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Why is it that some professors fail to establish any bond of common harmony whatsoever between themselves and the students who sit under them day after day throughout the year? The discipline of the class may be perfect, and the erudition and scholarly perfection of the professor unimpeachable, and yet there is a bond of common interest which is wanting, and which would mean success instead of failure with many an unprofitable hour spent in the lecture-room.
This deficiency of harmony, which is somewhat difficult to analyze, is more often than not the result of an unwarrantable omission on the part of the professor. Secure in his perfect knowledge of the subject, and confident of his ability as a disciplinarian, he neglects to treat his students as human beings and travellers on the same road which he himself once trod. The results are disastrous. In consequence of this assumption of an inacessible intellectual and social plane, the scholarship of the professor is naturally looked upon as senseless pedantry, while the enforcement of discipline on his consequently restless students comes to be regarded as pure callousness.
And all this is merely the result of disregarding the most elementary laws of human commonsense. A few more tokens of interest on the part of this type of professor, and a dull unwilling grind would be changed to real interest end enjoyment of the course. And yet there are always a few members on the staff of every University who fail to see that straightforward human interest and a manly attitude of give and take are of incalculably greater worth, as far as the training of students is concerned, than the most eminent record of scholarly attainment.
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