American Pie 2 (2001)
The Lesson: Don’t schedule a bout of hanky-panky for the morning your parents are due to pick you up. And if you do, remember to lock the door.
The Teacher: Poor old Jim, who inadvertently invites his dad in to hold forth on the joys of mating while his horrified bedmate makes a mental note never to speak to him again.
The Paper Chase (1973)
The Lesson: Leave your lecturer’s daughter well alone, especially if the guy is a total asshole.
The Teacher: Timothy Bottoms plays James Hart, a first-year law student who falls head over heels for the daughter of his hard-ass professor. You can kiss that 2:1 goodbye, chum…
Back To School (1986)
The Lesson: Do not allow your father to enrol at the same university as you, no matter how well-meaning his intentions. It will be embarrassing.
The Teacher: Keith Gordon, who has the additional handicap of having Rodney Dangerfield as the dad in question. Yikes.
The Graduate (1967)
The Lesson: Recently graduated students are like catnip to attractive, older women. An affair with the neighbourhood cougar is a given.
The Teacher: Stuttering, stammering Dustin Hoffman, whose newly acquired status as a college man makes him that much more attractive to Anne Bancroft.
Road Trip (2000)
The Lesson: A trip to the sperm bank is a quick and easy way to make a bit of extra beer money. Although when asking the staff for help, be aware that you might get more than you bargained for.
The Teacher: Stifler, sorry, “E.L.”, who ends up learning a few things about his body he never dreamed were possible.
Starter For 10 (2006)
The Lesson: Join the University Challenge team at the first possible opportunity… you’ll have your pick of the hottest girls on campus.
The Teacher: James McAvoy, who finds himself forced to choose between Alice Eve and Rebecca Hall. It’s a tough life.
The Lesson: If you’re going to cheat on your exams, be sure you have an exceedingly hot mate on hand to bail you out of trouble with whoever catches you out.
The Teacher: Devon Sawa (remember him?) ropes in Jaime King in order to mollify uber-geek Jason Schwartzman. Everyone’s a winner. Except possibly Jaime.
Animal House (1978)
The Lesson: A peek through a sorority house window will almost always result in a primo view of a giggly, flesh-filled pillow fight. University girls just can’t get enough of it.
The Teacher: Bluto gets an eyeful when he scales a conveniently positioned ladder and takes a peek inside. So much so that he can’t stop himself from falling back to Earth again.
Van Wilder: Party Liaison (2002)
The Lesson: If somebody leaves a box of unsolicited baked goods outside your room, leave them the hell alone. They’re likely to be filled with dog semen.
The Teacher: Poor old Daniel Cosgrove learns this lesson the hard way so you don’t have to. A stomach-churning scene if ever there was one.
The Accused (1949)
The Lesson: Don’t pursue an unrequited obsession with a professor, as you’ll probably end up dead.
The Teacher: Douglas Dick plays the unhinged student who is killed by Loretta Young’s lecturer. In fairness to her, he was trying to force himself on her. Best avoid the whole scenario altogether and stick to your fellow students.
Orange County (2002)
The Lesson: Don’t bring your alcoholic, emotionally unstable mother or dozy, pot-smoking brother along to your entrance interview. They won’t help your cause.
The Teacher: Colin Hanks, whose attempts to secure a place at Stanford are somewhat hamstrung by the presence of his dysfunctional family.
With Honors (1994)
The Lesson: Don’t leave your dissertation lying around. It might end up in the hands of an enterprising tramp with plans to take you for all you’re worth.
The Teacher: Brendan Fraser falls foul of this one. Why can’t he just take his papers back off the vagrant in question? He’s played by Joe Pesci, that’s why.
St. Elmos Fire (1985)
The Lesson: Enjoy university life to the full, because as soon as you graduate, it’s time to grow up.
The Teacher: Rob Lowe’s frat boy gets a fairly severe lesson in this, by crashing his girlfriend’s car immediately after graduating and getting slapped with a drink-driving charge. Bummer.
Wonder Boys (2000)
The Lesson: Becoming socially attached to a charismatic professor will make your University days ten times more exciting, and it won’t end in tears.
The Teacher: Michael Douglas’s troubled but charming professor takes both Tobey Maguire and Katie Holmes under his wing, and while their adventures are somewhat bizarre, both of them turn out alright in the end, with nary a disciplinary in sight!
The Social Network (2010)
The Lesson: Befriend the resident nerds in your halls. They might end up cutting you in on a multi-billion dollar dotcom enterprise! Or cutting you out of one.
The Teacher: Eduardo Saverin, whose friendship with Mark Zuckerberg makes him a potful of cash. Eventually.
The Lesson: College professors aren’t interested in male students taking part in their research studies. Female students are quite another story…
The Teacher: The poor sap who turns up to Venkman’s telepathy study, only to have his (correct) answers met with a nasty electric shock!
