an intake appointment in September for next week, because that was the earliest I could get in. But now it conflicts with my school schedule and I can’t reschedule it now.

I find that being upfront makes it easier to miss class later because you have that line of communication open already.

Conversation 2: The “Imma Peace” Conversation

This is something I’ve stopped needing to do, but this was a conversation I had in high school a lot. The “Imma Peace” conversation is basically me warning teachers that sometimes I need to step out of class because of anxiety. This happened more when my anxiety was worse in high school, and now in college I can excuse myself without having to ask permission so I don’t really have this conversation with my teachers.

I call it the “Imma Peace” conversation because the signal I used in high school was a peace sign. I’d get my teacher’s attention and give them a peace sign and signal to the door, then leave. This worked because I had this in 504 plan– if you have a mental illness, chronic illness, or disability, look into getting a 504 plan. This is your way of getting accommodations!

These weren’t always easy conversations to have…

But the more I have them, the easier it is for me to do so. I generally know what I’m going to say, and I’ve literally never only had one teacher react poorly (and that was more because the issues arrived later in the semester and this was high school).

If you want any further advice about these conversations, let me know in the comments! Do you talk to your teachers at the beginning of the semester? Let me know!