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Five Types of Tutor You’re Guaranteed to Meet at University

Five Types of Tutor You’re Guaranteed to Meet at University main image

By Lizzie Exton

Wherever you go to university and whatever you choose to study, there are five types of tutor you’re almost guaranteed to meet over the length of your course.  Some you’ll love to work with and you’ll enjoy every minute of the lectures and tutorials you have with them.  Others you’ll want to run a mile from.

If you’re already studying at uni or are about to embark on your new course this September, here are the five types of lecturers you might want to look out for.

The Happy Eccentric


It’s one of the oldest clichés in academia, but there are lots of very happy eccentrics employed in universities around the world.  They care deeply about their subject at the cost of just about everything else, but that’s what makes them so much fun to work with.  They might mutter to themselves periodically, and they might not have the greatest dress sense, but who doesn’t love the quintessential eccentric running their course?

The One Who Doesn’t Care


At the opposite end of the spectrum is the tutor who really can’t be bothered.  They’re just here for the pay check, and probably won’t care if you haven’t read the set text or don’t bother turning up to classes.  If the lecture theater was completely empty and they could just spend the hour doing their own thing they’d actually be more than happy.  Whether you pass or fail the module, they really have no interest.

The Unbelievably Attractive One


Academia has a somewhat old-fashioned reputation, and you might imagine that all your lecturers are going to be over-the-hill.  In fact, you’re almost guaranteed to come across one who has both brains and beauty, with rock star good looks which seem wholly out of place.  They appear to be ridiculously well-qualified for someone so young, and you’ll find they run some of the most well-attended lectures and seminars in the whole department. Fair warning though: it may be difficult to concentrate in this tutor’s classes, lest you get lost in their eyes…

The Strict One


The Strict Tutor is like the Happy Eccentric, but with none of the fun.  They care about their subject too much to let you make a mockery of it through failure, so they will push and push you almost to breaking point.  You will never get top marks from them because only they get top marks, so expect essays returned covered in red pen and vaguely sarcastic remarks.  Don’t bother trying to please them.  You’ll never be good enough.

The One Who Still Thinks They’re a Student


Maybe they got into tutoring because they never wanted to give up the university life, but there’s always one who still seems to think he or she is in with the students.  They often pop up in the nearby pub or, worse still, when you’re out with mates on a Saturday night.  They’re also active on every social media platform and act like you could still be best friends, but every time you see them you cringe on their behalf.

There’s at least one in every department of every university, so if you haven’t met them yet, you still have a lot to look forward to.     


Lizzie Exton writes for Inspiring Interns, which specializes in sourcing candidates for internships. To browse our graduate jobs London listings, visit our website.

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