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WIBU to ask my lecturer out for a drink?

(40 Posts)
seashores123 Thu 02-Feb-17 00:35:18

To clarify before anyone has concerns, I'm a postgraduate student, I'm 25, he's 30.

I'm on a MA course at an institution where he also lectures undergrad students. Can't say I thought anything of it at first but I have built quite a good friendship with him and I'm starting to sense some flirtatious behaviour.

Would this be totally and utterly unreasonable? Or do you think it's ok for postgraduate/older students to date staff?

dovesong Thu 02-Feb-17 00:38:51

If he's in the position to mark any of your work I think it would be unreasonable but if he's a guest lecturer who doesn't do much on your course it sounds like it'd be ethically okay (no idea what the uni would think though!)

WildBelle Thu 02-Feb-17 00:41:47

It is massively frowned upon at my uni, no matter what the ages of the people involved are.

SugarLoveHeart Thu 02-Feb-17 00:53:58

I know somebody who married their college lecturer... Fifteen years & three kids later, it's still happily ever after!

seashores123 Thu 02-Feb-17 00:56:16

I don't want to give anything much away for obvious reasons but he will be marking/teaching me for the next month or so. He is permanent staff

Maybe I could ask if he wants to go for a drink at the end of the course. He'll probably catch my drift..

ItsAMessyLife Thu 02-Feb-17 01:05:37

Maybe I could ask if he wants to go for a drink at the end of the course. He'll probably catch my drift..

Why don't you just ask him at the end of the course?

Twogoats Thu 02-Feb-17 01:06:28

How do you know he's single?

Either way, I would hold off until you've graduated.

MrsBlennerhassett Thu 02-Feb-17 01:07:27


DoctorDoctor Thu 02-Feb-17 01:09:58

Wait till the end of the course and then ask. While you're both adults, you wouldn't want anybody to be in a position to question why you got such good marks.

seashores123 Thu 02-Feb-17 01:10:32

I know he's single because we've discussed it, we've had a few conversations at mixers etc. smile

I don't actually graduate until the end of the calendar year but I am no longer taught at the uni from April so won't be on campus iyswim

TheBeastInMsRooneysRoom Thu 02-Feb-17 01:24:09

Someone in my class married our lecturer. It wasn't weird. Nobody knew they were dating until our class finished that term, then he never taught her again and they remained a couple. It was discreet. They weren't walking around holding hands at uni, but I think they were living together for our second and third years.

FireInTheHead Thu 02-Feb-17 01:24:37

I'd wait until April in this case. It's not just about you, do you really want to potentially put him in a difficult situation in his workplace? Yes, you're a consenting adult but there's still an authority imbalance that could cause a conflict of interest re his impartiality when overseeing your work and do you want people questioning the validity of your grades? If you like him that much and he likes you - it can wait a couple of months surely.

YetAnotherSpartacus Thu 02-Feb-17 01:27:15

Just be aware that some male lecturers see screwing students as one of the perks of the job. Sometimes this is serial screwing (new term, new student) and sometimes it is longer term (yes, relationships do develop, but often they are diverted by a brighter, shinier, newer student in a couple of years). He certainly should not be seeing you socially in a one-to-one situation while he is your lecturer (unless this is professional in some way, for example you are considering him as a supervisor for a dissertation, etc.). See if you can find out anything about his reputation, before you make any moves (and I'd definitely suggest waiting until the end of the time he is marking your work). Your institution should have policy available to staff and students re staff and student relationships. It could compromise your standing as well as his if anything happens while he is marking your work (often, the policy requires the staff member to declare the relationship and ask for another marker).

DistanceCall Thu 02-Feb-17 01:29:32

If he's not in a position to mark you, yes, of course. Go ahead.

Otherwise, wait until he has marked you.

LRDtheFeministDragon Thu 02-Feb-17 01:49:28

No, don't ask. It is inappropriate. I am 32, I teach postgrads, and if one of them asked me out I would mention it to my course convenor. If they did it in a way I thought was putting me on the spot, I might ask my course convenor to have a word about appropriate behaviour (I've never had to do that, but I have with undergrads).

It's unfair to put someone in that position.

If you absolutely must, wait until you graduate.

EllaEllaE Thu 02-Feb-17 02:55:23

Nooooo! Don't do it, and ignore all the anecdotes about happy couples who have been married for decades! It may have been normal in the past -- even ten years ago. But attitudes towards faculty dating students, including postgraduate students, have changed enormously in the last few years. It is not considered appropriate at all. It would not help you win the respect of other faculty on your MA course; it is likely to be against the university's ethics rules (if not where he is now, then likely at other institutions that employ him in the future).

Also, unfortunately, you need to consider whether you plan to stay in the same field your taking your MA in. Once you get know in your professional circles as 'Dr So-and-so's student-turned-girlfriend' you'll never be known on your own professional terms. I know female academics who, many years later, still can't shake the snide insinuations that their older, male partners are the only reason they got jobs/wrote their papers. Its very unfair, and sexist, but that's the way it is.

You may be the same age, but in professional 'ages' you are in very different cohorts. Maintain a nice friendship, leave it at that.

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 02-Feb-17 02:58:29

he will be marking/teaching me for the next month or so. Absolutely no no no no. If he says no it's awkward. If he says yes it's unethical.

GinIsIn Thu 02-Feb-17 03:00:38

God, no! You can't whilst he is still responsible for grading your work. Why not just wait until after?

languagelearner Thu 02-Feb-17 04:04:46

Absolutely not if he's to grade your stuff, the drink could be considered as giving a bribe and all that....

TheDowagerCuntess Thu 02-Feb-17 04:13:34

Don't do it, and I say this as a post-grad student who briefly dated my lecturer (after the course had finished).

I look back on it and cringe. This was 20 years ago. Such a bad look. I broke it off with him, as I was leaving the country to travel anyway.

ImpetuousBride Thu 02-Feb-17 05:33:45

You'll find that your student book has a section on that - it is not just frowned upon, the university won't permit as it's unethical for obvious reasons. Doesn't matter whether you're off or on campus. Your teacher should not have encouraged long personal discussions with you, unless he doesn't want to keep his job. Asking him out once you've graduated is absolutely fine.

GreatScot8 Thu 02-Feb-17 06:05:47

I find it weird as shit, tbh.

It's definitely not on while he's involved with your course in any form. I know that this sort of thing would've been a sackable offence at my university. Once you've graduated, or they've left, by all means, but not while you're still studying/teaching in the same faculty.

BoomBoomsCousin Thu 02-Feb-17 06:30:14

I was living with one of my lecturers when I was a student. He passed my work on to a colleague to be marked, so there was no favouritism. This was a couple of decades ago now though. See if the university has a policy on student/lecturer relationships and let that guide you. He may be more reticent than that allows though, so you may be out of luck until the course is over. He may also choose a new student to flirt with each year - some do - so look out for yourself too.

MaverickSnoopy Thu 02-Feb-17 06:31:55

In the university I work at there are policies drawn up to facilitate proper teacher student relationships (this is for all students inc phd). We also have harassment officers who would get involved if it was discovered a teacher was dating a student and there would be an investigation.

I would wait until the end of your year and then ask.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 02-Feb-17 06:32:57

Not until your course is over and he's stopped marking your work. And quit the flirtatious stuff as well as he might well get the hump if he tries it on and you say you'd prefer to wait. Why jepordise your grades? It's all kinds of wrong imo and I speak as someone who has a close relative who has been married to their former student for 40 years.

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