College professors can ruin good days with bad test scores,

eliminate weekend plans with homework assignments and set back

dreams with poor letter grades. Students now hold a small taste of

this power via a website.

" "> allows

college students to grade their professors online. Representatives

of the website hosted a booth Wed., Oct. 8 in the MU quad.

At the website, students can anonymously rate professors on

their helpfulness, clarity, difficulty of classes and even physical

attractiveness. Many students also leave personal opinions of the

professors and the courses they teach.

Founder of the website, John Swapceinski, started his project in

1999. At the time he was attending San Jose State University to

receive a master's in Computer Science.

"While there, I had a professor who was a real ogre and an

unfair grader. I decided to start the website to warn others of

professors like her," Swapceinski said.

The purpose of the website is to be a resource for students by


The website says it "gives you a place to make a difference in

your education."

" "> has

1,065,420 ratings on 236,294 professors. There are currently 373

professors rated at Oregon State University.

Oregon State's highest rated professor is Professor Linda

Bruslind, with an overall rating of 5.0, from the Department of


Some comments this professor received include "lots of

memorization" and "easy follow along packet for lectures."

Some teachers have a red chili pepper icon by their names

indicating how "hot" they are.

Professor Richard Nafshun from the chemistry department has a

red chili pepper icon by his rating profile. Some comments from his

reviews include "he's a chemistry nerd but a really funny one,"

"fun class" and "look alike of Ben Stiller, but hotter."

" "> has

received complaints from professors. Swapceinski says he gets

"threatened with legal action by angry professors on pretty much a

daily basis."

The site receives about 400,000 visitors per month.

Comments are regulated; the website says that every rating is

reviewed before it is posted. The owners do reserve the right to

delete comments or entire ratings. Swapceinski has received serious

legal action from displeased professors, but says that none of the

reviews will be removed from the website.


Stacy Austin covers campus news for The Daily Barometer.

she can be reached at


or at 737-2232.

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