Students’ Perceptions of and Preferences for Professors

  • Accalia R. Kusto St. Louis University
  • Stephanie E. Afful Fontbonne University
  • Brent A. Mattingly Ashland University


We examined the similarity of students’ perceptions of and preferences for the behaviors of professors in three different disciplines. Undergraduate students who had taken a history, biology, or psychology class rated actual and ideal professors on 20 behaviors (e.g., disclosure of personal information). Students perceived psychology professors to be different than history and biology professors on several characteristics, despite similarity in student ratings of ideal preferences across these disciplines. We discuss implications for both professors and students regarding course evaluations and learning, respectively.


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