General Physics I

Apr 2021

I strongly second that person who said Shaevitz does not deserve his silver nugget. Don't get me wrong, he seems like a decent enough person but he cannot teach to save his life. It's to the point where when I stopped going to class and reading his crappy handwritten notes and terrible textbook I actually started doing better in the class. I didn't take any AP Physics courses in high school so this is all fresh and new to me and let me tell you this class is NOT beginner-friendly at all. Khan Academy will be your friend and get ready to do everything and I do mean everything on your own. Shaevitz cannot teach. His lectures are confusing streams of consciousness that makes it feel like you're listening to some old guy try to see if he remembers physics for himself versus any sort of actual instruction.

Mar 2021

He truly is a friendly and lovely man...but he is quite boring. The content is not too hard, but his explanations make it super difficult to understand. Going to office hours was a must for me. That said, once you are able to learn the material, the quizzes were fair. Midterm was really easy. The final was absolutely brutal.

Dec 2020

WHY does shaevitz have a silver nugget? He seems like a nice guy but is actually so old that he loses his train of thought while attempting to explain problems. Good luck trying to decipher is variable-ridden notes that never actually define concepts in understandable terms. Lots of assumed knowledge in this class. If you took AP physics in high school you're very lucky but everyone else, sorry. Get ready to teach yourself physics with the world's worst textbook and the most niche problems that physics majors will be unable to help you. Shaevitz in the age of zoom is even worse than what I assume he would be like otherwise. This part I feel bad about because he tries his best but his online teaching is highly highly ineffectual. Midterm and Final are all multiple choice and worth 10-15 points each with follow up questions based on the previous - so if you mess up, there's no partial credit. Very easy to not do well due to silly mistakes.

Dec 2020

I took General Physics I with Professor Shaevitz. His lectures were clear cut and doing the assigned problem sets really helped me practice and master the material. Although the homework is optional and ungraded, it is basically essential to passing this class. Professor Shaevitz was really helpful during office hours--he has one two hour section and one one hour section in the evenings two days a week. He would answer questions on the homework or lecture patiently and clearly. He did lots and lots of practice problems during class, which I found really helpful for when I went and did the homework. Occasionally it could seem like he was flying through material in lecture classes (this was mostly due to time limitations), but I found that only when I watched the lectures live--all of the lectures are recorded, so if something was not clear or if I missed it, I could could always go back and re-watch it and pause as needed to write everything down. The lecture notes are also available on Canvas. I found that the quality of this class was not diminished despite being in an online format due to COVID-19. The only thing that was a bit of a downer was that our quizzes and exams were multiple choice, and so there was no partial credit for wrong answers. (Prior to COVID-19 and the interruption of in-person learning, partial credit was given because written equations and work was shown on paper exams and quizzes.) Ultimately, this class basically entails understanding why and when to use certain formulas to solve straightforward questions. Once you master how do that for each topic, you'll be golden. Just for disclosure, I expect to get an A+ in this class.

Jan 2020

I'd second that he's a good guy, but I'd only advise taking this class if you have *at least some* background in physics. If his lectures are your first exposure to the subject it's quite the uphill battle (not impossible, the curve is generous). It's just not the class to be in as someone new to physics.

Jan 2020

The curve saved my ass. He's not a good lecturer, but he's a good guy. I hate his exams oh man. There's 2 "midterms" and one final. They are the only items that contribute to your grade in the class. However, if you complete all of the homework assignments (from which he will pick a couple questions to grade), it will help you if you are in between letter grades. For example, if you are in between a -B and B, and you did all of the homework questions, he will give you the B. You most definitely have to do practice outside of lecture or else you will do poorly in his class. I got by on YouTube prep videos and cramming the last 3 days before an exam. And I ended up with a B+ so it's possible just a lot of work on your part.

Apr 2019

I remember reading the reviews about Humensky before I signed up for his Physics 1 class. After taking 2 semesters with him I feel obligated to change the tone of his reviews. Preface: I am a Postbac Premed and I finished my undergrad 8 years ago. I was very apprehensive going into this class, as physics was never fun or easy for me in high-school, and remembered NOTHING. YES Humensky has a SIGNIFICANT work load. You will work, but you will LEARN physics. I went from zero understanding to a reasonably thorough conceptual understanding of the material. Humensky gives quizzes on Sundays and Tuesdays, but they're usually just 3-4 preparatory problems that make sure you read some of the material before you go into class for lecture...its online...its a quiz grade. It's SUCH a good system. Unless you're one of those people that reads every chapter before going into class on your own accord...cheers. I'm happy for you. Perhaps a bit jelly too. His hw ensures consistent lecture prep, and the problem set every Friday is a recap of the material he lectured that week. It's on wileyplus, you have 4 tries to get full credit,8 tries total. Beneath each problem is: a link to the specific chapter in the text, videos of similar problems being done, math help, a hint to help you if your stuck, and sometimes a step-by-step tutorial which walks you through the problem. Yes it has it's annoyances(interactive exercises), but it is designed to help you learn the material, through multiple problems with all of those resources at the ready. This is a class that is structured around this problem based learning; it works if you work. He has 1 hour and 20 min to teach you some complex ideas, so you have to do your part. I've had professors that offer ZERO office hours, Humensky started with 2 days of 2 hr blocks. He was later informed that this wasn't always enough and he added a third day to make himself more available. RIGHT??? He is one of the FEW teachers that truly wants you to understand the class material. He shows examples in class frequently. Yes, the derivations sometimes get me a little cross-eyed, but everybody learns differently, and some classmates definitely benefited from them. They didnt help me much but he presented so much other material that did. He always answers questions in a kind and thoughtful way and doesn't patronize, EVER. He promotes a very healthy dialogue with the class. He admits if he doesn't know something, and will always follow up after he's answered it. He is extremely responsive to student questions on piazza as well. Humensky will drop your lowest exam grade if it helps your average. He WANTS you to do well. He made one midterm really difficult last semester and the class averaged way lower than he expected. He acknowledged making it too hard, he regraded every test himself and gave the max amount of points possible. Most professors would just shrug and move on. He puts more time into his class than I've ever seen from any Prof before. -Also just have to add that he has the warmest disposition, is so approachable, and always rocks the classic dad style. #polosjeansandnewbalance. Hw "only hurting you" is BS if you actually do it and do it well. It also serves as a really great study tool to go over older material before an exam. I wanted to be able to retain this information for the MCAT. I wasn't just trying to get an A with as little amount of work as possible. If that's you, sign up someone with no hw assignments. If you learn by doing, you're willing to work, and you haven't taken physics in years/ever. Humey is your man.

Jul 2015

There are alot of negative reviews on here for budick, many of which made me iniatially apprehensive about signing up for his course. This was also the first college couse I have taken as I just finished the class over the summer of my senior year in high school but quickly my concern was cast away and i became captivated with Budick's lectures. If you want to really learn physics budick is the way to go. He was easily one of the best and quirkiest teachers i have had and his stories and lectures made the class especially interesting and even hilarious at times. Budick is however very tough to understand sometimes and I highly reccommend that if you are to take this class that you read the lecture slides he posts on courseworks before class. It is also necessary at times to read ahead; the class moves incredibly fast and if you dont go ahead youll be stuck behind. Before each exam Budick posts a series of practice tests online with his answers in the back. Often his work is difficult to follow but if you spend the time struggling through on your own first it will really pay off when you have to take the actual test. If you are taking this course to prepare for the mcat he does cover topics that may be on the test. I also highly reccommend that you consider taking the lab along with the lecture. Columbia has some amazing resources and it is well worth it to take advantage of them (it will also help you in the class).

May 2015

I was instructed by Professor Humensky for the Physics I and II cycle this past academic year. Unfortunately I cannot recommend him as a professor at this or any institution. An amiable enough guy, its clear that after 4 or 5 semesters of teaching that it doesn't suit him. Via reports from my peers who were with him during his first semester, back in the spring of 2013, he has made little to no improvement in his lecture style or the format of his course. Please note that I did well both semesters, receiving grades in the "A" range, so this is not the review of a slighted, disgruntled student. Professor Humensky is unable to do what I feel is the most important job of a professor in the sciences: distill complex information from the text into meaningful, understandable ideas that the eager student can use to navigate problem solving. While lecturing, he stays exclusively to his prepared notes which he reads almost as if they were a script. Later, these notes are posted to courseworks; the language and structure of the notes, and thus his lectures, are almost carbon copies of the textbook. What's wrong with this? We already have the textbook, which of course we have paid an inordinate amount of money for. To sit in lecture where it is read back to us, equations derived in turn with little additional explanation, is a disregard for the value of the instruction that should be expected. I had a hard time understanding the ideas in the text, as many students do. In an ideal world, lecture is able to help decipher what seems on first read to be a foreign language, but instead I was left to spend excessive time finding quality instruction via youtube videos. The interesting thing is that quality instruction IS out there, as evidenced by what I was able to learn with youtube supplementation of the text. Student questions in lecture were often met with the Humensky 1000 Yard Stare, as he was forced to grapple with the information himself instead of merely restating it to the class. 20% of a student's final grade is determined by weekly problem sets, which everyone has the answers to; in this way, your homework grade can only hurt. The other 10% is decided by mandatory prelecture quizzes on the expensive WileyPlus online learning tool, which also seems to only be able to hurt your grade. Humensky defends this meaningless 30% of your class grade by actually arguing for the utility of assignments that give incentive via their ability to hurt you. A student is only able to distinguish him or herself through the midterms and final. Here, Professor Humensky is mostly fair: you are allowed to drop 1 of your three midterm grades, and with one exception the exams were composed of 1.5 to 2 dot-level problems (difficulty scale per the textbooks) which were extensions of the ideas reinforced in the problem sets. The exception to this was the Physics II final exam, where he chose to put several 3-dot problems on the test which were not reflective of applications of the course material emphasized at any point in the semester. Two of the problems were taken verbatim from the textbook, I learned upon later review. If this isn't intellectual laziness, I don't know what is. Professor Humensky is institutional failure personified. Again, I cannot recommend him as a professor at this or any university. It stands to reason that I cannot recommend his class. Consider all other options first and then be ready to find outside sources to supplement your understanding.

