SJSU SLIS has official opportunities for networking (a Facebook group even), but it also has several unofficial student groups. Conveniently, these have been gathered on a Wiki for your perusal. Some things I think about when participating in student groups or professional listservs
- I Remember that they are generally public, and may be being read by my professor, future employer, or that crazy guy who lives down the street from me.
- I Remember that they are populated by my future colleagues and employers, who may remember my lack of professionalism further on down the line, just in time to not hire me.
- I Remember that “The biggest liar in the world is They Say” (Douglas Malloch), so I use good information literacy skills to judge accuracy and veracity. If in doubt, I contact the appropriate person at SLIS to clarify what other students are telling me.
- I Remember that every student is looking for different things from the program. One person’s “favorite professor ever” can be another’s “waste of time and money.” Some things I think about when reading professor reviews:
- Professors, like fine wines, get better as they age. I pay attention to how reviews change over time; sometimes problems described in earlier reviews disappear in more current ones.
- Class format has changed, so reviews of in-person classes may not apply to online teaching. Some teachers are better at one format or the other.
- Bad grades make for bitter reviewers.
- Key words or phrases help me pick professors that are suited to my learning style. I look for “active on discussion boards” and “gives a lot of feedback” because I’m interested in professors that are a little more participatory. “Best” and “worst” are less helpful.
- I take sample size into account. One or two reviews are not a good picture of collective experience.