Educators question RateMyProfessor annual college rankings

More than 1 million professors are rated on RateMyProfessor.

Can 10 million college students be wrong? The popular site RateMyProfessor released its 2010-11 rankings April 26 – naming the top university and professors – as many in higher education remain skeptical of the site and said students shouldn’t base their school choices on RateMyProfessor’s reviews.

Students on RateMyProfessor, which compiles anonymous student ratings and written reviews of more than 1 million professors and instructors on 6,500 campuses, named Brigham Young University (BYU) the nation’s top school.

Florida State University, the University of Wisconsin – Madison, the University of Michigan, the University of Georgia, and the University of California Berkeley rounded out the website’s top-five ranking for the 2010-11 academic year.

Fullerton College in Fullerton, Calif. was rated the country’s best junior college on RateMyProfessor, followed by Santa Rosa Junior College in California, and Valencia Community College in Florida.

David Mease, a business professor at San Jose University, was voted RateMyProfessor’s top professor. And in a category that names the “hottest” college educator of the year, George Washington University creative writing professor Daniel Gutstein took home the title.

Professors and instructors have long disparaged RateMyProfessor as nothing more than a sounding board for frustrated students publicly airing their grievances and grinding axes in the internet’s anonymous public square.

In interviews with eCampus News, educators said they would encourage prospective college students to avoid RateMyProfessor, or view the site’s annual college rankings with a skeptical eye.

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