course
Introduction to Microeconomics

Jan 2009

Excellent teacher. Her lectures are extremely clear and straightforward, and consequently you'll never really need to read the book. Go to class and be prepared for a tough midterm with a slightly easier final. The weekly problem sets are very long, but it helps that you are allowed turn them in, in groups of three. Studying the problem sets will help immensely on the Midterm/Final, as the topics and problem types covered, are often similar.

Sep 2008

Lalith is a weird guy. Goes off on a ton of tangents and you really have to read the book because he is useless in class. One on one he is a good guy. Hard final, I got a B in his class but felt the grading was fair.

Mar 2008

I don't know how she got this job, and it baffles me even more that she has been able to keep it. I don't know if it is because of her language or cultural barrier, but she acts/appears/grades/speaks like she is mentally challenged. I feel so bad for the professor (Sonia Pereira -absolute DOLL!) who has to constinually fix all of her grading errors and calm down the furious & frustrated students. Her only saving grace is the professor who actually teaches the class.

Dec 2007

Sonia is very nice, but she sometimes does have trouble answering questions. Overall, I found her to be helpful. She was much more responsive than the TA and more understanding. I went to her office hours a few times and thought they were useful. The class is not hard, but the lectures can be tedious. Sitting through powerpoint slides in the dark is never fun. But she does try to engage the students which not enough professors do. I would take a class with her again and she is not as horrible as some of these reviews make her out to be.

Oct 2007

What did I do in a past life to deserve this TA twice???? She not only makes grading mistakes on problem sets and is terrible at running a recitation, she is also pretty much crazy. I was afraid to bring up her obvious grading mistakes because I did not want to push her over the edge and cause a nervous breakdown. If you have her, all I can say is sorry, and do not go to her office hours alone, you never know when she might snap.

Oct 2007

I read her reviews on culpa before arriving on campus my freshman year (last year) and thought, she can't be that bad... Well, she can. My experience with Pereira taught me to always trust in culpa (except Dalton deserves a gold nugget!) -- she the worst teacher I've had here. Granted, I have based all my class choices since on culpa reviews (only choosing teachers with a shadowy gold nugget or higher), but she was even worse than high school teachers! I must warn you that I rarely read the book and have little interest in the subject, I took it to try out the subject. Her lectures were straight out of the book, and if you want to understand the material I recommend you just stick with the book and skip the class. I didn't want to do the reading and so I hoped that I would absorb the material in class through osmosis while doing other homework. I ended up with a B+, although with a little more effort I probably could've gotten an A.

Dec 2006

Some professors are very sweet and nice but just cannot teach..Sonia is one of them. She cannot answer you questions in class, so don't ask her because u'll get her even more confused! she'll say she cannot answer ur question at the time and will email u the answers to ur question. She posts all the slides on courseworks after the class is done (but in the middle of the semster, she posts them b4 class.) But many ppl who did not come to class did well just reading the text book and the slides. Her lectures are extremely boring and tedious and most ppl just fall asleep anyway. her exams are long but not too hard..also with very generous cures. she always gives review materials the class b4 the exam and forgets to put some info there...HW set and exams take extremely long to be graded because there's only on TA.

Dec 2006

Don't do this to yourself. I think this woman has no idea what she is doing, and that is me being kind. When students asked questions, she would have no idea how to answer them and change the subject. She takes over two weeks to grade homework and takes forever with tests. first midterm took three weeks to grade, second midterm took over a month. we only got them back two days before the final. her slides for class are posted online and are word for word transcripts from the textbook, which is actually a pretty good one. I only went to class five or six times and did fine just reading the textbook. She doesn't even care enough to show up to her own class on time. She is one of the best examples of the assertion that columbia professors are experts in their fields, but a lot of the time have no clue how to teach a class. Take this class with a different professor.

