Education: How to Get The Most Out of Office Hours

At the beginning of most college courses, professors will note their office hour schedule; then they might joke about how rarely anyone shows up. They might suggest you go just to introduce yourself. But what do you talk about with professors you just met? Below are some tips to get the most out of office hours:

1) Come up with questions

Even for a casual chat, formulate questions about the homework or lecture that start a conversation, whether it’s something you didn’t understand or something you want to know more about. Make them specific. If you’re struggling in class, pinpoint the exact areas that give you trouble.

2) Be prepared

Write down your questions so you don’t forget them. If you’re planning on referencing a quote or statistic, have it bookmarked. Meet with the professor well before a big exam/assignment. Get to the office early if it’s the day before that big assignment.

3) Make yourself known

If there’s already someone with the professor, you might have to wait outside. Sit somewhere that’s visible to the professor so they don’t amble in their discussion. Plus, if more students show up, they’ll know it’s your turn next.

Contributor: Celeste Montaño


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