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Oct. 19, 2007
CONTACT: Pamela Young

EMU's Citino ranked number one professor in the country

YPSILANTI - German history isn’t just a course that Robert Citino teaches.  It’s his livelihood and passion. That passion and his love of teaching have now paid off for the Eastern Michigan University professor.

Citino, 49, was recently named the highest rated professor in America by ratemyprofessors.com, an online student rating services.

The first RateMyProfessors.com Top 50 Rankings lists featured Citino as the “highest rated and hottest college professor.”

“I don’t know if I’m even the best teacher in Ypsilanti, but this is quite pleasing,” said Citino, an internationally known military historian. I found out about the honor from a student and then it appeared in USA Today.”

Students cited Citino for his lectures and enthusiasm.  A few comments were “I love it when he lectures because he makes it interesting;” “He keeps you interested and makes me want to learn more when class is over;” and “He’s an excellent professor. He has impeccable lectures and is extremely helpful outside of the classroom. No one at EMU should miss the opportunity to take one of his classes.”

“He is the best professor I have ever seen,” said Martin B. Shichtman, professor of English, who co-teaches a class with Citino. “He is exceedingly smart, quick on his feet and very charismatic. He’s also very disciplined and organized, and the students love him.”

The war years of 1939-1945 may seem long ago, said Citino, but there is no doubt that students are interested in this time period. 

His classes include “Hitler’s Germany;” “Modern German History 1815 to present,” and “Culture and the Holocaust,” which he teaches with colleagues, Joanna Scott, a professor of political science, and Shichtman.

“Students select these classes. There is a huge interest in this era,” said Citino, who became interested in the period when he was younger. “I think that generation is passing away and it affects students and adults. The American perspective about that war was seen in black and white. It was much clearer then than it is today.”

Although Citino spends a lot of time in the classroom, he’s also an internationally known author of eight books about the German military and has appeared as an expert on the History Channel. His last four books were featured as selections of the Military History Book Club and the History Book Club.

“My scholarly field is what the German army brought to war. I try to narrate events so that even a non-specialist can follow. I think I provide meat for the scholars and good reading for everyone else,” he said. “There was drama in the early years of World War II. The German army uncorked a run of victories not seen since Napoleon. It is still hard to wrap your mind around it. Then, it fell apart in 1942 and it never won another appreciable victory.”

Citino’s latest book, “Death of the Wehrmacht: The German Campaigns of 1942”, was recently released.  He’ll be signing copies of his book Nov. 9, 6:30 p.m., at the Motte Bailey Book Store, 212 N. 4th Ave. in Ann Arbor.


Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their career and lives, and to be better citizens.

Editor's Note: Looking for an expert source for a story? Check out EMU's Eastern Experts online at www.emich.edu/univcomm/easternexperts.

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