Jan 2014

Professor Humensky was a good instructor. His lectures were ambiguous at times (especially when solving some of the examples that were intended to supplement/clarify concepts). However, he reviewed the theory and math behind all of the important concepts, and didn't base his tests on the material that wasn't covered in a thorough fashion. I believe the biggest strength of the course was the amount of practice material made available for review. Homeworks and pre-lecture problems reappeared on the exams, with slight variations. Furthermore, the Professor instructed his TAs to be very generous with partial credit for work, emphasizing method and conceptual understanding over mathematical calculations (plug 'n' chug). This class was certainly challenging, but not impossible by any means.

Dec 2013

Professor Humensky genuinely tried to be a good professor. He made us use WileyPlus (which is ridiculously expensive considering you can only use it for one semester) and he assigned problem sets and posted the answers on his coursework's in a timely manner. From his class design, he had the makings of a solid professor. The problem with his class is that he would only go over how to do problems during the class period rather than go over theory. Those promises he made to go over topics people had difficulty with in the pre-lecture problems were never fulfilled. He does seem to be a nice, down to earth guy, but he isn't an effective professor. There was no balance between teaching theory and going over problems. The redeeming quality of the class is that if you can do the problem sets he assigns, you can do the tests. I was in his first class of General Physics I and so we didn't have any practice tests or material to prepare for exams. The class has a generous curve since the average is somewhere between 50%-60% for each test. If you're premed, I would highly encourage you to take Shaevitz instead of Humensky. Humensky is not an easy A (you can get an A, but it won't be easy) and he does not make it easy to take his class with Mowshowitz bio as he unwittingly has tests scheduled for the day before Mowshowitz bio tests. He's not the worst option and it really depends on what you're trying to get out of the class. If you're just looking for an easy A, this isn't the class.

Jul 2013

I have to admit I was at first hesitant about taking Humensky's section of Intro Physics; he was a new professor but I decided to give his class a try. At the end of the semester, I have to say I was pleased with my decision. Not only do I feel extremely prepared for the MCATS but the tests were pretty fair. His teaching methods improved throughout the semester, thankfully. The workload isn't that bad and the quizzes made sure you were keeping up with the material. If you actively understood the material, and didn't just cram for the midterm/final, then you didn't really need to study at all for the exams. In comparing Shaevitz and Humensky, I would definitely recommend taking Humensky if given the choice. You actually LEARN the material in his class, compared to getting a "GPA booster" class and stumbling on the MCATS which actually matter. I never had taken physics before, so it was a struggle learning everything with Mowsh's class, but it was worth the pay off. The class average was around B+/A-.

Jun 2013

Shaevitz was a nice break from the Mowsh Bio, as you knew what to expect on the quizzes, midterm, and final. Make sure you put in the time for each quiz and the midterm+final will be just review, making it much easier. Going to class is not a necessity, since he really did not explain some of the concepts that well. I received an A+ by studying and getting near perfects for each quiz + doing all of the problems, and understanding the concepts behind them, acing the midterm and missing little on the final. Honestly, the great thing about this class is that you can predict what kind of questions Shaevitz likes to ask and understanding the theory behind them. I feel like I am confident in physics, but maybe still not confident as I am biology for the mcat even though I did not do nearly as well in biology. Take advantage of this class since biology will most likely drag your GPA down. All in all, this class was a great class and I would take it again in a heart beat.

Feb 2013

So I really don't understand how Prof. Shaevitz earned his silver nugget. He isn't an awful professor. (I've had worse.) But he isn't particularly good in lecture. Sure, I will admit that his section of premed physics is probably the easiest section at Columbia. (How often is it that 20+ people get 100's on a midterm?!) And maybe the lack of GPA-induced stress in Shaevitz's section explains for his "popularity." But that shouldn't make this man deserving of a silver nugget. I have the MCAT coming up this semester, and I don't feel particularly well-prepared in physics (based on what I learned in Shaevitz's section). Learning how to plug and chug numbers into equations is not equivalent to learning physics. If anything, Shaevitz's section does not feel like a legitimate physics class. Rather, it feels like a throwback to my old high school science classes. (Some people feel that their AP Physics classes in high school were harder than Shaevitz's class. Mine certainly was.) An earlier review describes the professor's lectures as stale, and I totally second that. Below is what happens during just about every lecture: Shaevitz comes into class. -> He flashes a wide smile. -> He writes a bunch of derivations on the board. People occasionally ask him to explain the derivations that he writes on the board (assuming the class is actually engaged). -> Oh, you don't need to know that for the test, we are told. -> He flashes another wide smile. -> Prof. Shaevitz does a demo. (Without fully explaining the relevance of the demo.) -> The demo doesn't quite work. -> Oh well, says the professor. -> He flashes a toothy grin. -> Then he proceeds to write more derivations on the board. He skips a bunch of steps in the derivation. -> A few minutes later (midway through the derivation), he tells the class (he clearly thinks we are math-phobic): "We know what to do when we have differential equations! We plug in the answer!" -> A wide smile is flashed. -> The professor skips even more steps in the derivation. He makes a bunch of logical leaps and finishes the derivation. -> The class is confused but no one bothers to raise their hand. (These derivations are obviously not going to be on Shaevitz's tests, so why bother paying attention?) -> Sooner of later, Shaevitz completes his derivation. -> Time for another toothy grin. -> Now it's time for another demo. -> The demo works this time and is actually kind of cool. (Though the relevance of the demo, once again, isn't explained.) -> Pleased that the demo worked, the professor flashes yet another grin. The toothiest and widest grin of all. While Shaevitz's class is relatively easy in comparison to other required premed classes, don't expect to develop a deep understanding of physics from this class alone. You are going to need to put in a lot of INDEPENDENT work, and if you are in Shaevitz's section, it is up to YOU to take the initiative to learn enough physics to be well-prepared for the MCAT. The professor seems to be a nice guy and is willing to help you. Prof. Shaevitz also has a wonderful sing-song voice and an even more wonderful smile. You may be charmed during your first few lectures. But it gets old kinda fast.

Jan 2013

While some of the reviews on here are perhaps a tiny bit extreme, it became clear to me by the time we had the first midterm that Prof. Budick has some serious teaching deficiencies. I basically taught the entire course to myself, with the help of a study group and the grad students in the study room (note that about half the grad students are useless at explaining things and/or don't speak English; the other half are great). The worst thing about Budick is his complete and all consuming inability to gauge student understanding - he had no idea, at any point in the semester, including immediately before and after exams, what students did or did not understand. When answering questions, he often trips over his own words - he clearly understands the problem in his head, but is often unable to explain how he got from step A to step B to step C. Worse, sometimes he makes minor errors when going between steps (which he often does in his head) and then this results in a serious error by the time he gets to the solution. Often he'll respond to a student's question by pointing to the board and saying, "well, that process occurred when we went from this step to this step", but it isn't clear to anybody how he went from A to B. Sometimes the answers on his exam solutions sheets, which he gives you to prepare for exams, are just wrong. I have always been very good at math, and actually liked both Calc I and Calc II, but sometimes his math is pretty obscure - he uses a lot of somewhat complicated trigonometric identities and weird formulas or ideas that are not intuitive to those of use who don't spend every second of our lives doing math. If you plan on doing well in this class, you had better be able to rearrange the shit out of any equation with any number of variables. This is the evening section, and it is mostly post-baccs and quite competitive. I got an A- and you better believe I worked my ass off for it. This is not easy to do if you are working full-time (which I was) and also taking chem. Just be prepared for a solid 15-20+ hours of work per week, unless you're some sort of freaky physics "natural". The final for this class was easily the worst exam that has ever happened to me (I use the word "happened" because I truly felt as though I had no control over the situation - it was not something I felt particularly actively involved in). There are 10 questions, worth 20 points each, and you get 3 hours. I think I only answered 120 points worth of questions, and figured there was no way I could have gotten more than 95-100/200. The questions were painfully difficult. They are not straightforward, and while in no way did I expect this course to be easy, his exam questions were so hard that sometimes even the grad students (who grade the exams) couldn't figure them out. You must combine multiple concepts in very advanced ways. This is NOT just plugging things into formulas. I am trying extremely hard to switch professors for next semester, although that is tricky if you work full time during the day, since there are no other evening sections. Professor Budick is, however, extremely good at telling stories. Just not at teaching physics. DO ALL OF THE HOMEWORKS. I am absolutely positive that my perfect homework completion rate was the only reason I got an A-.

Dec 2012

He really sucks at explaining concepts so this class was basically taught by the TA during recitation and I had to work extra hard to do well on tests. Its easier to get a good grade in this class because he gives weekly quizzes which make up 35% of the grade, and you can drop two of those quizzes. However this was really stressful because I had to learn the material outside of class cause Shaevitz sucks.

