50 Fun Things Todo In A Final Exam (That Does Not Matter)

(i.e. you are going to fail the class completely no matter what you get on the final exam) Bring a pillow. Fall asleep (or pretend to) until the last 15 minutes. Wake up, say “oh geez, better get cracking” and do some gibberish work. Turn it in a few minutes … Continue reading

What Professors Really Mean

If you get the feeling that professors live in a world of their own, you’re right. They even have a language all their own When professors say this They really mean this This needs some minor revision. I never actually got around to reading this. My office hours are by … Continue reading

Top 10 Things Professors Say (and what they really mean!)

What the Progessor Says What they mean 10% of your grade is based on class participation. You are putty in my hands. The tests are all true & false and multiple choice. Questions are straight from the study guide and grad students grade everything. Do not come to class in … Continue reading

The Top 10 Things I Added To “Beast” (my computer)

Beast is my i386DX-25. It will soon be FreeBSD. Vanity mirror 32 GB Ultra-wide SCSI hard drive (yeah, right) 51″ monitor Cup holder that says “8X” Commodore 64 emulator A REAL mouse (It wiggles all over the place when I plug its tail in) Class A IP subnet An IPng … Continue reading

Top 10 Things I’m Doing On Spring Break

Hacking root on Keystone and performing a kill -9 1 Contemplating why the college is raising tuition by 6%…oops…we’re not supposed to know that yet… Deciphering the secret language spoken by Kenny on South Park Leading a commando unit to capture the Rolling Rock brewery in Latrobe Badgering Westmoreland Online … Continue reading

50 Fun Things for Professors ToDo on the First Day of Class

===================================================== 50 Fun Things for Professors to Do on the First Day of Class ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ 1. Wear a hood with one eyehole. Periodically make strange gurgling noises. 2. After confirming everyone’s names on the roll, thank the class for attending “Advanced Astrodynamics 690” and mention that yesterday was the last … Continue reading

it’s that time again

And it came to pass. Early in the morning, toward the last day of the semester. There arose a great multitude, smiting the books and wailing, And there was much weeping and gnashing of teeth, For the day of judgement was at hand. And they were afraid, for they had … Continue reading

You Know You’re a Grad Student When…

You just might be a grad student if: you can identify universities by their internet domains. you are constantly looking for a thesis in novels. you have difficulty reading anything that doesn’t have footnotes. you understand jokes about Foucoult. the concept of free time scares you. you consider caffeine to … Continue reading

University Course Evaluation Comments

A friend of mine goes to Brown University. They have a publication there called “The Critical Review.” A section has student comments on a class. Here are some of the more humorous:   Insights from Student Surveys: “He spoke, I had no clue, it was as mutal relationship.” “The book was written … Continue reading

List of Bart Simpsons’ Blackboard Quotations

Episode numbers indicate the blackboard scene used when the episode was shown for the first time; in some cases, the one used in Canada is listed where it was “original” and the USA one was repeated. Note that all quotes were originally in all capital letters, but any punctuation appears … Continue reading


1. Because he had only one major publication. 2. It was in a foreign journal. 3. It had no references. 4. It wasn’t published in a refereed journal. 5. Questions about authenticity. 6. What has He published since? 7. His cooperative efforts have been very limited. 8. The scientific community … Continue reading

Getting the Attention Of The Class

Getting and keeping students’ attention, particularly as the semester wears on, is always a problem. I offer my colleagues the following method whereby I gain attention from the first moments of class, and regain it at any time during the year. Purchase one of those ‘gourmet’ candy canes from the … Continue reading

write with your other hand

The teacher had given the class an assignment. He stresses the importance of this particular assignment, and that no excuses will be accepted except illness (with a medical certificate) or a death in the immediate family (with a note from that member). A smart-ass student pipes up: “What about extreme … Continue reading

perspective on finals

Math Final The setting is Ohio State University about six or seven years ago in a huge lecture hall (approximately 1000 students) for a Calculus final. Apparently this particular calculus teacher (unlike our beloved professor Bonk) wasn’t very well liked. He was one of those guys who would stand at … Continue reading

Course evaluations….(G)

Taken From the MIT Course Evaluation Guide, Fall, 1991 The Best and Worst Comments Received ==================================== “This class was a religious experience for me… I had to take it all on faith.” “Text makes a satisfying `thud’ when dropped on the floor.” “[The class] is worthwhile because I need it … Continue reading

The evolution of math education

HOW TO SPOT OUTCOME-BASED EDUCATION Math Quiz: In 1960: A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is four fifths the price. What is his profit? In 1970 (traditional math): A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 … Continue reading

Where is Jesus?

A Sunday School teacher of pre-schoolers was concerned that his students might be a little confused about Jesus Christ because of the Christmas season emphasis on His birth. He wanted to make sure they understood that the birth of Jesus occurred a long time ago, that He grew up, etc. … Continue reading

2nd Graders Drawing

There was a class of second graders. For their assignment, the teacher decided that they would draw a class picture, where each pupil draws something on the picture, then hands it to the next pupil who will Add to it. So the teacher starts off by giving the blank sheet … Continue reading

Lightbulbs in the 90s

Q: How many IUS folks does it take to change a light bulb? A: IUS has received your request concerning your hardware problem, and has assigned your request Ticket Number 39712. Please use this number for any future reference to this light bulb issue. As soon as a technician becomes … Continue reading

Academic talk (offensive to professors)

What the professor means By J. Timothy Petersik from the Chronicle of Higher Education Says: You’ll be using one of the leading textbooks in the field. Means: I used it as a grad student. Says: If you follow these few simple rules, you’ll do fine in the course. Means: If … Continue reading


A physics professor was very strict about attendance, and despised tardiness. Every student caught arriving to class late (especially those interrupting his lecture) was quickly reprimanded in front of the whole class. Students were quick to comment on the professor’s genetics. Well, one day a student entered through the front … Continue reading

it’s that time once again

Taken From the MIT Course Evaluation Guide, Fall, 1991 The Best and Worst Comments Received ==================================== “This class was a religious experience for me… I had to take it all on faith.” “Text makes a satisfying ‘thud’ when dropped on the floor.” “[The class] is worthwhile because I need it … Continue reading

Top 20 Uses For Data’s Detached Head

Combination paperweight/stapler for Picard’s desk The ball in Parisis’ Squares Hood ornament for Shuttle craft Replace Troi’s broken Chia Pet Scare blind students in Braille class Prop open doors for maintenance crews Lawn decoration in Arboreteum Footstool for Captain’s chair entertaining kids in day care puppet show Scare Alexander into … Continue reading

Seniors vs. Freshmen

College Seniors vs. Freshmen ============================== Freshmen: Are never in bed past noon. Seniors: Are never out of bed before noon. Freshmen: Read the syllabus to find out what classes they can cut. Seniors: Read the syllabus to find out what classes they need to attend. Freshmen: Brings a can of … Continue reading