Why Are University Professors Such Schlubs?

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


For no reason whatsoever, I am reproducing below the results of a decade-old bit of research that uses student scores from RateMyProfessor.com to construct average hotness scores for different academic disciplines. The authors used a scale from -1 to 1, which is entirely nonstandard in the field, so I’ve renormed the scores to the more generally accepted scale of 1 to 10. I assume professorial hotness is, in fact, average, which means the various disciplines should probably range from about 3 to 7. But not a single one even breaks 5.

What does this mean? University professors are slobs? 18-year-old students have really high standards? Movies and television have conditioned us to think of really hot actors as average, thus making us all disappointed with real life? I dunno. What’s your guess?

MOTHER JONES NEEDS YOUR HELP

We have about a $170,000 funding gap and less than a week to go in our hugely important First $500,000 fundraising campaign that ends Saturday. We urgently need your help, and a lot of help, so we can pay for the one-of-a-kind journalism you get from us.

Learn more in “Less Dreading, More Doing,” where we lay out this wild moment and how we can keep charging hard for you. And please help if you can: $5, $50, or $500—every gift from every person truly matters right now.

payment methods

MOTHER JONES NEEDS YOUR HELP

We have about a $170,000 funding gap and less than a week to go in our hugely important First $500,000 fundraising campaign that ends Saturday. We urgently need your help, and a lot of help, so we can pay for the one-of-a-kind journalism you get from us.

Learn more in “Less Dreading, More Doing,” where we lay out this wild moment and how we can keep charging hard for you. And please help if you can: $5, $50, or $500—every gift from every person truly matters right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate