Ability to get a Recommendation letter / other career success often requires good perception by teachers. But when a large number of professors aren't very insightful, they tend to prioritise traits like politeness, diplomacy and sociability. In other hand, there are a little number of students seem to excruciatingly truthful but they appear to be very restless, clumsy, noisy, struggling with studies, yet hyperfocused into a topic, and can be bluntly direct, may be unable to 'read in between the lines', may not recognise professor's tone or body language, may interrupt within talk. (Maybe this is undiagnosed ADHD or some other kind of behavioural disorders). In such cases; especially when the student doesn't have a medical diagnosis; what should be ideally the perception of the student in Academic community?

And if not ideally; how does the present academia see such deviant or divergent behaviours?

In my locale, in several universities this kind of 'divergent' behaviour is seen as wilfull disrespect to the authority, indiscipline, bad manners, rulebreaker, untrustworthy or dangerous; and in my life I haven't seen anysuch student is being practically selected for independent research work in good places.

2 Answers 2


A professional academic wouldn't make assumptions but seek evidence. One could ask students in private about medical questions or disruptive behavior, but a student need not reply (in some places, anyway).

But, it is hard to change culture if that is the issue and you are being accurate in your assessment of the local situation. Such issues can be self reinforcing.

There are also situations in which the sheer scale of courses is such that it is nearly impossible to take individual differences into account. Dealing with 25 individuals is possible, 250 not so much. Institutional solutions are then required.

But, to turn it around, if a student with any health issue affecting their academic behavior or performance knows of their condition (not all do) then they should consider an appropriate set of actions. That might include talking to the professor or having an intermediary do so. But many universities also have an office with people trained to handle such issues.

  • I have a limited sample and such students are rare. So I didnt put an assessment. Its just an observation that too few such people I know, was treated badly in academia. May 28, 2022 at 13:06

According to a review; ADHD symptoms and the teacher–student relationship: a systematic literature review , by Linda Plantin Ewe; https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/citedby/10.1080/13632752.2019.1597562?scroll=top&needAccess=true

Thus, teachers experience less emotional closeness, less co-operation and more conflicts in their relations with their students with ADHD than with other students. Teachers’ rejection of ADHD students poses a risk factor for not only school failure, but also peer exclusion and rejection, leading to low self-esteem and loneliness.

However this says more at school settings than higher ed.

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