Madam Hooch role is described as Hogwarts' flying instructor.
Even though she does teach magic, she is not addressed as a professor.
I would imagine that, just like in the real world, to be called professor you would have to study yourself and have a degree, however, when Hagrid became the 'Care of Magical Creatures' teacher, he immediately received his title as a professor.
Even if technically students learn flying only for their first year, they still learn magic there, while on other classes, like 'Care of Magical Creatures' and 'History of Magic', they do not learn actual magic at all.

So why isn't Madam Hooch called professor while Hagrid is?

  • 3
    Highly related question.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 21, 2019 at 15:12
  • 6
    Broom flying is basically 'driver's ed' for wizards. The instructor for DE is often a professional driving instructor rather than a teacher and delivering a few classes every week or so doesn't make him or her one
    – Valorum
    Jun 21, 2019 at 15:12
  • 2
    Madam Pomfrey is addressed the same and does not teach any classes. I assume that as flying isn't technically a class -- nor is medical care -- that these women are strictly employees of the school. After all, you can't run an entire school facility with only professors. She is likely only needed for short periods of time and is probably more of a part-time employee.
    – Steve-o169
    Jun 21, 2019 at 15:42
  • 4
    Makes me wonder whether addressing teachers as "Professor" is in fact normal practice at (posh) Muggle schools in Britain. I have to assume that it is, but it seems odd, since at a British university (and unlike American universities) only the more senior academics are Professors. Jun 21, 2019 at 22:26
  • 11
    I'll point out that Hagrid does do original research - just look at the Blast-Ended Skrewts.
    – nick012000
    Jun 22, 2019 at 4:14

3 Answers 3


In short, her position is closer to a 'Cycling Proficiency' or 'Driver's Ed' tutor than a professor. She's giving the kids a class funded by the school but she doesn't appear to have any duties above and beyond this (and the occasional refereeing task), nor is her tutelage marked and nor is it tested at O.W.L. level.

When the school brings in external trainers, it seems to call them 'instructors', not professors.

‘Good morning,’ said the Ministry wizard, when all the students had arrived and the Heads of House had called for quiet. ‘My name is Wilkie Twycross and I shall be your Ministry Apparition Instructor for the next twelve weeks. I hope to be able to prepare you for your Apparition test in this time –’

By comparison, when they make Hagrid a teacher of a tested subject (and when they bring in Madam Grubbly-Plank in as a substitute teacher), they're immediately considered to be Professors.


From this linked answer, we can deduce that:

  • Madam Hooch is not a permanent staff member (possibly retired)
  • She does not teach anything except broom practice (also Quiddich), which is not an academic subject, but rather practical (like driving school, or sports club).

Out-of-universe, it is a "Dr vs Mr/Ms" issue, where "Doctor" title is used only to address teachers having a formal Doctors degree, while other teachers are addressed as common people. Probably "professor" is the Wizarding World analogy to Doctor.

  • 5
    The title of Professor is given to someone who is an acknowledged expert in their field, and teaches students, regardless of their own academic achievements. So a professor is not required to have obtained a doctorate in their field in order to teach. Throughout history in European colleges, many professors were also only "magisters", in that they had completed what we now call a masters degree and were teaching while working on their doctorate.
    – Seneca
    Jun 21, 2019 at 16:22
  • No doctorate but I teach as an adjunct... most of my students call me "Professor" even though I tell them that was my dad and to just call me ivan
    – ivanivan
    Jun 21, 2019 at 18:57
  • 3
    Real-world use of “professor”, both informally and as a formal title, varies hugely between different places/times/contexts. E.g. in modern American academia, it’s informally used for all university teachers and formally applied to many (certainly all tenured staff), while in British and most European academia, it’s the formal title for the most senior academics (roughly equivalent to “Chair” in US academia), and is usually only used in this sense. In the traditional British schools on which Hogwarts is modelled, I’m not sure how it was used, though “master” was the main title for teachers.
    – PLL
    Jun 22, 2019 at 21:00
  • @Seneca: There is a difference between the academic "professor" and the educational "professor". While they often overlap (i.e. teachers have academic certification), that's not an automatic given.
    – Flater
    Jun 24, 2019 at 10:08

She doesn’t technically teach anything tested during O.W.L.s.

This is the only reason I can come up with.


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