May 2006

Randall is a great professor. He is far superior to Colacelli, who almost killed my desire to learn economics. But Randall tried really hard every single class to try and make us love economics, and see how it was in every part of our lives. He would bring in short articles about current events having to do with econ--some in our backyard of harlem! He got better as the course went on I think, and he tried to crack jokes a couple times a class. As long as you can accept the fact that he is a huge econ-nerd (which is okay, because he makes it so adorable) then you will enjoy this class. The workload is far from demanding, and the two midterms weren't so bad (the second one was much harder, but his curves are pretty good so you can still do well in the class if you don't do so well on the midterms). My advice: do all of the problem sets, and do the extra credit he offers. I was able to get a 100.1% homework average, and that really helped my grade. I never skipped his class, and since most of the micro topics he does after the 2nd midterm aren't in the book, I recommend you go to those especially. Also, he is really helpful: if you like a certain micro topic he will let you know what class to take to pursue that. Even if you aren't planning to major in econ, take this course because it's not demanding, not too challenging (as long as you have some grasp of economics), and overall just an enjoyable class. Although he won't be here in 06-07 I am definitely planning on taking a course with him in 07-08!

Nov 2005

Hands down the worst class I have ever taken at this university. Yes- Reback does manage to spend lectures making the simplest concepts confusing and skimming over things that could use some real explanation. You wont learn much from his lectures except that he really loves using M&Ms and snicker bars as examples. The problem sets are from the book and offline, so they in no way reflect what he thinks is important in the class- which of course means that you are not prepared for his exams. This class definitely killed my interest in economics. With so many great econ professors in this university theres no reason to waste time with Reback.

Aug 2005

Professor Rebeck was not a bad teacher. Granted the class wasn't always interesting and it was sometimes difficult to get to it, he did a good job of trying to assign interesting articles to read and discuss in class. It wasn't too hard, and the workload was definitely manageable.

Jun 2005

Let's just start off by saying this is a nice guy with good intentions in mind. However, he does not fully live up to what one would expect from a good economics professor. At times he overcomplicates the simple stuff, while other times he makes some concepts overly simplistic. How many professors on the college level spends a good amount of class time polling the class on how many slices of pizza they would buy?? His tests are fairly difficult, which in other cases I would not mind; however, his teaching does not prepare you for these exams. If you are capable of teaching yourself the material from the textbook, then his class would not be as bad. But if you are not, have fun....you will have more difficulty grasping the stuff. He fails to present the material in an interesting manner, which could possibly make the subject come off as boring to many people. He eventually takes note of this and kinda attempts to make the class more interesting by talking about the Jets stadium, making us read articles where economics applies to real life, etc. etc. All in all, I am sure this prof. knows his stuff......he just has trouble conveying it in an effective way to the class.

May 2005

ugh...well, lets see. I took this class out of sheer personal interest in the subject, let me start there. The professor...overcomplicates the simple, gets tangled in his own thoughts...the classes are so simplified they are boring, occasionally confusing, often painful...the tests, on the otherhand, were fairly difficult, involving the outdated use of multiple choice and true/false questions...i mean, come on, ask a person to define a concept, fine. but true false? i enjoyed the subject matter to some degree, but felt that the overall experience was not as positive as i would like. definitely not an easy A, which is frustrating, because the material is not complex, and could be handled in a way that makes it accessible to the students....

Apr 2005

The good thing about Reback is that he is new and more concerned about teaching his students than sticking to a routine dry teaching style that some professors are too inflexible to change. This is an intro class and some topics are so simplified that it gets a little boring and the real interesting parts aren't taught until the last two weeks of the course. His tests are difficult but not impossible. I truly believe that he takes student's reviews and comments to heart and tries to adjust his teaching and tests so that the students will actually learn. I wouldn't recommend this class if you are looking for an easy A.

Feb 2005

He was excellent. Every lecture was informative, energetic, entertaining, and really genuinely funny. I adored Lalith. He really cares about relaying the material effectively and will get you excited about econ, even tho he facetiously calls it a boring subject. He likes to integrate psychology into discussions about economics and will go on really fun tangents. The problem sets are doable but not easy, and they don't really effect your grade too much. Midterm and Final are very straightforward because Lalith runs thorough review sessions and is very clear about what he wants to cover on tests. However, you will need to study because he is very thorough with material he covers, and the class will seem like it's moving quickly at times. This class was generally a great experience and I would take any other class that Lalith teaches.

