Review Comment

[RELI V3651] Evangelicalism

January 04, 2012

Balmer, Randall Silver_nugget
[RELI V3602] Religion in America I and [RELI V3651] Evangelicalism

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

Randy is a wonderful, charming professor and I thoroughly enjoyed both classes I took with him this semester. His lectures consist of easy to follow (although not posted) powerpoints, with added commentary and explanations. Sometimes the lectures can get a little too theoretical or outright boring, but Professor Balmer is often outwardly apologetic about this and really tries to make the lectures interesting. He is a seriously respected scholar in the field of American religion, so you'll be able to get some really detailed information about some of the topics with which he's worked the most. He's always willing to see students during office hours.

You WILL NOT PASS this class if you do not do the reading. He pulls many multiple-choice and short answer questions on exams directly from the reading. The reading is usually directly related to what is discussed in lecture. Some books are painfully boring but on the whole they're not that bad. Missing lecture isn't the worst thing, but make sure you get detailed notes from someone else.

In the past, Professor Balmer gave out study guides prior to midterm and final exams, but as of Fall 2011 he has ended that practice. He made the midterms way too tricky for both classes. As a response to students' grief over their bad midterm grades, he offered the class the option to double their final exam grade if they completed a 2-page review of one of the class texts. This proved to be an AMAZING option, since the final was significantly easier than the midterm and if you studied, there was no reason not to do well.

Workload:

Somewhere between 50 and 200 pages a week. More often a few chapters of a book than an entire book at once.

Religion in America: Two 4-6 page response papers (topics posted 1-2 weeks in advance), 40 points each. Midterm exam 45 points. Final exam, 45 points. Discussion (Pop up discussion class every few weeks. Attendance is what counts.), 30 points.

Evangelicalism: Research paper - proposal, 10 points; paper 70 points. Midterm exam, 60 points. Final Exam, 60 points. Discussion (Pop up discussion class every few weeks. Attendance is what counts.), 30 points.

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