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I am planning to apply for Ph.D programs in mathematics in U.S. and I am thinking about which professors I should ask for letters of recommendations from. In order to get "strong" letters, I need to determine which professors believe I am really strong.

Although I do well in most of my classes (I am always trying to get full marks on my homework and tests), I do have a "bad" habit of asking stupid questions frequently. I can see from the faces of professors that they dislike students who always ask stupid questions, while welcoming students to ask questions. (If you are a professor and don't think this is the case, please let me know...I really appreciate it.) I feel like professors prefer the questions that will make them have a better understanding about the subject instead of the questions that they will waste their time on.

What do professors think of a student who has good grades but always asks stupid questions? Should I expect good letters from them? Or I should go to the professors whom I seldom ask questions (but still do well in their classes)?

1 Answer 1

Well it depends on your ability on the assignments to an extent. There are people who get As because they memorize proofs and methods- a diligent track to an A. Then there are people who author their own work and really have a command of the material, coming up with their own ideas.