Feb 2012

There are a lot of older reviews that seem to be not too fond of old man Budick. I think he is fantastic. He really is an interesting lecturer who is one of the best I have ever had. A lot of people complain about him ("do more problems, less stories") but I think its his stories and his endearing personality that make him great. Some of his tests are challenging, but so are all the other teachers. My one complaint is that he gives you 4 "practice exams" which are real exams he has given in the past (and by "past" I mean the 1830's). These should be treated as "practice problems" more than "practice exams", because often they in no way resemble the test that he gives you. I transfered out of his section for the second semester, purely because I couldnt attend his class at that time anymore (715pm). If he taught a section during the day, I would have stayed in his class. My new teacher is great (parsons), but I miss Budick. I will probably never have someone as engaging as he is. He is very smart, funny, interesting, helpful if you go to see him, personable, and generally likeable. He is the only teacher I have ever had to seemed genuinely interested in our opinion of how the class was going. He had us submit critique cards after both tests, which he responded to in front of the whole class. That shows tremendous character and dedication, for someone who has been teaching something for 30 years in an ivy league environment to invite criticism from a group of twentysomethings, and then respond in a way that shows genuine concern. That alone made me respect him. On an odd note: most of the class is postbac's. In fact, there may not have been a single undergrad in my class this past fall. People argue about what that means, but take that for whatever it means to you.

Oct 2011

I thoroughly enjoyed this class. I found his lectures to be very organized and clear. I'm truly not good at math or physics, but Professor Shaevitz presents the material in a way so that anyone can understand it. I was even able to follow his derivations, which helped me to further understand physics as opposed to just memorizing formulas (this helps with homework problems that are not clear cut). People seem to be annoyed with the fact that he derives formulas but honestly it helps you understand the material better and if you honestly just want to memorize formulas and be done with it you can still do so without any consequences (he doesn't quiz you on derivations). He just presents it for those who are interested. Those who say his lectures are stale I don't agree with at all. Its physics, so to some degree people who are not interested in physics will find parts of it boring, but Shaevitz tries to make it somewhat entertaining by doing demonstrations in class every lecture. At one point he stood on top of a desk to prove a point about some physics concept. Shaevitz is also extremely friendly, patient, and approachable. He has no problem answering questions or stopping to explain something again if students do not understand. I highly recommend this class if you have to take physics. If you go to class and the recitation and do the weekly problem sets (optional, but I recommend doing them since material on the quizzes comes from hw) you can easily make an A in this class and don't have to read the text book. So for premed students, you can make an A easily in this class if you do what your supposed to and still be very prepared for MCATS.

May 2011

I just finished Shaevitz's E&M final and I am writing this brief review to fulfill an overwhelming need for catharsis. I will follow-up with a much more detailed review in the future: I will describe the advantages and disadvantages of enrolling in Shaevitz's section (vs. the other premed sections) and suggest who would be best suited for his teaching style and approach to evaluation. Let me preface this review with two comments: (1) this review is not motivated by proverbial "source grapes." I performed well last semester and expect to do equally well this semester. (2) Shaevitz has the best of intentions. There is simply a real problem with his teaching style and philosophy. He has also taught this course for too long. His presentation is extraordinarily stale and he seems inflexible to adapting the course to the changing profile of his students. It is a struggle to convey how extraordinarily mediocre both the class and the professor are. This is a class in learning how to regurgitate, on an endless set of quizzes and exams, a limited set of problems which Shaevitz views as canonical. It is possible to do extremely well in this class and gain little understanding of physics. You are effectively learning how to solve Shaevitz problems and, while one could approach solving Shaevitz problems as an avenue to learning physics, this not encouraged or required. Consequently, what distinguishes an A and B student is not their understanding of the material. Rather, one's grade is largely a reflection of how careful one is with algebraic manipulation, pluggging numbers into a caculator, and avoiding careless mistakes. The class has means in the 90s. This is extraordinarily atypical according to all of my friends in the pure and engineering sciences. The class in best suited for post-baccs (who, frankly, do not have the same aptitude as undergrads, don't care to acquire a genuine understanding of the material, and have endless time to do problems) and undergrad students who suspect that they will struggle with the physics. It is a class where you can do extraordinarily well by just putting hours into solving Shaevitz's assigned HW problems. If you are actually interested in physics, have any aptitude at all, I suggest that you choose another section. You will only be penalized in this class for attempting to really engage with the material at a conceptual level.

Dec 2010

He does NOT drop any grades! 2 exams, both of which count and they are pretty much the only things that go into your final grade (the prob sets can sometimes make a difference between C- or C+, but that's only if you've done almost all of them correctly). His lectures seemed straight forward. I could not figure out why I could not do well on the exams and the problem sets until the final came around. Too late for me. I would suggest supplementing his notes with thorough readings of the textbook, especially if physics is new to you (I have never taken physics before until now, so it's extra tough for me). Keep up with the problem sets he assigns every week(due every Wednesday after class). Go to TA sessions. My TA was Ali. He did extra sessions ever week, even though he wasn't getting paid for them. He was pretty nice and really willing to help the students. Tuts was accessible, but that did not help me much. I spent a lot of time going over problems with him, but I didn't feel like they helped me much. He was very thorough when we worked on a problem, but by the time we got to the end of the problem I usually failed to see how it all came together. All in all, by the time you came to the end of the solution you would forget how you got there. This is partly because of the way he explains concepts(on a very basic level that seems far from the level of the problem itself) and because the problems he assigned and the problems he put on the exam were always very very VERY difficult. Even the TA tried to speak to him about giving us easier problems, but Tuts never listened to him. If you don't have prior exposure to physics, AVOID signing up for Tuts. Do everything you can to escape. I wish I had. I kept telling myself if I keep trying things will get easier, but trust me, it's not me, its HIM!

Dec 2010

Physics 1201 with Tuts was pretty straightforward - two dimensional motion through waves. The lectures were thorough (and easy enough to follow even if you hadn't looked at that chapter yet) and clear. Given that Tuts is apparently a big-shot who works at the large hadron collider in Switzerland, he's surprisingly accessible. He held review sessions on the weekends before all exams, makes time to meet with any student who has questions. The 1291 lab doesn't match up with the lectures for the most part, but you'd have miss a lot of labs to get a poor grade.

Dec 2010

To be honest, I was not impressed with Shaevitz's teaching ability. He is a decent teacher, but for the harder stuff has a difficult time explaining things clearly- he'll write a bunch of derivations and then solve a few problems using variables, not numbers, and then give you a number at the end which is hard to tell where it came from. The weekly quizzes you've read about are very much like the weekly problems-which can be difficult. I recommend going to see the TA during his office hours since he solves the problems clearly in a different manner than Shaevitz does which is usually clearer to understand. The midterm was definitely easier than the final, but this is necessary because the quizzes are worth 10% and the class average on any quiz is usually about an 80, and Shaevitz does not want to apply a curve to an already successful class. Essentially, my experience with Shaevitz was fine, but I feel like I did not necessarily learn physics per se. Instead, I can regurgitate the homework question techniques onto my quiz / test papers and do well. I say take Shaevitz if possible if you are just in it for the good grade.

Dec 2010

Shaevitz is an amazing professor. Cheeky and entertaining, while still very informative. He writes all his notes on the board and fields questions from the repeat (as some in the pre-med world would call) "offenders." He is great at answering these or pushing off the ones that really will be covered later or the annoying girl in every lecture class just asks cause. He intersperses the lectures with amazing demonstrations that he is passionate about. Once splashing himself with water and still proceeded to put on a hard hard, squat on a cart and propel himself with a fire extinguisher - all to explain force. Really a great clear and devoted professor. Even when he missed the last week and a half (leaving it to a cute TA) to go to the SOUTH POLE.

Jul 2010

Professor Zelevinsky started out completely affable. I found her charming and exceptionally brilliant when explaining the beginning materials, i.e. chapters 1-8. After which, I had no idea what she was talking about, mainly because she teaches verbatim from the textbook. This is fine for the easy chapters on mechanics, but once approaching simple harmonic motion and waves, I was completely and totally lost and so was the rest of the class. Her exams were another problem all together. I'd have respected her written exams, but only if I had received a practice exam that was of the same model. Her first midterm I did remarkably well on, only because it was simple material and my calculus helped me through. However, for the second midterm, I royally bombed. I prepared more for that exam than the first and was pissed by the grading. I later found out that though I had the correct answer for one of the problems, I should have derived the equation that I used (I chose to memorize it since she did not give us a formula sheet for the first exam). This is ridiculous. If you are going to make someone derive something, put it in the f&%^ instructions. I am also disappointed that we did not go over thermodynamics and fluids since I feel this are more important topics than waves (all the other physics professors at Columbia teach these topics and not waves). Thinking back to the beginning of the course, maybe she wasn't the best instructor, but I just didn't realize it until the material was difficult. I would say don't take her, but Aprile is a nightmare and Budick probably isn't much better. The physics department at Columbia is a disaster. I would rather have Pontus (the saving grace in the physics department) teach the class than some research genius who can't answer simple questions.

