Classroom Faceoff: Do professors’ attire effect students’ learning in the class? – Dress down

In today’s world, first appearances can make or break your impression of someone. When a student meets a professor for the first time, the way he or she dresses can say a lot about the professor. Many people believe that professors should dress professionally and that their attire should reflect how much they care about their work and that skirts, dress pants, ties and suits are the way to go. However, some of the best educators don’t wear their Sunday best every day to class.

Professors shouldn’t have to dress up just to lecture a class. In fact, professors who dress in a smart, casual fashion give off a laid-back vibe that allows students to enjoy class more and feel comfortable. Those who dress casually appear more approachable and easier to talk to. They seem less stern, strict and intimidating in comparison to other professors who wear three-piece suits every day. It can be scary and nerve-wracking enough to ask your professor a question. Having him or her appear less intimidating often allows a student’s nerves to dissipate.

Students can be seen wearing everything ranging from sweats to business outfits. They are free to wear whatever they feel comfortable in. Here at Rider there aren’t any dress codes or guidelines to follow.

Therefore, professors shouldn’t feel compelled to dress in formal suits or any other business wear if they don’t wish to wear them in class. Professors decide how to teach and run classes: their wardrobe should be up to their discretion, within reason.

However, there is a fine line between dressing casually and teaching in a sweatshirt and yoga pants. Dressing semi-casually is a happy medium between looking sloppy and dressing in business attire. If you’re going to be on your feet all day long, you might as well be comfortable.

Dressing more professionally does not necessarily make you a better educator compared to those who choose to dress down for the classroom. It is simply a matter of preference for professors. The best professor out there could be dressed casually.

Professors should be able to dress however they please and they shouldn’t be forced to do otherwise. It’s all about being comfortable and if students are allowed to dress down for class, professors should have that option as well.

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