Senior lecturer’s classroom comedy conquers the Twittersphere


Brian Cooper, geography senior lecturer, talked about why he loves twitter, Jan. 25.
Photo by Lexi Altschul | Staff Photographer

Diana Furman

Scrolling through Twitter, the last thing a student would expect to see is a tweet from a professor asking for gluten-free, vegan tide pod recipes in the wake of syllabus week.

Brian Cooper, geography senior lecturer, challenges those norms with his joke-packed, student-friendly Twitter account, @BrianCooperGeo.

After graduating from Clemson University, Cooper attended graduate school at Texas State. He began teaching at Texas State in the summer of 2003 as a graduate assistant and within three years was hired as a full-time lecturer.

Currently in his 11 year as a senior lecturer at Texas State, Cooper has made a habit of spiking student interest with his uncommonly hilarious and lively classroom settings.

In 2016, Cooper created his Twitter account after becoming disgruntled with Facebook. It quickly became his preferred social media outlet and a place where he gets news updates and can take out his “mental garbage.”

Cooper said his humorous tweets are to satiate his odd, comical thoughts. Twitter has become an outlet for him to share his imaginative jokes in a casual manner.

Cooper said he has carried a strong sense of humor with him throughout his life. His mother even wrote in a high school graduation letter to him that she hoped he would never lose his ability to find the humor in life, even in his toughest times. He said laughter is especially important to him in the classroom.

“If it made you laugh, chances are you’re probably going to remember it,” Cooper said.

Laughter creates a gripping atmosphere and receptiveness in students. Cooper said he finds once he gets students laughing, the more likely they are to relax and enjoy the material.

Nicole Dodge, international studies junior, was in Cooper’s class last semester and chose to enroll with him again. Dodge woke up at 8:00 a.m. on registration day solely to secure a seat in his class.

“Coming to his class lightens my day,” Dodge said. “His humor keeps you on your feet and it helps me retain so much information.”

Dodge said despite Cooper’s large lecture classes, within the first two weeks he knows all of his students by name.

Last spring, a few of his students discovered his hilarious Twitter account. After that, his profile blew up with hundreds of retweets on his funniest posts and a large student following. Cooper’s Twitter became a way for him to bridge the gap between students and professors.

“I honestly can’t think of two things I care less about than whether Kylie Jenner is pregnant or if the Jonas Brothers are getting back together,” Cooper said. “But that’s why I love Twitter. It helps me relate to students, understand where they’re coming from and what interests them right now.”

Mollie Price, public relations junior, said she always feels treated as an individual and important in Cooper’s classroom setting. Price said his Twitter lends to how Cooper gets to know his students and following him has made her feel like she can relate to him. Price said she feels more comfortable in his classroom because Cooper knows who she is and vice versa.

“He wished me happy birthday on Twitter,” Price said. “It was pretty funny and cool to have a professor do that.”

Cooper said he has a strict follow back policy. He doesn’t think what he has to say is any more or less important than the thoughts of his students.

“The way I see it, if you’re interested in what I have to say, then I’m interested in what you have to say,” Cooper said. “I’ve found so much value in what my students have to tweet as well.”

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