January 03, 2005

Mercer, Christia Silver_nugget
[PHIL V2201] History of Philosophy II: Aquinas to Kant

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

Mercer is as bright as any professor in the outstanding philosophy dept, and perhaps the very best I've had in terms of teaching ability. Her lectures are crystal clear and impeccably organized, always beginning with a review of the last lecture and the overall context in which you should be prepared to take in the next one. Important points are thoroughly explained and (necessarily) repeated to iron out their complexities. Her grading is fair - the TA's grade based on the guidelines she puts forth when she discusses a paper/exam. She genuinely cares about teaching undergraduates in a way that many of the dept's fine professors seem to neglect as a result of their celebrity-like status in the philosophy world. She shares this status and it is reflected in the confidence with which she delivers the material. Some may misinterpret this confidence, but it is definitely warranted in my opinion.

Workload:

Fair but substantial - don't miss lectures even if you fall behind in the reading, because they clarify things that you're bound to miss. two (about 6-page?) papers, two fair exams.