May 2010

This is the course evaluation I submitted for the class, almost verbatim. Hope you find this helpful: ----------------------------------------------------------------------- She is one of the most effective instructors I have had in my undergraduate career, and probably will be through my whole formal education. Professor Zelevinsky and Christina Romer, my economics professor and now helping the Obama administration communicate economic policies, both fight for first place in terms of teaching effectiveness/clarity. These two individuals are examples of two great scholars who happen to be excellent, excellent teachers. In all honesty, Prof Zelevinsky may actually get my number one spot as econ was my undergrad major whereas Physics is my only science class at the college-level, and also, as physical or biological sciences, unlike econ and to an extent political science, are not and never were my forte. There are numerous examples of why I consider Professor Zelevinsky an undeniably effective teacher. Perhaps one of the many examples might help: In studying the concept of center of mass, I remember having a very difficult time understanding this relatively abstract concept while going over it in the book. TZ's lecture on it illuminated this concept really well, as she went from ensuring we had a strong sense of the basics behind the concept before moving on to the more complicated aspects of center of mass. She further solidified the concept by helping us see the concept more "physically" by throwing a disk marked with random points and the center of mass. (These are things that any professor could do, but it is different when a professor actually does explain in this way, in the very specific order and with the right amount of details that TZ without a doubt deliberately chooses to deliver in her lectures). An analogy would be a great story teller who knows when to emphasize something and when not to emphasize the other, and when, at which EXACT moment to deliver the punchline for the best effect. Teaching is an art that TZ is great at. (Not that this can't be learned, so no excuses for other professors). On this point, I want to fault the Physics department at Columbia for what I perceive failing to uphold its mission to teach Physics to generations of future citizens. I was, the semester prior to Spring 2010, a student in Budick's Physics 1 course. I scored well above the mean in both exams, but had to drop the course 2/3 of the way for personal reasons. Assigning him as a professor in an intro Physics course is irresponsible, as he teaches for students who already have a strong grasp of the subject. I would like to cite a specific incident that might support even if not prove my contention: After a lecture last semester with Budick, I remember waiting in line to ask him a question. In the meantime, he was talking to a student who was not sure whether to take the class. This student explained to Budick that he had a strong background in Physics as he had done really well at an IB (International Baccalaureate) program, and thus far, was finding the subject quite easy. Budick gave him a fraternal nod, saying that this class was a fit for him. At the time I didn't think much about this. As time went on and I became more familiar with Budick's teaching style (not that he has one), I beagn to suspect that Budick was only teaching to students who already had a strong Physics background. At best, the Columbia physics department is creating the sense that Physics is not for everyone, and especially the case if you are at Columbia (posturing that is detrimental to learning, and usually reserved for people or institutions insecure of their status), at worst, you are perpetuating social inequality; you are teaching people who for one reason or another (educated parents, magnet school background, "naturally gifted" in the sciences) already have a strong background in the subject, and leaving behind others who don't. (Uneducated parents, students of a culture or economic background with a modus operandus different from the one that is best suited to understanding basic physics). Your role as an educational institution is to teach, elevate individuals, not to stimulate at the detriment of other students those who would have done fine even without your intervention. Going back to having taken Budick's course the prior semester, you may be tempted to conclude that that is the reason why I perhaps found TZ's teaching so effective. I think my assessment of TZ's teaching above indicates otherwise, and the fact that although I found the chapters on Rolling, Rotation, Oscillations and Waves difficult (subjects which I had no prior knowledge of and which I never touched on during my time as a Physics I student with Budick), I can say with certainty that I was able to grasp them enough to at least have a way of beginning to become more familiar with these concepts through my own review and through doing problems from the book). Without having been given this preliminary background by Professor Zelevinsky, I would have had to spend a minimum of give and take 20 or so hours to merely understand the the basics needed as a starting point (which would have been the case had Budick been my professor). Professor Zelevinsky is an incredibly effective instructor. That coupled with intelligent and communicative TAs (where I assume that being able to communicate you are best able to "transfer" knowledge to others, or at least best able to guide a student in learning the subject most effectively) like Pontus Ahlqvist (and Daniel Chapman), made for a very effective learning experience. This team should not be a sporadic and random luxury for students trying to learn basic Physics, it should be the standard for learning Physics at Columbia. You insult students who want to learn basic physics by assigning Budick as a Physics I or II instructor. If you want to bring prestige to your department, I am sure there are better, more effective and more creative ways to do so. Give EVERY single student who steps into your department the chance to learn basic physics. In a larger social context, contribute to eliminating social inequalities by simply giving students of ALL background the chance to learn basic Physics from Professor Zelevinsky.

Apr 2010

I'm currently taking her General Physics class and so far it is has been a pretty awful experience. She seems like a nice person, but there is literally zero teaching going on in this class. Every lecture is word for word from the book and, occasionally, we get a physics demonstration which makes me feel something close to pity for her. The demonstrations never actually demonstrate what what we're learning - mostly because the supplies are so crappy - and everyone just snickers and shakes their head. These facts might not seem all that important until you consider that you're paying so much for this course (both monetarily and mentally/physically) to essentially teach yourself the material. The exams are also, in my opinion, unreasonable for a few reasons: this is the first time she's teaching this course so she gives you Professor Dodd's exams from last year as practice. These exams ARE reasonable. The questions are challenging, but pages of formulas are provided so you don't have to waste time deriving things. Zelevinsky has you prepare for her exams with these and homework problems, but never tells you what formulas you'll need and winds up giving you a 1 page sheet with basic equations. However, the exam questions are just as hard or in most cases even harder AND you have to derive the needed formulas. Because of this you are not likely to ever completely finish unless you have excellent math skills. This is extra frustrating because she says things like "the exams will test your physics skills, not your math skills" or "the problems will be easier than homework problems" - none of this is true. I would recommend staying away from this course unless you really like paying a lot of money to teach yourself (which is probably why you're taking CU classes to begin with) and are really speedy deriving equations.

Jan 2010

Having suffered through a terrible AP physics instructor in high school, I can only conclude that those who gave Prof. Shaevitz negative reviews either had their standards inflated by one of those rare brilliant high school physics teachers or are general Columbia misanthropes who love to complain about every required class. I found Prof. Shaevitz to be a wonderful instructor. He must have listened to the comments of the people who complained about too many derivations, because he only did one or two the entire semester and then apologized for doing so. I was shocked that such a brilliant physicist was taking the time to teach the most basic physics class at Columbia and not even half-assing it so that he could keep his tenure. Prof. Shaevitz was more than willing to meet with students outside class, conducted an optional recitation in which he helped clarify concepts and problems, and on top of that did review sessions before every test, even shortening his lunch break so that the majority of students would be able to attend. The problem sets, quizzes, and tests were very straightforward and didn't contain a bit of material that he didn't cover in class. My only complaint is that the assignments were easy enough that one had to score very high to beat the's my first science class at Columbia where an 89 was a B+.

Nov 2009

Postbac Premed here. Unfortunately all the reviews I've read about this professor are accurate. Physics is hard and dense, especially with this particular text chosen for the class. Prof Aprile has confused deriving equations for teaching the logic behind the physics, often relying on our ability to integrate and substitute terms rather than helping us develop an understanding (or a stratety) of physics. Her lectures lend themselves to students who memorize facts (often loosely and without reason), not to students who want to learn the science. Because of this, application of the sicence to more involved problems which require a creative science mind are nearly impossilbe, and because of this, no real appreciation of the subject can be achieved. Additionally, she is more focused on how many chapters we get through rather than if we acutally learn something. Her lectures, therefore, are ill-prepared and often rushed--and because of this, she often writes incorrect formulas and often confuses terms, all the while complaining that we dont have enough time to finish anything. Her TA, in particular, Pontus, has been a great asset to her class, however, by attempting to answer the "why's" behind the calcuations. Other than that, I truly felt that I taught myself physics this semester, often poorly. I am impressed with Columbia's lack of interest in the quality of it's professors in this regard. And while Prof Aprile is clearly brilliant and an amazing researcher, I think the University needs to re-evaluate its priorities with regards to teaching it's students who are not only spending a sum of money, but who also do want to learn.

Oct 2009

She is very bad at lecturing and the students are definitely not helping. The students ask her questions that slow down the whole process of learning for everyone else. If you take her class, you better suck it up and read the book because her lectures will not help you.

Jun 2009

I'm personally very surprised at the favorable reviews of Shaevitz here. I found him to range from awful to mediocre. His lectures are dry and dull and rarely teach the material well; most of the class didn't bother to show up. I think part of the problem is that he spends his time doing derivations rather than examples of how to solve problems. On top of that, the textbook (Halliday) is mediocre to say the least. First semester (mechanics) was to me much, much easier than second semester (e&m). In fact, this class began to absolutely torture me second semester, much in part because he couldn't/didn't adequately explain the concepts, and these concepts are NOT simple. This review is not based off of my getting a bad grade (I got As both semesters) but because it was such a terrible experience. Try to avoid Shaevitz, if at all possible.

May 2009

A few things, so you know where I'm coming from: - I am not that smart (average at best) - I am not good at math (seriously, there is no engineer in me) - I am not good at solving problems. - The right hand rule made me cry. - I got an A in this class both semesters. Professor Budick is not a terribly inspiring teacher, but this course could have been worse. I appreciate his enthusiasm for the class and he really does care about the material, which is rare in any intro course. That said, other reviewers are not wrong that his teaching strategies are pretty disorganized and can be incredibly confusing at times. This class is by no means a piece of cake, and you will have to work HARD, but I disagree with the reviews that say that it is impossible to do well in this class. I have a hard time imagining that someone who hired tutors and studied every possible hour of the day (as reviewer: January '06 -- maybe he's changed since then, though) would do so poorly in this class. This is what I did: I read every chapter and took notes before I went to lecture, I did every homework assignment and turned it in on time, I did every practice exam at least three times. When I didn't understand something, I never simply looked at the solution. I had a tutor with whom I met once a week (this is free if you are postbac), and I made sure to ask every question I could. The trick to doing well in this class is to understand the problems backwards and forwards. He combines concepts on the exams, and it becomes tricky. He is not a great professor because he doesn't really teach you how to approach the problems and break them down step by step. However, if you do enough problems, you can acquire this skill yourself. I didn't do many more problems than the ones that were assigned and the ones he gave us at the beginning of every class. But this is a lot. In the beginning of each semester the homeworks took me about 5-6 hours. By the end of each semester I was down to about 2 hours (and don't give up towards the end of second semester, because the subject matter gets more complex, but the homework problems become insanely easy because he knows he is not going into enough depth to assign hard problems. People have said that the actual exams are hundreds of times harder than the practice exams, but this isn't true either. I do agree that the actual exams are harder, but I think that it is also harder because you don't have the security of checking your answers as soon as you finish the problems. Everyone is giving strategies to do well in this class, but no single formula is going to work for everyone. Figure out which study habits work best for you. The most important thing to do in this class, though, is to understand the concepts -- if you can do that, and then do problems over and over again, you will be able to get at least an 80 on the exams.

