Review Comment

mechanics and e&m

November 19, 2002

Gersten, Joel
mechanics and e&m

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Professor Gersten has singlehandedly killed physics for me. I like science. I love chemistry. But physics will forever be my nemesis due to Prof. Gersten.
Have you ever heard of a professor who has 15 minutes of office hours, twice a week? Yes, that's right. 15 minutes. Why? Because he doesn't care about his students. I took this class because I needed an off sequence class. His class runs at night, with mechanics in the spring and e&m in the fall. The class is an evil evil group of individuals who spend all of their time in the library studying physics. (This is all my opinion--not fact). This leaves regular undergraduate students (such as me), at a severe disadvantage. But the main problem is the awful teaching. Gersten drones in a boring monotone, teaching straight out of the book, with no additional insights. He does take questions, and, of course, the annoying post-bacs have many many to ask.
How you do in the class is, of course, dependent on the curve, which is a problem. The textbook is also poorly written, which is a problem if you need to teach the material to yourself (you will). Overall, the classes sucks. Take it at Barnard. Or take it at Columbia and take Tuts. But whatever you do, do not take this class.


Homework due one week after the chapter is taught. The point in doing the homework is to assist you when you teach yourself the material. Even though the homework is collected and graded, it does not count in computing your grade in the course. The real work is getting up the motivation to teach yourself the material.

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