Sydney White (2007)
The Lesson: Being popular and fitting in at all costs is not the be all and end all. Wearing baggy tracksuits and reading comic books is also fine.
The Teacher: Amanda Bynes’ “tomboy” (yeah, right) who is turned away from a prissy sorority and finds happiness amongst the geeks and misfits.
Dead Man On Campus (1998)
The Lesson: It’s easier just to study for your exams than try to persuade a roommate to commit suicide in order to pass by default.
The Teacher: Meat-headed chumps Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Tom Everett Scott, who waste an entire semester trying to persuade people to kill themselves. Nice chaps.
The Skulls (2000)
The Lesson: If somebody asks you to join a secret society that wasn’t advertised at the Freshers’ Fair, give it a miss. It will likely end up in murder.
The Teacher: Josh Jackson, who joins the Skull & Bones club at Yale, and ends up in a mental institution within a couple of weeks.
Horse Feathers (1932)
The Lesson: If your President starts drafting ringers on to the football team, its time to hang up your boots. The thing will only descend into farce…
The Teacher: Groucho Marx, who attempts to boost his team’s chances with some professional help, only to wind up with a dog-catcher and a bootlegger in his lineup.
Mona Lisa Smile (2003)
The Lesson: One for the ladies here: marriage needn’t be your ultimate goal in life! That is all.
The Teacher: Julia Roberts’ progressive history of art lecturer, who teaches her students that there’s more to life than getting a ring on it.
Scream 2 (1997)
The Lesson: When choosing where to go to university, it’s sometimes best to leave your school friends behind and strike out on your own.
The Teacher: Sidney Prescott, whose decision to attend the same college as fellow Woodsboro survivor Randy is like a red rag to a bull for old Ghostface.
The Lesson: Don’t worry if your tutor has given you a failing grade. Simply report an accusation of sexual assault and watch his life fall apart around him.
The Teacher: Debra Eisenstadt, who drags William H. Macy’s career into the gutter in David Mamet’s adaptation of his own play.
Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen (2009)
The Lesson: If you’ve got a girlfriend back home, be careful of having your head turned by the first pretty young thing to cross your path.
The Teacher: Sam Witwicky is pretty quick to forget about his other half (who looks like Megan Fox, lest we forget) as soon as Isabel Lucas’ smoking hot co-ed shows up. Sure enough, she turns out to be an evil robot. Lesson learned.
The Rules Of Attraction (2002)
The Lesson: Everybody at university is shagging everybody else. Best practise safe sex…
The Teacher: Sean Bateman, younger brother of Patrick. Probably not the best role model, in that case…
Good Will Hunting (1997)
The Lesson: Don’t look down on the facility’s janitor. He’s probably much smarter than you are.
The Teacher: Will Hunting himself, who sets about solving semi-impossible equations and problems while scrubbing the floors of MIT’s mathematics department.
Urban Legend (1998)
The Lesson: Don’t divert from the usual college routine of boozing and shagging to spend the evening creeping each other out with horror stories. It will only end in tears.
The Teacher: The poor saps in Urban Legend , whose attempts to creep each other out end up in widespread bloodshed. Should have gone out on that bar crawl after all.
The Lesson: All manner of personal and social shortcomings can be compensated for by the ability to throw a good party.
The Teacher: The perma-offensive sap whom Jeremy Piven rescues from social pariah status by organising a game-changing party, involving an appearance from scene-stealing funk lunatic, George Clinton.
One On One (1997)
The Lesson: We’ll quote direct from the poster for this one. “There comes a time when love stops being a ball and starts being a woman.” Amen, brother.
The Teacher: Robby Benson’s college basketball hero, who falls in love with his beautiful tutor. Time to stop kissing that ball, Robby.
Higher Learning (1995)
The Lesson: Campus is basically a modern-day warzone, where racial abuse, rape and gunfights are all everyday occurrences. Best stay at home.
The Teacher: Omar Epps, Kristy Swanson and Michael Rapaport, all of whom have a fairly miserable time during what should be the best days of their lives.
Real Genius (1985)
The Lesson: If a disembodied voice tells you to stop playing with yourself, it’s probably one of your mates, rather than God. Strum away!
The Teacher: Val Kilmer and his merry band of geeky pals. They bloody love a laugh, this lot!
Monster On The Campus (1958)
The Lesson: If your science professor looks as though he’s experimenting on some pretty weird shit, it might be best to switch subjects. Chances are he’s about to go feral…
The Teacher: The luckless pupils of a professor who is bitten by a prehistoric fish and turns into a flesh-hungry beast. It can happen…
The Lesson: Give the college blackjack club a miss. You’ll only wind up embroiled in an elaborate plot to shake down every casino in Las Vegas.