Apr 2009

A genuinely nice guy. That being said, he is not the best of lecturers. Fortunately, Prof. Shaevitz is very aware that Physics can sometimes be very tedious and boring so he does make the course as straightfoward as possible. Personally I came into the class with absolutely no experience in Physics as I did not take the course in High School but I was able to follow along with the lectures (provided I did the problem sets) and managed to stay awake through most of them. If you are a Physics newbie like I was the material is quite intimidating at first but I promise it gets easier to understand as the semester progresses and Prof. Shaevitz is not out to get you with trick questions. He really wants to see that you understand the material through the weekly quizes (most calculations are very simple and he doesn't care about significant figures.) He is very approachable and answers all questions and e-mails. Don't expect to be won over by his oratory skills, but if you want a no-nonsense Physics course that won't kill you, this is the one to take.

Jan 2009

Outstanding professor. You definitely should take this course if you can get in. Always approachable and answers e-mails. Always positive and helpful. Teaching for over 20 years so he has his system and you have to learn it (do homeworks and practice problems always -- do them multiple times). Few, if any, curveballs during the semester on quizzes and midterm although the final did have some tricky problems and it's 40% of your grade. That said, I worked like a dog because I did not have a physics background. Attending recitations is critical to really understanding how to do the problems and ok (I would say recommended) to attend several recitations during the week. Attending physics help room and getting some tutoring before exams is also useful. What I was told is that the time you put into the course is exactly what you get out of it physics learning -wise and grade-wise and I would say that is 100% true here. To me that's refreshing -- you don't have to worry about tricks and nuances. Professor Shaevitz is as straightforward as you can get. Just learn the material/practice problems really well and you'll get a good grade. I'm curious how Physics II will go as I heard the material is more difficult...

Dec 2008

This Review is for Physics F1201 (The evening General Physics class primarily taken by pre-meds). I personally cannot recommending taking Physics with Prof. Budick if you have other options (more than likely you will not, but if there are openings in Shaevitz's or Dodd's class I would highly recommend trying to get in). I actually got a 4.0 in Budick's class but that had nothing to do with Budick. His lectures generally always follow the same format: derive and explain a few equations, give some anecdotes or go off on some tangents (no joke - sometimes his tangents can last for 15 minutes or so of your precious lecture time), then do some sample problems. These are never helpful because Budick always does them in 5 seconds, rarely delving deeply into how to setup the problems or typical issues students encounter with such problems - he just goes straight to the solution. How did I get an A? I did all the assigned readings on schedule, submitted every homework on time (having done all the problems myself and reviewing even-numbered problems with friends - odd-numbered problems have answers in the back of the book), and I did every single other practice problems that was given to us - practice exams, practice finals, and so on. I am a book learner so I didn't have much trouble learning from the book (and I had taken A LOT of math classes as an undergrad). If you know you can learn technical/mathematical stuff from books, you'll probably be ok. Just know that Budick himself won't be of much help. He posts solutions to all the homeworks and practice exams that he gives out but they can be incredibly cryptic as, again, his solutions are never geared towards being a helpful resource to explain things to struggling students. They are simply two-line solutions where half the math is done in Budick's head. Nine times out of ten I had to spend more time figuring out how Budick got to his solution than I did figuring out the problem. His midterms and finals are generally a notch of difficulty above the homeworks, but he does give you the practice exams (exams from previous years) so you will know what to expect at least in terms of level of difficulty. Workload, for me, was around 7 hours a week. The course generally moves at the pace of 2 chapters per week, with homeworks due for each chapter. So most weeks you will be reading 2 chapters and doing 2 problem sets (6-7 problems from the back of the book). My guess is that if you have difficulty with Physics, this time could even double, or more. I'd say a 7 hour estimate would be on the low-end for most students. If you have no choice and have to take Budick - there's no reason to be frightened, you will just have to do pretty much all of the work to understand the material yourself. Do all the readings, make sure you understand all the sample problems done throughout the chapter, DO EVERY PROBLEM YOURSELF (and do not just give a half-assed attempt and then go check the answer in the back). Just FYI - a friend of mine would not keep up with their homeworks and before the test would just go over the answers to problems to make sure they understood them. This friend did not do well and eventually dropped the class. The key to doing well in this course (especially with Budick) is to really try every problem yourself and try and arrive at the answer yourself, not just look at the answer and "understand how it's done." You will probably see a bunch of reviews about how Budick is a nice guy. I agree - he is a nice guy and you will probably initially be charmed by his demeanor. In the end however, my opinion of him as a Physics instructor is that he is inadequate and does not appear to put very much time into the course or changing things to help those who struggle more. (The Physics dept. in general at Columbia appears to be this way and seems very poorly run. You'll see what I mean when you take physics lab). Best of Luck.

Dec 2008

Sets you up for success! You are never blindsided by material from left field on the quizes, tests, or finals. Wonderful set-up.

Dec 2008

Only read this review if you want the cold, nasty, and unrestrained truth about this professor. Eghm.......I like to call his class, "Budick's funhouse", because you never know what to expect, and you really never know what's going on. From the moment his vague, haughty syllabus lands in your hands, to every single lesson, to every single midterm, practice test, ect... . Now let me just give examples because they really speak for themselves. Budick slathers even the most simplest portions of the class with some pathetic attempt to appear eclectic, or something, it' s very sad. For instance, a little thing called potential energy, which is basically "if I pick something up, it has more potential energy, because it's higher in the air", arguably the simplest concept in the class. Professor Budick decides to call this "energy by virtue of postion" *ahhh can't you feel the haughty bullshit just float through the air* Of what virtue would that be, the right and wrongs of postion? Does that postion donate to charity? No! This is just an unessary complication of a simple concept in a already inherently challenging subject. This is what you will deal with through the hard stuff as well and it's a miracle that everyone doesn't end up with flasks in the class, as there medical school GPA is threatened by Budick's fun house. Maybe this haughty BS will translate into very descriptive and detailed answers to the homework and practice test problems, where you can at least teach yourself.....Wrong! Either Zerox, or get a good hard look at your 5 page homework you put you precious time into, because it goes into some black hole where you never see it again. The grades began posting after say.....4 weeks, but you need the corrections back to refine your skills. "Well some homework would have to have come back before the midterm right"? Wrong! The first, and basically the second midterm were taken without geting any homework back. And Budick's famous practice test answers: I'm pretty sure he wrote these while he was off-roading his minivan (well he looks like he'd have a minivan). They are the most illegible (and this is coming from a chap with pretty bad handwriting) utterly god-awfully solutions I've ever seen in my life. The complexities of Microsoft word were to hard for him to grasp I suppose. Now the saddest part of all about this class, is the effect it starts taking on the crop of dedicated and ready to learn students in the class. It's similar to the effect of any desperate and hopeless situation, people start developing Coping mechanisms. "Well I hear Budick get you ready for the MCATs better than anybody", thats lovely, but last time I checked I signed up for Physics, not Physics for the MCATS. "I think it's just that Physics is hard" physics is a challenging subject, but the challenge in Budick's class is to overcome "him", so that you can get to the subject. In doing this you have to tear down miles of slithery BS in your notes. There is a surefire way to pay attention to this dark and insulting class however, and not because of his cheeky little jokes he victimizes you with, or his stories about some crap that will end on a mercy laugh inducing punch-line, but because it was like a burning train-wreck: it's awful, it's a tragedy, and you can't stop looking. In conclusion, my suggestion, DO WHAT EVER YOU HAVE TO DO to get into another section, or do anything BUT take Budick's class. Many of the students who are post-bac's (meaning they've had at least 32 professors if my math is correct) and agree the Budick is thee most disturbingly awful professor to teach them. Many of my classmates, and myself as well, will forever remember this class as the biggest insult to academics and a dedicated student body that they have ever seen.........taught by an ego-maniac that could give a rat's *ss about anyone, learning anything.

Dec 2008

I think he tries really hard to make the class painless because he knows this is pre-med physics, and people aren't actually interested in the subject. The weekly quizzes might be annoying, but they keep you on top of the material. The homework problems are all optional but helpful (and very similar to quizzes). He's a clear lecturer and takes the time to answer questions in class. You don't really need to go to lecture, since he does follow the book pretty closely, but he often goes over the trickier homework problems in class, so it's helpful just to hear his explanations. He genuinely loves physics. You can tell just by seeing how much fun he has with the live demonstrations in class. He seriously gets pretty excited about them. And the demos are probably the best part of the class anyway. He's pretty accessible by email and holds multiple office hours during the week, although he's not terribly helpful during office hours. Everything in this class is incredibly transparent, including the exams. He gives out practice midterms and finals, and they're usually pretty close to what he actually ends up giving. The midterm is cake, but the final is a little harder (though still reasonable - nothing impossible). He's also very fair about what material shows up on the exam. This is probably one of the easiest V1201 sections.

