To check their understanding or simply for
clarification, students often wish to ask their teacher or
instructor questions during class. However, many students
would rather not ask in class because they may be concerned
about being embarrassed, or concerned about slowing the class
For the benefit of everyone in the class,
especially for the benefit of the asking student, students
should not hesitate to ask meaningful questions during a
lecture or presentation.
Don’t be overly concerned about embarrassing
yourself in the eyes of the teacher. Throughout the teacher’s
career, the teacher has been asked questions in class which
are probably far more embarrassing than yours may be.
Furthermore, don’t be too sensitive about
embarrassing yourself in the eyes of your class mates,
especially your friends. In all likelihood, the other students
in the class have a question similar to yours, and they may
admire or respect you for having the courage to ask in class.
As well, your question may benefit the students who had not
thought of it.
An instructor may not answer your question
immediately. Don’t view this as an indication that your
question is not important, or that it may waste important
class time. Your question may be answered by subsequent
material presented during that class, or perhaps the
instructor is waiting for a more relevant and appropriate
class time to respond to your question.
In addition, some instructors purposely set
aside brief time periods, throughout their lecture, to deal
with questions. Keep in mind that the instructor may choose to
discuss your question with you after class, perhaps even in
Both the teacher, and the students, benefit
a great deal from students’ questions during class. Most
teachers welcome and appreciate students’ questions in class
primarily because such questions guide the instructor toward a
better presentation, and improved delivery of the lecture.
The asking student, moreover, will
ultimately be rewarded with improved comprehension and greater
clarity of the material being taught. So if you have a
question in class that is important to you, a question that
will help you learn—so you can understand better— then don’t
be fearful, go ahead and ask!
For reference and for further details, check
A Line on Life (How to Flunk)
Do you never ask questions in class?
Student afraid to ask for help