The Teacher: Jim Sturgess initially thinks he’s found the perfect way to pay himself through college. Needless to say, he ends up in way over his head.
Educating Rita (1983)
The Lesson: A passion for learning can trump even the most nihilistic obsession with booze.
The Teacher: Julie Walters’ Rita, who rouses Michael Caine’s disillusioned old soak into coaching her through an adult education course.
The Sure Thing (1985)
The Lesson: The love of your life could be right under your nose…
The Teacher: John Cusack and Daphne Zuniga, who travel up and down the country together in search of their ideal matches, before returning to college and realising they’re mad about each other. Aww.
The Lesson: Try out for the college football team, even if you’re a bit crap and half as fit as the other players. You’ll make it eventually.
The Teacher: Plucky little Daniel Eugene "Rudy" Ruettiger, who ends up playing for Notre Dame despite all the obstacles thrown in his way. Woooo!
I Flunked, But (1930)
The Lesson: If you’re going to write a list of illicit answers on the arm of your shirt, don’t leave said shirt out to be washed by the maid the night before the exam.
The Teacher: Tatsuo Saito’s student slacker, whose plans to coast through college without studying are undone by his overzealous cleaner.
Revenge Of The Nerds (1984)
The Lesson: Don’t assume that just because somebody wears glasses, they’re going to take a torrent of frat boy abuse lying down. It’s not always the case…
The Teacher: The popular kids of Adams College, who soon find the tables turned by a hardcore of militant nerds!
The Lesson: If you’re an underweight loser with a small social group and no aptitude for sports, learn how to hit a drum, join the college marching band and let the girls come to you.
The Teacher: Nick Cannon, whose drumming skills win him the head cheerleader’s heart. Badoom-tish!
The Inbetweeners Movie (2011)
The Lesson: Avoid potential embarrassment during Fresher’s Week by getting it all out of your system during a debauched summer holiday to Magaluf.
The Teacher: Will, Jay, Simon and Neil, who make tits of themselves in grand style, much as they did throughout their school days. That will be it though now, right? Surely?
Summer Palace (2006)
The Lesson: Widespread political unrest will greatly enhance your chances of getting your leg over.
The Teacher: Most of the cast, as the Tiananmen Square uprising has an energising effect on the amount of illicit sex being enjoyed by Chinese students.
One Day (2011)
The Lesson: One-night stands can be the start of something beautiful. Open your eyes to their potential.
The Teacher: Dex and Em, who proceed to dance around their feelings for years after their graduation night fling. Get on with it! Time’s a-wasting…
The Lesson: Missed out on the required grades to get into uni? Just create a fake institution, siphon off your parents’ cash as “tuition fees” and have a high old time of it!
The Teacher: Justin Long, who somehow succeeds in setting up his own university that becomes officially recognised as a seat of learning. Easy when you know how.
The Butterfly Effect (2004)
The Lesson: Don’t take any of your adolescent diaries to college with you. Reading them will only send you hurtling back through time where you’ll make a right old hash of the future.
The Teacher: Ashton Kutcher’s perma-bemused protagonist, Evan Treborn. He can’t help but mess things up!
The Waterboy (1998)
The Lesson: Going to class is for mugs. Tackle your mean-spirited professor to the floor, and you’re golden.
The Teacher: Adam Sandler, seen here playing a gibbering man-child. Just for a change.
Sorority Boys (2002)
The Lesson: If you’re accused of stealing money from your fraternity, don’t dress up as sorority girls in order to clear your name. It’s a stupid, stupid plan.
The Teacher: Barry Watson, Michael Rosenbaum and Harland Williams, all of whom should look back on this episode and cringe…
The Lesson: If you ever turned down a nerdy outsider at primary school, watch your back… he’s bound to re-enter your life supremely pissed off.
The Teacher: Katherine Heigl’s medical student, who gets her throat cut by the aforementioned nut-job in the film’s opening reel.
Love Story (1970)
The Lesson: Don’t just home in on the people from a similar background to you. You might end up finding true love by mixing with people you have nothing in common with.
The Teacher: Ali MacGraw and Ryan O’Neal end up all gooey-eyed over each other, despite coming from very different backgrounds.
Legally Blonde (2001)
The Lesson: You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Even the shallowest airhead might be hiding a secret aptitude for intellectual prowess.
The Teacher: Reese Witherspoon’s sweet-natured valley girl turned legal whizz, Elle Woods. She’s much, much, much smarter than she looks.
Old School (2003)
The Lesson: You’re never too old to return to your old stamping ground.
The Teacher: Vince Vaughn, Luke Wilson and Will Ferrell all return to campus as conquering heroes. Chances are you’ll be received in the same way! Or alternatively you’ll be given pitying looks by a posse of boozed-up, sickeningly attractive students. One or the other.