May 17, 2010

Leung, Cheryl (TA) Silver_nugget
[ASCM V2008] Contemporary Islamic Civilization

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

Cheryl is by far the most dedicated and energetic TA I've encountered at Columbia. It's true that her section has a much heavier workload than any of the others, but if you’re looking to really get something out of the class then I think it’s worth it. She is also a stickler for attendance and being on time, but she only has 50 minutes a week and manages to thoroughly go over all the readings and make time for discussion and student presentations in that short amount of time. The reading list for this class is very long, but Cheryl kept us on track so that we wouldn’t fall behind when it came time for the midterm and final. She also organizes 2 hour review sessions for the midterm and final on her own time, which I found extremely helpful in preparing for the exams. (She also brings home-made cakes and cookies to class, which is a nice reward for the extra work!)

If you’re not afraid of a heavy workload, can get to class on time, and really want to take something away from the class, then try to get into Cheryl’s section!


In addition to Saliba’s reading list, we had assignments due each week on that week’s reading. A typical assignment might be a 4 or 5 page essay answering specific questions about the reading plus several YouTube videos relating to the author or issue we were reading about. Each person had to do two individual presentations throughout the semester on a specific author/article, and we presented in groups on one of the three novels assigned. We also had to write a 6-7 page thesis paper on another book on the syllabus that was not part of the “official” course requirements.