Dec 2008

He's a nice character who seems genuinely interested in both physics and the students' performance. Makes a terribly boring subject painless with relatively lively lectures and fun demonstrations (although admittedly I went to class rarely toward the end). Quizzes are easy-peasy. Midterm was fair and pretty easy. Do the homework, it is very very similar to quizzes and exams.

Jan 2008

Dodd is a very engaging lecturer and makes the principles he's discussing relevant using examples and many demonstrations. Some of these work better than others but they are always interesting. His lectures can sometimes seem like he is reading the book out loud but it is better to go and follow along than to try to decipher his lecture notes after class - they won't make a lot of sense. He covers a lot of material in 75 minutes, averaging a chapter per class. Reading the chapter before class will help you understand the lecture, rather than struggling to grasp the concepts for the first time as he zips through them. Problem sets are time-consuming, especially if you haven't read the textbook. Try to find people to work with and definitely attend the discussion sections, where the TA goes over selected questions. Midterms and finals are difficult, requiring actual thought. The questions are often slightly-reworked version of the harder questions in the textbook, so make sure to practice them. You'll do better spending your time working out those problems than re-reading your notes and the text over and over again, unless you're totally lost.

Nov 2007

easy A if you take the quizzes seriously and study the HW. Midterm is exactly like the practice one. Final can throw you off a bit, but it's not that bad. If you ace the quizzes and midterm (which is pretty easy to do) then even if you bomb the final, you will come out with a pretty good grade

Apr 2007

Keys to maximizing your grade for the time you put in for Prof. Budick's class. 1) Try to make it to at least 90% of the lectures (He doesn't post them online either). If you do this, you won't have to read the book. I found this out late. Use the book only to look up formulas, read some of the "Touchstone" examples when your stuck, and obviously to do the HW. 2) Study Budick's solutions to HW. If you don't do the HW, don't worry about it, just make sure you get the solutions and then go back and see how Budick does the problems. I guarantee you that you will learn more from this method in 30-45 minutes per than if you bust your ass doing the HW for 5 hours by yourself. This is especially true in the later part of the course, (after about chapter 12). 3) When Budick hands out the practice exams, you should do them until it hurts. My advice is to write out each test at least 2, probably no more than 3 times. There is no better way to study for the test. If you do this, the formulas will become second nature (you won't waste a minute staring at the formula sheet). More importantly, you will know the question that Budick takes from the practice exams cold. If you get less than 25/25 on the question that Budick gives from the p exam, then you didn't study them enough, and you can't blame Budick for that. If you have time, read through book questions and target the ones that look like something Budick might put on the test. He DOES, at least second semester, put one question straight from the book HW on the tests. There should really be no more than 10 HW problems that look like "Budick test questions" so you should nail that question too. For the final, I wouldn't bother with the HW anymore. There are so many practice exam questions (40) that I think the little time you have to study is best spent on that. Take home message - Don't waste your time reading the book, do the practice exams again and again. First two means/medians (whatever he announces in class): 64, 55 (or so). Follow these steps, and you should be able to beat these means pretty easily. For those taking F1202, watch out, because 2/3 to 3/4 of the class switches to another professor and you're left with the 45 people who did well with Budick. first two means/medians: 77, 86. These are hard to beat. If I had it to do again, I might take Budick for F1201 and switch for 1202. About Budick: very nice. Good lecturer. Smart guy. Will give the class extra time on tests. He is not sadistic, don't be scurred, bud.

Jan 2007

Just want to second that positive review. I was totally freaked out by some of the negative things people had to say about this guy. But I actually think he is an excellent teacher. He's challenging and moves quickly, but explains things really thoroughly and actually cares whether or not people get it. He makes a huge effort to teach well--he takes feedback, and actually listens. All the homework problems he assigns are odd so its easy enough to check the back of the book to make sure you get it. Anyway don't believe the hype, he's a good guy.

Jan 2007

I liked Professor Budick and thought that he was generally approachable and friendly. That said, his tests are very tricky and will be very difficult if you do not fully understand the material. He gave the class several opportunities to offer suggestions as to how he could improve his lectures -- some of which were implemented as the semester went on. Lecturing Style: He goes through the book at a rate of 1 chapter per class (this is the same regardless of professor) and takes the class through derivations of the new formulas and 2-3 sample problems. Although he sometimes breezes too quickly through the math, he did respond to requests to slow down. Budick also assigns "next time" problems from upcoming chapters which he will go through in the next class, if you are inclined to work ahead. Tests: Budick's tests are very difficult...but they are not impossible. You need to know the material forwards and backwards because he will often combine multiple concepts into one problem. He will hand out practice tests about 2 weeks before the exams -- these tests are often (as other reviewers have said) much easier than the actual test will be. However, the topics covered from year to year will not change and the practice tests will give you a sense of what he will include. Budick also includes at least 1 problem from the previous exams on each test he gives (and occasionally one from the homework). But for the most part, expect the exam questions to be new. Suggestions: 1. Get another physics book and do as many practice problems as possible before the exam. 2. If you have questions, go to his office hours and ask him. He is very friendly and wants to help. 3. You can read the book, but Budick will not test on anything that he did not discuss in lecture. If there are topics in the book that he did not cover, you will not be tested on them.

Jan 2007

I strongly, strongly disagree with the last two reviews. Ok, he is a nice guy and isn't out to get you, but he is HARD. Just because you do all the homework, practice exams, etc. does not mean you will get a decent or fair grade. I worked harder in this class than any class ever and did not receive a good grade. I did all the practice tests, had a tutor and everything, and still somehow did poorly. When it comes right down to it the tests are MUCH more difficult than the practice tests (even though one of the questions is bound to be from them) and it is very hard to finish on time. The final was excruciating and contained a lot of problems that were not emphasized on any of the practice tests (minus the two taken directly from the tests). Also, there seemed to be a lot of grading problems- we were told we would receive partial credit if we at least wrote down formulas and showed work on the problem, however, in many cases no credit was given and there were discrepancies in the way the TA's graded the exams. When the mean for all the exams is around 55%, something is clearly wrong. All that said, I am taking him again this semester because you will learn a lot from him and will be extremely well prepared for whatever is to come. So anyone who says you'll get an A if you just work hard is probably either just a physics genius or is lying.

Jan 2007

I really liked Prof. Shaevitz. He's a good teacher, he explains things well, he does good demonstrations (although not all of them work), and my favorite, he's always in a great mood; he's always smiling. The quizzes are okay, not too hard, and the exams are difficult but not too much so. He makes good study guides that you should do because the exams tend to follow them pretty closely. I'd highly recommend taking his class.

Sep 2006

Professor Dodd is my favorite teacher I have had at Columbia to date. Just to give you an idea of my perspective, I am a post-bacc premed. Professor Dodd had a great lecture style - while teaching rather dry material, his sense of humor and lovely accent make the material easier to swallow. He explained concepts simply and clearly. I would agree that his examples in class were a little too simple to be helpful at times. However, he was available to students during office hours and after class and was more than willing to go over difficult problems. He also talked a little about his own research and other current happenings in physics that were very interesting and at times applicable (without going overboard... I didnt feel like he was wasting class time or anything).

May 2006

General physics I under professor Dodd was very enjoyable. He is clear and patient, and has a witty sense of humor. His assignments are difficult but he will poll the class and make adjustments. His first midterm was challenging but fair, while his second midterm was easier. You will be relatively successful in his class if you understand the homework problems completely, and review the difficult problems in the book. Professor Dodd gave a very fair curve, with a B+ as the mean. I really enjoyed this physics class although I started slacking towards the end. Sometimes the problems Dodd goes over in class are too simple or he generalizes it. His demonstrations are an absolute riot!!

Feb 2006

Jeremy is a rock star on the scale of Mick and Keith. He is a great teacher, explains even the vaguest concept from lecture in an engaging and interesting way-- he made going to recitation terrific.

Jan 2006

Hailey is a wonderful lecturer, and a highly facile email tutor. I never went to office hours, he just explained all my questions on email even on weekends and late at night. I am a post-bacc, so I haven't seen math for awhile- but his class was very reasonable. It isn't hard to do well gradewise in this class- the mean is a B (probably due to the fact that some people who are not trying at all may get Cs). I think the median is a B+, so just about everyone is going to get a B+ or better in the class. The midterms are almost exactly like the study sheets he gives, and the first midterm this Fall semester 2005 was not as hard as other reviewers say it was, if you actually listened to the man say in lecture he would test us on nobel prize winners and would include short answer questions. He tells you in class- "this is a problem I love to give on exams" or "i would not be surprised to see this on an exam" so if you pay attention to his lecture- you're as good as gold. Jeremy Carlo the TA was a rockstar- just don't bother emailing him, he doesn't do email. The homeworks were much harder than the exams, don't worry about them- just hand them in, it doesn't even matter what you get on them.

