I learned more from my smartphone than I did from my teacher

Illustration by Miles Huffman

Great teachers have more than a command of their subject. Great teachers inspire students, create comfort in the classroom and bring lectures to life.

Instructors at Chico State have exposed me to this allure of education.

Few of my high school teachers created such a learning environment, but most of my college professors do. So what about the college professors who don’t?

They have probably been tenured. How they acquired a permanent teaching position I’ll never know, but they will probably quit before they are fired.

If I had a secure job with consistent income in a youthful environment I would be hesitant to resign myself. But I don’t strive to teach or hold an exemplary position coaching California’s future working class. A professor should seriously consider what it means to be a role model.

Professors should motivate pupils to ask questions, not reprimand students for inquiring about studies during office hours.

Professors should acknowledge the world’s mobile progression rather than disregard students who efficiently use technology to accomplish assignments.

OK. So the latter refers to a specific situation in which I brought the picture of my fall semester schedule to a professor and she refused to help sort out my classes because the picture was on my phone and not printed on paper.

But that minor example proves a major point.

Anyone who cannot operate a smart phone probably shouldn’t get paid to make people smarter.

Just kidding . . . not really.

Any professor unwilling to help a student who seeks out advice should probably get a new career.

Miles Inserra can be reached at [email protected] or m_inserra on Twitter.