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Professor Rating Websites?

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    Hi, I'm an international student (from the U.S.) who has recently accepted an offer to pursue an MA programme at SOAS. I went to a fairly prestigious school here in the states for my undergraduate studies; I credit my success at my former school on the website http://ratemyprofessors.com . The website, as it's name suggests, is a tool for students to read up on professors that they are contemplating taking a course with. Essentially, you look at the reviews for these professors left by their former students, you then decide whether or not you feel you would like to take that course, with that professor. In this way, you can avoid professors that most of the student body dislikes. This thread is pretty much my long-winded way of asking whether or not a site like this exists for UK professors, I'm sure it does, but I want the 'best' one. It's even more imperative for me to use a site like this now as I cannot even go to the school and survey my new academic family properly. I would appreciate any help that can be given. Thanks.
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    Considering the vicious, untrue and exaggerated 'reviews' left on ratmyteachers.com, I would never trust what I read on these sites.

    As it turns out, it seems the US site has British universities on it, albeit with less professors and less ratings. HERE's SOAS.

    I don't know of any other UK equivalents sorry, but I also doubt whether this is the most effective way of assessing what your academic experience will be like!
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    (Original post by Stilo)
    Hi, I'm an international student (from the U.S.) who has recently accepted an offer to pursue an MA programme at SOAS. I went to a fairly prestigious school here in the states for my undergraduate studies; I credit my success at my former school on the website http://ratemyprofessors.com . The website, as it's name suggests, is a tool for students to read up on professors that they are contemplating taking a course with. Essentially, you look at the reviews for these professors left by their former students, you then decide whether or not you feel you would like to take that course, with that professor. In this way, you can avoid professors that most of the student body dislikes. This thread is pretty much my long-winded way of asking whether or not a site like this exists for UK professors, I'm sure it does, but I want the 'best' one. It's even more imperative for me to use a site like this now as I cannot even go to the school and survey my new academic family properly. I would appreciate any help that can be given. Thanks.
    Hurm, does you former Uni have a lot of sections for a particular subject? For example; Subject X would have 5 sections and 3 different lecturers would be teaching it?
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    (Original post by Dusty12)
    Considering the vicious, untrue and exaggerated 'reviews' left on ratmyteachers.com, I would never trust what I read on these sites.

    As it turns out, it seems the US site has British universities on it, albeit with less professors and less ratings. HERE's SOAS.

    I don't know of any other UK equivalents sorry, but I also doubt whether this is the most effective way of assessing what your academic experience will be like!
    :ditto:
    At most, what that site can tell you is whether someone is universally (un)popular or whether they polarise. That in itself may be interesting to know, but it hardly tells you whether someone's a good teacher and whether you would want to be taught by them. Not to mention that the ratings are bound to be skewed by the fact that a lot of people won't bother to rate their tutors unless they either loved them or hated them. Plus the sample sizes (i.e. the numbers of reviews per person) on the site are also really small even for US universities, never mind UK ones, so this isn't even a reliable measure of how popular somebody is with the student body in general.:erm:
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    :ditto:
    At most, what that site can tell you is whether someone is universally (un)popular or whether they polarise. That in itself may be interesting to know, but it hardly tells you whether someone's a good teacher and whether you would want to be taught by them. Not to mention that the ratings are bound to be skewed by the fact that a lot of people won't bother to rate their tutors unless they either loved them or hated them. Plus the sample sizes (i.e. the numbers of reviews per person) on the site are also really small even for US universities, never mind UK ones, so this isn't even a reliable measure of how popular somebody is with the student body in general.:erm:
    Strange, if you twist some of what you mentioned, this could apply to the league tables, and people still use them to 'measure' and 'decide' the best Unis in the world :erm:
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    (Original post by kka25)
    Strange, if you twist some of what you mentioned, this could apply to the league tables, and people still use them to 'measure' and 'decide' the best Unis in the world :erm:
    No, league tables are problematic because they have to massively oversimplify matters in order to express complex things in clear numbers that can be ranked, so they do things like equate staff to student ratio with teaching quality, and so on. That's a different situation.
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    Sounds pretty awful to me too, and I think you could miss out on some great teaching or lectures as a result. I know some lecturers are popular for good reason (e.g. my personal tutor is all-round awesome, makes Russian grammar classes genuinely comprehensible and enjoyable [can take some doing ], lectures really well in her area of research, is always willing to help students etc.). But then my favourite module I've ever taken was done by a lecturer who's not particularly popular among my coursemates - yeah he's a bit slow and you need to put more effort in yourself to engage with the material with him, but the subject matter itself was fascinating to me, and if you put the effort in doing all the reading and stuff and actually listening to the guy like I did then you could really get tons out of the module and for me that module was just as worthwhile as any other I've taken, probably even more so because I enjoyed it so much (banned books in the Soviet Union :love:).

