I'm a Maths university student and I just can't seem to learn anything from one of my lecturers.

I understand we, as students, should do personal research on our subject. But he just doesn't make any sense. He'll teach one thing, then during that, he'll RANDOMLY pull out something out of the blue WITH NO EXPLANATION. Not even a "Well we do this because...".

He explains new concepts, like he's talking to PhD graduates.

I've spoken to him about it and all he says is "He loves teaching".

I've already failed 2 of his module exams because of this and am having to resit them.

What can I do?

  • 1
    Conduct research independently.
    – Tobi
    Commented Jan 30, 2017 at 23:20
  • 6
    The first time this happened to me was when I was forced to truly learn how to read a math textbook for the first time. That became among my most powerful and important skills later on. Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 0:25
  • 2
    Is your experience with this lecturer shared by others, including students from different classes or different years?
    – user67075
    Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 4:04
  • Ask questions. If no one else asks, be the one to break the ice - it will benefit everyone. Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 7:06
  • 1
    @MaxEchendu : this is a difficult situation that can't be resolved without full knowledge of all the variables. I would suggest you seek the advice of the chair of the home unit of the instructor. The chair will naturally try to protect the instructor so you will need to take a deep breath and make sure you don't come across as confrontational or exasperated and put the blame entirely on the instructor. You might arrange a meeting with the chair to discuss tutoring/mentoring, either through the unit or by outside means. If you can bring other students in a similar predicament do so.
    – user67075
    Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 13:38

1 Answer 1


Here are some ideas for you to consider.

  • Seek out a more advanced student who has already made it through the course, for guidance.

  • If the class has a TA, visit the TA's office hours assiduously.

  • If the course has a textbook, read it carefully. If it doesn't, ask the professor for a textbook that is reasonably well aligned with his approach.

  • Make sure you have a course syllabus. See if a careful perusal of the syllabus helps.

  • If you have an advisor or mentor professor, let him or her know. If you don't have one, try to find one, by talking to another professor in the department that you think may be knowledgeable about the course content.

  • Let a department administrator know about your difficulties.

  • Consider withdrawing from the class.

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