I’m kind of surprised nobody has tried and succeeded with this before.
I think we all already know that professors are barely paying attention to their classes. And we know that most students interact with their professors only as a last resort under forced circumstances. So why hasn’t anybody really tried impersonating their professor over email before? This shouldn’t be any more difficult than “creating” a text message from a dying grandmother who needs you to skip class on Friday.
Killing off grandparents might get you an extension, but successfully impersonating your professor will get your whole class and extension…
The story is from the George Washington University Hatchet. Apparently an unknown person sent out an email to an entire environmental law class telling them that the midterm had been pushed back a week:
An environmental law class took their midterm a week later than planned this fall, after a student’s hoax email pushed off the test.
The email, obtained by The Hatchet this week, informed students that their Oct. 16 exam would be postponed in light of “scheduling conflicts.” It was signed by adjunct professor Dan Jacobs, but he later told students that he did not know who was behind it.
Students in the class said they didn’t doubt the email because it seemed to be sent from the same Blackboard format…
After students did not show up for the test, Jacobs told students on Blackboard that the exam would be held Oct. 23. He did not address the hoax to the class, [a student] said.
He added that he ran into Jacobs outside of class last week, and was told that he was going through the “proper channels” to address what happened and that someone “better be packing their suitcases.”
Mmm… adjuncts, the substitute teachers of higher education. I think somebody should sign their midterm A-Aron. This Jacobs guy seems understandably pissed, but wouldn’t you have loved to see his face as nobody showed up to the test?
And really, a professor should be in better communication with his class than this. If you are talking to kids, getting their feedback, and are generally engaged, you might get wind that they have a radically different idea of when things happen than you do. This kind of thing could only happen to a professor who rolls in, gives a speech, and rolls out again for the week. You know, like adjuncts.
In any event, I hope whoever did this covered his or her tracks. It’s a great goof, and a fun way to get an extension, but making professors look ridiculous isn’t a talent that is valued in most schools.
Hoax email from professor delays midterm [GW Hatchet]