    Also, do you really want to credit all your success to your lecturers? Yeah, they're important, but surely you're the one doing all the main work?




    Off-topic: hi kka! :hi:
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    (Original post by kka25)
    Hurm, does you former Uni have a lot of sections for a particular subject? For example; Subject X would have 5 sections and 3 different lecturers would be teaching it?
    Yeah, something like this. So a course like 'Introduction to American History' would be taught by 4 different professors concurrently. I would have friends who would be taking the same course as me, at the same time, albeit with a different professor, and from conversation I would find out that they would perhaps have to do less essays than me, or take less tests, etc. Depending on the professor the manner in which a course progresses can vary greatly, I've learned.
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    (Original post by Dusty12)
    Considering the vicious, untrue and exaggerated 'reviews' left on ratmyteachers.com, I would never trust what I read on these sites.

    As it turns out, it seems the US site has British universities on it, albeit with less professors and less ratings. HERE's SOAS.

    I don't know of any other UK equivalents sorry, but I also doubt whether this is the most effective way of assessing what your academic experience will be like!
    Wow, I had no idea there were even British Universities on ratemyprofessors. I think I'm still going to take the time to look at ratemyteachers; from what you've said it seems not to be much different that ratemyprofessors.

    Also, I don't know if this is relevant, but the only British professor I had was very easy, this guy http://www.ratemyprofessors.com/Show...jsp?tid=547135.
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    snip..
    That's why I said "twist"..

    (Original post by superwolf)

    Off-topic: hi kka! :hi:
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    (Original post by Stilo)
    Yeah, something like this. So a course like 'Introduction to American History' would be taught by 4 different professors concurrently. I would have friends who would be taking the same course as me, at the same time, albeit with a different professor, and from conversation I would find out that they would perhaps have to do less essays than me, or take less tests, etc. Depending on the professor the manner in which a course progresses can vary greatly, I've learned.
    Yup. I don't think most Unis in the UK have that sort of system - even if they have it, I doubt they would have it for PGs. So you're at a considerable disadvantage.

    And I agree with you; whatever it is, the lecturer will determine the (significant) progress you'll make. Lousy lecturers == Lousy (standard of) students.
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    (Original post by Stilo)
    Wow, I had no idea there were even British Universities on ratemyprofessors. I think I'm still going to take the time to look at ratemyteachers; from what you've said it seems not to be much different that ratemyprofessors.

    Also, I don't know if this is relevant, but the only British professor I had was very easy, this guy http://www.ratemyprofessors.com/Show...jsp?tid=547135.
    Yes, take your time and ask around! Gather all the info and proceed. Don't go just because you heard from a single source.

    Lecturers can make even the hardest subject a joy or make the easiest subject hell - you know this, I know it. Get feedback!
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    (Original post by kka25)
    That's why I said "twist"..
    It's a separate matter, though. You can't turn an apple into an orange by 'twisting' it, can you?:hmmmm:

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