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​Professor With Tenure Still Doesn’t Know to Let Students Leave Ten Minutes Early


Photo by Christopher Michel / CC 2.0

Students in Professor Timothy Romanov’s “Philosophy of Why You Text ‘lol’ When You Aren’t Actually Laughing out Loud” agree that the class is “mostly, pretty ok.” On PennCourseReview, the Course and Professor Received fairly solid (but not amazing) 2.98’s, while the class was rated only a 2.12 for difficulty.

But members of the class have one hang-up: despite the fact that Romanov has been teaching at Penn for 48 years, he is seemingly unaware of the rule that classes end 10 minutes early to allow travel time between classrooms.

Abbey MacFarland, a student in Romanov’s 3-4:30pm section, described the problem. “The first time I check my phone to see how much longer it will be until class is over, it’s only around 3:25. The next time, 3:34. Then, I wait a little, but the next time I look it’s 3:47. Then I think, ugh, why is this class so slow?”

“So it’s 4:18, my notebook is halfway in my backpack, the the professor is like ‘uh, I think we have plenty of time to start a new topic that will probably be on the midterm,’” MacFarland recounted. “And halfway through, he decides to tell us a story from his personal life that really made everyone uncomfortable. It’s like, how are you and your first wife’s marital problems relevant to ‘Chapter 4: Why It’s Okay to Stop Texting Someone if They Have an Android’? Unless she had an Android, I guess.”

“By the time he’s finished, it’s 4:30. Sometimes even later, if David gets to ask any questions towards the end.”

We asked Romanov what he thought of Penn’s scheduling policy. “I’m pretty sure if you look on the pennintouch website, it says that class goes until 4:30. I'm not going to just throw away 10 minutes!" he said. "Do you know a student named David, by the way? He seems like kind of a twerp.”

After a brief survey, we discovered that over 87% of the students in Romanov’s class did not actually have a class to get to afterwards.