Originally Answered: Attention College Students: what do you want out of your math professor?
Once you get your student evaluations back, assuming you have never taught before, you'll find that students mostly want easy homework (and quizzes, and tests, and...). This seems to instill a false sense of knowing what they are doing, so that when they take the exams and screw them up if the questions aren't essentially recycled homework problems, they can complain about the exams being too hard and get a scale (curve) put on the grades. Oh, and you of course cannot assume that they remember what they have been taught earlier in the present term or in previous terms. You must give them constant reminders on everything, as you would a child. And be sure to have review sessions where you show up and re-teach them how to do everything that they have forgotten over the term (and previous ones, as necessary).
Asking students how you should teach is like asking prison inmates how they should be guarded. If you are in a position to teach a college course, then you have been a student yourself and have been in plenty of classes. Most likely, you've also had some sort of teacher training. You probably have a good idea of what works already, as in what is good for the students *in the long run*. That is, not what makes your kids like you today, but what makes them understand and recall what you've taught them later. Luckily, there are many experienced professors/lecturers/teachers at colleges and universities; these are the people you should probably be seeking advice from.
I've taught classes myself at the college level in mathematics. It seems to me that students seem to think that college is just more years of high school. What I mean by that is that high school teachers are paid to raise the performance level of their students. Their job is to cater to the least common denominator and make sure everyone learns. That is *not* the job of a college professor/lecturer. While the high school teacher is responsible in a very real sense for *making* their students learn (via passing the many standardized tests), it is the job of a college professor/lecturer to *help* their students learn. This subtle but very important difference puts most of the responsibility on the sudents. Students, of course, do not like this. But what, in the long run, helps our students more? Getting students to like you by doing all the things (and more) that I list in the first paragraph, or challenging them, forcing them, to remember what they have learned by holding them accountable and expecting them to work on and think about and solve the harder problems rather than exclusively assigning the rote computations?
Be nice, be personable, and absolutely be available with office hours and appointments for your students when they seek help outside of class. But it is *their* responsibility to take advantage of that effort. If they want a review session for an exam, make them earn it. If you don't have students asking questions during the term, if you don't have students coming to office hours, then they must either understand the material, and hence can review on their own for exams, or they don't care enough to learn it the first time and just want you to cram it into their head before an exam. (It is your responsibility to make an atmosphere that is comfortable enough for them to ask questions, however.) The students in the latter situation certainly do not deserve your extra effort for a review session since they have not been putting forth effort of their own.
The schools tell these students that they are adults. It is driven home very soundly during most orientations that they have all these rights because they are legally adults. If that is really the view of the school, then it is our responsibility to treat the students accordingly by expecting them to bear the bulk of the responsibility for their performance. We are doing them no favors by requiring less accountability than their future employers will require of them.