Jan 2006

I don't even know where to begin with this teacher. I'll start by saying that I've been at Columbia for almost two years and prior to this course the lowest grade I'd earned was an A-. Then I made the mistake of registering for Professor Budick's section of Physics I. His lectures are insufferable. His stories were entertaining initially but as the semester wore on and I still had no grasp of the material I found him infuriating. Do not go to class and expect him to clarify anything. He will probably make things even more confusing since he can't teach to save his life. He spends a ton of time on the most irrelevant details and no time explaining what you actually need to understand. And you can't turn to the text for help because it's as unclear as he is. He assigns homework weekly. This seems very reasonable until you realize that you've just turned in Chapter 5 homework and on that same day Professor Budick will lecture on Chapter 9. In addition, the assignments do not contribute to your grade so you can spend hours preparing them and get nothing for it. The pace of the course is impossible and insane. Our section covered 5 more chapters than the other one. Before each test, Professor Budick handed out practice exams. These consisted of tests from previous semesters and were much more difficult than anything we'd ever seen in our homework assignments. But nothing could prepare me for the actual exams. I studied for considerable amounts of time and still felt like I had no idea what was going on. I left each test certain that I had failed it. The final was absolutely ridiculous and was worth 50% of our grade. Before the final, I had a B/B+ in this class. I just got my semester grade yesterday and ended up with a C+ in this course. It really doesn't matter how much you study for this class. You will not be rewarded for hard work. Professor Budick's class ruined my semester and my GPA. I spent every waking moment worried about my physics grade. I hired tutors. I studied like crazy. None of it helped me. I had friends in this class who had exactly the same experience. Even my friends who did well in this class refused to register for Budick for Physics II. Do not, under any circumstances, take this class. It's not worth the pain and suffering. If you don't decide to just give up after the first exam, you will study your ass off, worry incessantly, blow money on tutors and still not necessarily end up with a decent grade.

Jan 2006

Let me preface this review by saying that I did well in this course, so this is not coming from a biased source. I am not, in other words, just trying to get back at a teacher who gave me a bad grade. Physics with professor Budick will literally ruin your semester unless you are A) a complete natural at physics and B) willing to work 6+ hours a day at only physics. I am not just saying this. I have seen very very smart people work very very hard and not do well in this class. All in all professor Budick is a nice affable man. He tries to make class fun with amusing stories and experiments. However, his actual teaching style is extremely confusing. He leactures on one chapter each class, which is 2 chapters a week, but yet he assigns very long homework assignments like once every .75 weeks so by the middle of the semester we are turning in homework for chapter 6 when he is lecturing on chapter 11. Professor Budick will spend literally hours explaning the derivations of formula's that you should only have to memorize and then speeds through complex problems. let me give you an example of one of these problems "if the polar ice caps melted and the oceans rose 50 feet how much longer or shorter would a day be" (this was a question from our final exam). These exams are another issue. Professor Budick will give four practice exams a month prior to the test. these are actual axams that he gave lets say between ten and five years ago. but as you go through these exams, you realize that the difficulty level is increasing with each test. And even when you understand all of the questions in the practice test and all of the questions in the book, you will show up for the day of your test and see questions that are more difficult than any question you have ever seen before. In other words, there is literally nothing that you can do to prepair yourself for these questions. The kids that have a natural talent and who want to work hard will do well and everybody else will walk out of the tests wanting to cry. I hope this has been helpful

Jan 2006

I found Professor Haley's sarcasm to be so refreshingly sarcastic, it made up for the fact that his exams are VERY challenging. The good side is that he curves generously and is a GREAT lecturer. You learn a lot of physics, even for this "premed" level course. Overall, I would reccommend Professor Haley. He is very intelligent and actually cares about his students even though he has every right to be snob with his 100 million dollar grant from NASA.

Jan 2006

Prof. Hailey is a great teacher, he takes a somewhat bland and difficult subject and makes it fairly interesting. The class spends a deal of time on derivations, but the examples are extremly useful for exams. I'd say about 1/2 of the final came right out of his lecture notes. He does care about students, holding review sessions and helping to comensate for a bad midterm.

Dec 2005

Take the time to study his review sheets, do the problems in the book whether assigned or not, attend TA sessions, and you'll do well. He's quite accessible. He may at first seem abrasive and dismayed at your lack of understanding this or that concept, but give him time to loosen up. You'll find that he is engaged, will take the time to explain, and is encouraging. I agree with the November 21 reviewer that it is unfortunate he will not be teaching this class second semester.

Nov 2005

When I found out he wouldn't be teaching second-semester premed physics, I felt like someone in my family had died. Hailey's class is pure delight. He brings so much enthusiasm and wit to the lecture, and somehow he creates an intimate, informal atmosphere in the 200-person class. He makes a lot of self-deprecating jokes, but -- come on -- he's GOT to know how awesome he is. We all know it, and we're nowhere near as brilliant as he is.

Mar 2005

The man is a nightmare. His tests are just ridiculous. DO NOT TAKE HIS CLASS! Sell everything you own to get into Blaer or Tuts. Professor Budick doesn't believe in teaching you the concepts. The only thing that he's interested in is plowing through the textbook twice as fast as any other section and proving that he's enough of a hard-ass to be worthy of Columbia (strictly speaking, he's a "professor" at NYU and only an "instructor" here). He'll give you his old exams from NYU which are a joke compared to the one he throws at the Columbia students. That's because he knows Columbia is filled with heartless postbaccs and other ruthless premeds who he can sadistically abuse to his black heart's content. There is no way to do well in his class unless you already know physics cold. The texbook is horrible, and he teaches directly out of the textbook (what little he does teach). He won't do a problem in class that even closely resembles the homework problems (a massive amount, due every class). You won't be able to do the homework problems because they'll be the hardest problems you've seen yet--until the exam which makes the homework look easy. Budick's philosophy is that the exam should be the hardest problems you've ever seen up until that point, which is a really ridiculous way to teach. One problem on an exam didn't in any way resemble a homework or practice problem. When the class kvetched about it, Budick's explanation was: "There was a similar type problem located in the vicinity of an assigned homework problem." So in addition to the 30 or so problems due each class, you have to do all the rest in the chapter. Of course, you cover 500+ pages of the text and have to know every practice problem, roughly 50 a chapter (about 2000 total). One time a student complained that he was taking 5 hours to do the practice problems (so 10 hours/week) and Budicks explanation: "If you're only taking 5 hours to do a homework set, you should be TAing this course. I reccomend 8 hours per set." Because we all have 16 hours of extra time every week to do physics homework. His E and M section is even worse, because he can't teach it. All of us who still have him are screwed. I'm dropping out of Columbia because of him. I'm not paying this kind of money to suffer through some masochistic bs. If you want to see a major ego in the last years of his decline, pithying for a post at Columbia and willing to destroy his students to do it, take this class. If you want to see a man practically peddling every last shred of dignity he has to sell out his students and make a career jump, take this class. Otherwise do yourself a favor and take anyone, absolutely anyone else.

Jan 2005

An outstanding physicist and a gifted instructor are not two things which Columbia is great at making out of a single human brain. By the end of the course, you will realize that Blaer is a rare exception to this general premise. At first, the succession of blackboards spent on the rigors of a single part of one problem may bore the hell out of you, depending on your reason for being in the class, and on top of that, your notes may be next to useless. But then the exams roll around, and all the people you hear walking around saying how easy their classes are start crying about how they got totally raped on their exams. And you? You attended the review session the previous SundayÂ…studied the review notes with anything more than zero presence of mind, and got in the 90s. BlaerÂ’s problem-solving approach to the class really succeeds in tying everything presented together into a few basic concepts which you very likely understood years before you were accepted to Columbia. Highly recommended classÂ…but you must learn to trust his ingenious approach.

Dec 2004

Very straightforward and fair. The tests and final are very similar to the homework problems and the practice tests given out a few weeks beforehand. The lectures are pretty average, meaning that the material gets covered in a dull fashion but is broken up with generally unrelated anecdotes. I only wish that we had an extra credit problem on Budick's cat considering all the class time he spent talking about it. Still, it is a very interesting, if not inspiring, class that that will both filfill your science requirement and give you a basic introduction to physics.

Dec 2004

Simply put, the man's amazing. He takes entire chapters worth of material and condenses them into one or two simple, easy-to-remember equations. He defines all his terms clearly and backs up all of his explanations with helpful examples. He's also extremely understanding of student concerns and easy to approach. The textbook is awful, but even he encourages you to ignore it sometimes. If you're planning to take physics and see his name listed next to a course, do anything you can to get into it--you will love the decision forever.

Dec 2004

Blaer is the real deal. Definitely take a class with him if you get the chance.

Nov 2004

Professor Blaer is a god, but Satan must have created this awful, awful textbook that is used in the course. Although the problems Blaer chooses are exactly what he focuses on, the answer key is full of errors, the reading is useless, and most of the problems are horribly tangential. So once again, amazing teacher, pitiful textbook.

Jul 2004

I didn't have the negative experience with Gersten mentioned by most of the reviewers below. Yes, the class is quite boring but I think the key is in reviewing the material and working on the homework problems prior to the lecture (all the HW and chapter assignments are detailed on the syllabus). That way you get your money's worth out of the lecture. Gersten really does have a sense of humor so if you can manage to stay awake during the evening class (and have reviewed the material), you should find it more or less enjoyable. To make your life more pleasant, I would highly recommend a textbook other than the Sears, Zemansky, and Young. The text is drier than the Sahara desert. I consulted Cutnell and Johnson in conjunction with the Sears study guide and then went back to the Sears text to do the assigned problems. Wouldn't have learned a thing otherwise. As far as Gersten's attitude towards students, I found him to be extremely kind; he seemed to sincerely want to help students pass his class. I also got help from Blaer who also, in my experience, was very keen on helping students interested in physics. I actually borrowed his Cutnell and Johnson text.

