Each Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, ranked

It is a recurring theme in the Harry potter series that all Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers at Hogwarts have to be terrible in one way or another. The post is marred by Lord Voldemort after he fails to claim it for himself, preventing teachers from filling the post for over a year.

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Most of Harry Potter’s teachers tried to attack him, and those who didn’t get the chance didn’t get in touch with him. Yet in terms of competence, some teachers have been better than others.

9 Dolores Umbridge is more hated and unsympathetic than Lord Voldemort

Dolores Umbridge

By far the most hated character in Harry potter, Dolores Umbridge is even more unsympathetic than Lord Voldemort. In order to silence the young wizard, she orders a dementor attack on Harry. When that fails, she comes to Hogwarts – not to educate but to continue the Ministry of Magic’s program of controlling the school (and Harry in particular). He’s a horrible person who tortures students with a black feather and almost gives Harry veritaserum.

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As High Inquisitor of the school, she instituted drastic measures. For example, it bans all gatherings, including Quidditch games. Her highly ineffective teaching focuses on the absurd idea that students don’t need to use defensive spells – a concept that contrasts with the very nature of the subject she teaches.

8 Amycus Carrow is a Death Eater who teaches the forces of evil

the Crows

After the death of Albus Dumbledore and Voldemort’s takeover of Hogwarts, the post of Defense Against the Dark Arts professor fell to Amycus Carrow. Death Eater in the service of the Dark Lord, Amycus uses his position to teach students about the use of the Unforgivables. He even lets them practice the Cruciatus curse on students who earn deductions.

It also encourages the practice of Killing Curse and Fiendfyre. During his tenure, the class practically becomes “Dark Arts” and loses the notion of “Defense”. In that sense, although Carrow is a powerful wizard, he doesn’t actually teach what he’s meant to teach.

seven Quirinus Quirrell is possessed by Lord Voldemort


Harry’s very first DCFM teacher, Quirinus Quirrell, was originally a Muggle Studies teacher at Hogwarts. After an altercation with Voldemort in the forests of Albania, he is possessed by the specter of the Dark Lord. He returns to Hogwarts, now tasked with stealing the Philosopher’s Stone.

Quirrell seems relatively good at magic, as evidenced by his ability to cast a curse on Harry’s broom. He also introduces a number of spells to his class, including the Vermidillious Charm and the Wand Lighting Charm. However, as a teacher, he stutters a lot, which makes his lessons ineffective (if not totally incomprehensible). Between that and his connection to Voldemort, his competence in the post is questionable at best.

6 Gilderoy Lockhart is only competent to use Obliviate

Gilderoy Lockhart

Harry’s second-year teacher Gilderoy Lockhart stands out for his lack of competence. Required readings for students are works of fiction written by Lockhart himself. During the year, Gilderoy turns out to be totally useless on more than one occasion. He even gets embarrassed when he casts the spell “Peskipiksi Pesteromi” – an incantation meant to counter goblins that don’t actually exist.

His fraudulent incompetence takes a dangerous turn when Gilderoy reveals how his achievements are all stolen from others through the liberal use of the Obliviate spell. Gilderoy attempts to use the spell on Harry and Ron, but he turns on him because of Ron’s broken wand. As a result, Gilderoy ends up with significant spell damage.

5 Patricia Rakepick secretly works for the organization R

Highly skilled spellbreaker for the Gringotts Wizarding Bank, Patricia Rakepick appears as the in-game DADA teacher Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. Its carefully balanced curriculum includes both dark creatures and spells, combining theory and practice in a way that is of great benefit to students.

However, Rakepick works for Organization R, which aims to find and open the cursed chests of Hogwarts. When her intentions are revealed, she ends up killing a student. It’s a shame because she is one of the most competent DCFM teachers in the Harry potter universe.

4 Mad-Eye Moody is a Death Eater in disguise

Alastor Moody is invited to become Harry’s teacher in his fourth year at Hogwarts. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Moody turns out to be the Death Eater, Barty Crouch, Jr., who uses Polyjuice Potion to transform into the grizzled old Auror. Barty is the one who enchants the Goblet of Fire and makes Harry a contender for the Triwizard Tournament.

Ironically, despite being a Dark Lord follower in disguise, Barty is not a bad teacher. His lessons on the Unforgivables are controversial and even traumatic for some students, but his harsh teaching style introduces skills that students benefit from.

3 Remus Lupin’s lycanthropy doesn’t stop him from being a good teacher

david thewlis-harry potter

One of James Potter’s closest friends, Remus Lupine is unlucky enough to be violently attacked by Fenrir Greyback as a child. However, even though he’s a werewolf, he’s a brilliant Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. He defends Harry and his friends from the Dementors as they make their way to Hogwarts, and he teaches Harry the Patronus Charm – a spell that will later save his life.

Kind, intelligent and encouraging, Remus manages to arouse the thirst for knowledge in his students with interesting lessons. They are taught – mostly by doing – in a way that interests them. However, if he has one flaw, it’s his failure to take his Wolfsbane potion. Although considering the jinx, this is an expected oversight. It’s just a shame that after The prisoner of Azkaban, he no longer has the chance to shine.

2 Severus Snape excels in both potions and DCFM

snape header

The leader of House Slytherin, Severus Snape is known to all as a Hogwarts Potions teacher, though his expertise in the field goes beyond mere teaching. However, despite his love for the subtle art of potion-making, he always showed an interest in the position of Defense Against the Dark Arts professor. He finally makes his wish come true in Harry’s sixth year.

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Highly qualified in the field, he strives to make sense of the disjointed education that the students have received. His lessons are mainly practical. It delves into darker fields and depictions, which paint a brutal yet authentic picture of the enemy students face. Severus might not be the warmest teacher, but his unique perspective and skills make him one of the most qualified.

1 Albus Dumbledore takes the job before the Jinx became a problem

Dumbledore leans against a desk

Albus Dumbledore is best known as the eccentric but incredibly powerful Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Witchcraft. However, this did not happen overnight. He’s mentor of Transfiguring Minerva McGonagall, but his first teaching post at Hogwarts is Defense Against the Dark Arts. In the Fantastic beasts movies, his students face off with scarecrows in the same way Remus asks Harry’s third grade class to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Therefore, Dumbledore is hailed as one of the best teachers in Hogwarts history.

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