Jan 2005

If you want to find yourself up late at about 4:00 in the morning shouting aloud please go ahead and take this class. I hope you are a chick cause in my opinion Susan has an enormous chip on her shoulder. She must have been double crossed by an Australian guy named Bruce because he is the brunt of every economics example she can muster.

Jan 2005

This is a class for people who are genuinely interested in economics, and that is how Lalith presents it from day one. He is a very intelligent prof with a sarcastic sense of humor that certain people can find to be annoying, but I loved the guy. He can take such a dry, boring subject filled with graphs, charts and stats and make it apply in the real world - and i found his (phd dissertation?) paper on "Why Dancers Smoke?" to be extremely interesting. He is interested in going beyond the material and making it actually mean something to us beyond the numbers and facts. Being a first-year, I was worried what "lecture" classes really meant. But Lalith (and he insists that you call him by his first name) is a professor that blames himself and his own teaching style if a student doesn't understand the material - as opposed to other profs who blame the students. And so he really tries his best to present the material in a simplistic manner. I personally will take any other class Lalith offers.

Jan 2005

Solid lecturer. Much more approachable than he seems (I think the accent makes him come across tougher than he is). Hard problem sets that you need to have been in class to do. Midterm and final based on previous midterms and finals. Very generous curve at the end of the term. If you want to take miroecon, take it with him.

Aug 2004

The instructor although extremely bright and experienced suceeds only at in my opinion promoting his own ego at the expense of the economics newbies who are largely put off. This experience was so harrowing that I dropped the class and moved on.

May 2004

This guy is the pits! I cant say one good thing about this class. Lets just say that this is the first prof that I have ever had that made the final so ridiculously hard that the entire class failed, that decided not to curve it but make everyone take a second final two weeks later based on more material that was equally as hard that the avg was still a 70 or something. Yet still refused to curve! On top of all this anxiety you have to go through he is the worse lecturer. You better be a math genius to understand a damn thing. He is equally as unclear one on one. NOTE: He curves around a (B-/C+) So prepare yourself!

Dec 2003

Don't be fooled by the title; this is no intro class. Lalith announces on the first day of class that he will be teaching to an intermediate micro level, but what he really means is he is teaching only to those who want to pursue a major. If you do not plan to be an econ major, do not take this class! He is obviously and consistently bored during class; he constantly remarks how trivial the material is and gets frustrated when we do not immediately know an answer to one of his questions. While Lalith is a nice person, he has no patience for teaching an intro level course. I have had four semesters of calculus and still managed to get lost in the math he was teaching. Only take this course if you are definitely going to be a major, he will make you hate econ otherwise.

Sep 2003

Maybe it was because she had recently undergone some sort of hip surgery, but I found this to be one of the worst organized classes I ever took. Before each test she gives an excessive amount of review questions, but all test questions are pretty much taken straight from these lists, so it is an easy A if you put in the time and effort. Although this class isn't hard, it was deadly boring.

Sep 2003

Prof. Munasinghe is a pretty funny guy if you ask me. However, his lactures tend to be tough if you don't read any of the class notes he posts on courseworks (or read thetextbook). Don't take this class if you have never had any econ at all becuase it's not exactly easy. Prof. Munasinghe can explain all of the concepts, but you really have to do the math and know detailes from the notes.

Mar 2003

this was a pretty good class. i feel like i learned a lot. the professor was nice, although he was easily distracted by ringing cell phones. you didn't have to buy a textbook and he posted really great notes on courseworks. the course work was very manageable. i would recommend this class.

Mar 2003

people seemed to have mixed opinions about this class - personally i found that all i needed to do was go to class and i did pretty well. reading the book is basically optional because he posts lecture notes online. the final was definitely more difficult than either midterm, but still doable. also he's a considerate grader, and had several different weightings for the test to give each person their best possible average. i thought he made the material really easy to understand, but some people didn't get it at all. he's a pretty amusing guy who will stop and tell the class about the marvels of his new palm pilot. review session before every test, either by him or TA.