May 2004

I completely agree with the previous several reviews. Professor Tuts' lectures dumb down the information but are often very roundabout and cursory. Most of the material he covers in class is explained in a much more precise and presentable manner in the book. Instead, he needs to spend class times working on problems and applying the concepts to situations. On the rare occasions he does do examples, you go back to your book and find that they are already explained there. His problem sets are very selective - they start with a few easy problems in basic concepts but jump suddenly to challenge problems requiring a deep understanding of all the concepts, which can only be obtained (i think) if you do every problem in the book. Go to his study sessions and you'll see that only his grad student TAs are able to do them. You often need to know some key equation outside the scope of the class, and be able to make those connections. His tests are very hard - going to lectures, doing problem sets is not enough. He seems very comfortable with the fact that the mean is usually around 50, a B. Sure, do everything and you'll be guaranteed a B- or higher, but I worked very hard in this class and did not feel like all my effort was worthwhile. In the end, you just feel stupid, but Tuts pitied you and gave you a decent grade to make it all better. Yet, if he had done a better job teaching, going over the material he was going to test, maybe our class mean would be higher and we'd feel better about the grade we got. Sure, I'm a premed, but I'd rather get a C and learn the material well, then get raped by the tests and pull off a B+. What a crappy class.

May 2004

Professor Gersten is a good guy but he only has two 30-minute office hours per week, so you've got to get there early if you want to see him. It is not necessary to attend the class to do well. Read the book. Work the problems. Work the problems again. This is a self-taught course. Exams are variants of problems out of the book. Prof Gersten varies the exams from year-to-year, so review old exams, but do the HW over and over! HW problem sets turned in supposedly will help your grade in "borderline cases."

May 2004

Professor Tuts is a great teacher. He presents the material in a very clear way which is easy for the non-physics minded (which most of us are, even if we don't want to admit it) to understand. He is approachable and his office hours are very helpful. His exams are tough but not impossible. In response to one of the reviews above, he is not an ass. He is actually very funny and friendly if you get to know him. I have never seen him turn a student away. He will sit with you for hours until you understand the material. He received a teaching award this year, and I definitely think that he deserved it. If you have the opportunity to take a class with him, do it. You will not regret it.

Apr 2004

The reviews about Prof Gersten are pretty harsh, perhaps a bit too harsh. I don't think the class is nearly as bad as people make it out to be. Definitely one of the better physics profs out there. He knows his stuff and explains it well. Yes, the textbook is just damn awful. But this class does use the classic Sears, Zermansky and Young text which is in its 11th edition so someone must like the book. Prof Gersten suggests alternative textbooks in the class syllabus - do yourself a favor and get one of them. Prof Gersten tries to make the class interesting (material is somewhat boring). Lectures are coherent and well organized. He spends a bit too much time deriving formulas, but at least there are no proofs / derivations on the exams. He cracks jokes and presents a good lecture the old fashioned way (blackboard) and doesn't use powerpoint or overheads. Class is usually half empty because it is in the evening. I have found him helpful in office hours. The TA's for this class are also pretty good. If you need an off sequence class this is about as good as it gets. Exam questions are of practical nature and not theorectical ball busters that you usually get in a physics class.

Jan 2004

I completely disagree with most of these reviews. Tuts is extreemly hard. Even if you get a grasp of the material during class and homeworks, the exams are just ridiculous and do not in any way represent the material being taught. (Tuts himself struggled answering one question on the second exam) If you have previous experience with Physics, youll most likely be fine, but if this is your first physics class...GOOD LUCK. Youll need it.

Dec 2003

Pre-Meds should be thankful for Tuts' business-like approach to teaching Physics. His lectures include a few jokes to keep the mood light, but he does not pretend that all the students are Physics majors. He knows that his course is a requirement for many students, and he tries to make it as painless as possible. 40 out of 100 is the mean for most tests, making an A very doable and a B fairly easy.

May 2003

Godawful. The class material is quite simple, but the way Gersten drones in class and derives formulas he doesn't apply to problems makes every aspect of physics tedious, and you'll end up staring at his shiny bald head half covered with a combover and half with a yamaka. Expect to teach yourself --you'll save time and tedium.

May 2003

you know what, he sucks. Okay, so he explains stuff fairly clearly . . . he never, and i mean NEVER gives you any hint as to how to do a problem, and then the test comes around, and hello, you get totally raped. Both of the means for the midterms this semester were a 45. That is insane. most people answer the questions in "essay form" wherein they write down every frickin formula and physics concept they know in order to get some partial credit. it works.

Sep 2002

Professor Tuts is both incredibly brilliant and a great professor. He has an amazing ability to elucidate everything he teaches. He is also very approchable and often goes out of his way to help students during office hours. GO to them! The homeworks are reasonable in length, and if done with care, can pay off on test day. DO them!! Exams are reasonablly difficult, but are graded on a curve. Overall, Tuts makes physics a great experience at the end.

Aug 2002

To accompany the above glowing review of Professor Tuts, by popular demand here is a note about EXAMS and GRADING. It is an impressive system that worked well for us to be rewarded for our efforts. First, a big relief to many is that the professor provides a list of physics formulas to accompany the exam questions, so you don' t have to worry about forgetting them and you can concentrate on doing the problems. There are two in-class tests that covers material from the previous month's classes, and a 3-hour final that combines the last month of classwork and a cumulative test for the whole semester. Exams are reviewed by grad students under the supervision of the professor, and they can be fairly generous in giving partial credit for work done, so it is a good idea to show as much work as possible on the tests. So even if an exam is tough, in this way you can still achieve significant points toward your grade - by showing what you do know about a physics problem. If you are dissatisfied with your exam grade, you can resubmit the exam to the professor for a regrade. Letter grades are assigned to our scores on a curve, so we learned in class after the test what letter grade our score would represent. The class average is a B. Finally, the final grade may be adjusted by the professor, he said: if you are on the line between letter grades, a positive homework report (homework is also reviewed by grad students) can make the difference to get the higher grade. We really appreciated the professor scheduling special review sessions before each exam to go over practice tests and any of our questions. We felt pretty positive about the whole thing, that if we prepared and applied ourselves, we would be rewarded for that, and that encouraged us to work at it even more. It is a great class with a great professor.

Aug 2002

Highly recommended. An excellent professor. Totally professional, Prof. Tuts is fully committed to his class, and he treats his students with friendly respect. He is obviously a very experienced teacher (and very smart) and doesnÂ’t miss much. He has a sense of humor, and can be good fun (especially in demos). The professor comes to each lecture prepared with detailed notes, and often uses demonstrations and/or graphics (posted on website later). As other reviewers have noted, Prof. TutsÂ’ lectures are wonderfully clear, and he works through the material step-by-step, giving students time to take notes. ItÂ’s remarkable how well he communicates to such a large class and successfully engages both advanced students and those less fluent in physics. Some students who found high school physics difficult were relieved that the professor was able to make physics understandable - even interesting - for them; others felt his was an enjoyable challenge. His demonstrations of problem-solving can be mind-boggling at times, and are beneficial, if not inspiring, examples. Prof. Tuts is well organized, and takes advantage of the course website to manage the class with a minimum of paper, not only posting announcements, weekly problem sets due and then their solutions, but also providing useful information, such as special class notes, that ordinarily would be too logistically difficult to prepare and distribute. (Check out also his Physics Dept. website for personal background and research information and physics links for students.) Studying about one-and-a-half textbook chapters a week and doing the problems is a lot of work. Developing problem-solving skills is one goal of the course; therefore unless you already know all about it, the homework - although not obligatory - is essential practice in these skills, which are tested in exams. (ItÂ’s hard to categorize exams; it depends where you are at. The class average is a B.) Go to Recitation. Take advantage of the team of graduate students in the Help Room for assistance; maybe find one or two you find most helpful and meet with them regularly. If youÂ’ve read this far, here is something worth waiting for: the professor is an extraordinary guide to creative problem solving - and he will work with you at your level. If you take your question about a physics problem to him during office hours, which can be a group event, he will likely set you up at his blackboard and explore with you approaches to that physics problem, while you write everything down on the board. ItÂ’s valuable personal attention, and also helpful to watch. A visit not to be missed! So, all in all, for the prepared student, physics is possible; if you think you are an advanced student, you may still learn a lot; but for a dedicated student at whatever level, here is the possibility for an outstanding learning experience with - as another reviewer has aptly stated - a full professor who cares.

May 2002

Although I took these classes from him a little while ago, when I saw that Professor Valero had no reviews on the website, I had to put in 2¢ (no relation to procrastinating on an essay whatsoever). Anyway, Mario (as he insisted we all call him) is great. Suuuuuuuper nice, very clear, and very understanding. Oh, and an adorable Prada briefcase, natch. Take any Spanish class you can from him. People who know him transfer into his classes when they have the chance--it's worth it.

May 2002

Professor Tuts was a truly phenomenal teacher. He is extremely knowledgeable and what is even more rare among science professors, is able to effectively communicate the information to the class. His lectures are clear and thorough, and though you may not be smiling after his tests, you will certainly leave the class with a solid understanding of the material. Unless you aced the AP, go to class, and recitation's not a bad idea either.

Jan 2002

Tuts is a real phenom for the Physics department. He's a full professor who really cares about an entry level class. His love for physics really shows in the lectures, although it often lead to some lengthy descriptions that went into minute detail. Great use of examples and extremely accessible outside of class... wish I could say the same for the T.A.s.

Dec 2001

Professor Tuts did a great job of presenting the material in a coherent and approachable fashion. The lectures were interesting; on the whole, this class smacks of none of the pre-med insidiousness that I've come to expect from intro-level science classes.

Jan 2000

I don't know a single student who enjoyed this class. Sciulli has a knack for making an unbearable subject like physics even more unbearable. His lectures are dull as stone. The highlight of the year is at the very beginning when he shoots down a falling stuffed monkey to demonstrate projectile motion - it's all downhill from there. He has no enthusiasm for teaching and this reflects in the rapidly diminishing attendance for the class. Expect to never have to fight for a seat.