Your Professor’s Users’ Manual #HigherEducation #highered

Your Professor’s Users’ Manual

Achim Kemmerling, WBS, Erfurt University

As any complicated, supposedly high-tech instrument your university professor comes with an instruction sheet. Please read carefully to avoid malfunctions and unnecessary wear & tear.


1.) Make an appointment for an office hour (mail to

2.) Prepare yourself before coming to the office hour.

3.) If you want to ask for a Letter of Reference follow these instructions

4.) If you would like discuss your term paper/ MA thesis: send or bring as print input as specific as possible. What’s the research/ policy questions? What literature will you look at (examples)? What methods will you use? What could be relevant findings?

5.) If you need a signature on a form/ sheet/ etc. print out the sheet and put it in my mail box. We will come back to you, if there are problems.

6.) If you need to excuse yourself for an absence, pls. email to

7.) If you want to talk about a grade pls. be aware that changing grades can only happen if there has been a factual mistake/ clerical error, but for no other reasons.

8.) If you want to talk about internships etc. please bring your CV, list of organizations you were thinking about, etc.

9.) Avoid unnecessary emails. Your professor’s brain, like any natural resource, is of limited capacity and works optimally only under careful resource management.

10.) While flattery won’t work, being kind and considerate always pays off.







Achim Kemmerling

Prof. of Public Policy and International Development

Willy Brandt School of Public Policy

Erfurt University


1 Comment

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One response to “Your Professor’s Users’ Manual #HigherEducation #highered

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