Arriving late to class — we’ve all done it at one time or another.

For those of us who’ve perfected the art of scanning the lecture room for the nearest empty seats in 0.27 seconds, it’s a way of life. For those of us who have never felt comfortable with the concept of “Berkeley Time,” it’s a rare occurrence.

Everyone has a different style of arriving late, however. Three common variations of lateness include the “Half-Awake Stumble,” the “You Can’t See Me,” and “I-am-too-cool-to-be-on-time” styles — and we’re going to write some tips on how you can execute these arrivals in style.


“Half Awake Stumble”
This is especially prevalent in classes that occur between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. We’ve all seen it, and many of us have performed it: a student seems to fall through the lecture door and sprawl across a seat just to start nodding off again.

1) Save the parkour for the stairs next to Doe while you’re trying to stay awake long enough find a seat. We’ve seen tired students try the move where you enter a seat from standing in the row behind. A loud “BANG” as you fall forward into your seat as the class emits a collective “Ooh!” with the professor chuckling by the chalkboard is not the most pleasant wake-up call you’ll ever experience.

2) If you’re going to pull a mini-stunt anyway, at least make sure you’re three-fourths awake–maybe a few jumping jacks or slaps to the face before entering lecture will do the trick.

“You Can’t See Me”
This style of lateness actually holds the lowest risk of damage to yourself and to nearby inanimate objects, and it’s hard to botch. Students executing this move usually slip in through the classroom door and scurry into a seat – if the professor tries to stare the student down, he or she simply pretends they are invisible – “You can’t see me!”

1) If there is more than one door to the lecture hall or classroom, try to use the door that is towards the back of the room away from your professor.
2) When you step into the classroom or lecture hall, manually close the door behind you to prevent a loud “BOOM” to echo through the hall announcing your presence – which would defeat the point of your sneaky entrance. Some lecture hall and classroom doors shut pretty loudly!
3) Master the art of scanning the room for empty seats and scoping out the easiest chairs to slip into. There’s nothing like trying to squeeze awkwardly past a row of seated students without falling on them to start your morning.


Some of us are, well, just too cool to bother with sneaking into class late.

1) Try not to enter class nonchalantly when your professor is in the middle of explaining how entering class is unacceptable. Some students try to lessen the awkwardness by flashing their professor a smile–but the effect of an impish grin varies greatly from professor to professor, and do you really want to be put on the spot at 8:15 a.m. in the morning?
2) Don’t strut across the front of the podium in Wheeler Auditorium just so you can strut across the front of the podium in Wheeler Auditorium.

Finally, as a general rule for each of these late-arrival styles, make sure your phone is on silent. Especially if you have Party Rock as your ringtone or a really loud text alert. We can say this from personal experience: A few weeks ago, we were entering late to a class in 10 Evans – we had just slipped into a seat when the phone went off with a long series of beeps just so we could read a text from our friend already in class:

“Where r u?!”

Image sources: whateva87sahlgoode and jamesjustin under Creative Commons

a4338919 said:
Oct 16, 2012 at 3:11 pm

I’ve said that least 4338919 times. SKC was here…