Apr 2005

Prof. Avila is a great person, and will do whatever he can to help you when you ask for it. He wants you to participate and ask him questions. he wants you to stop him when you don't get something. He wants you to be engaged. Read the book and try to stay on top of the assignments - its easy to put it aside since the class is only pass/fail. But if you keep up with the reading and homework, the lectures are a lot easier to swallow. If you fall behind, they can seem a bit incomprehensible. So do yourself a favor and keep up. Also, since the idea is to take this class to understand and be prepared for Chem I, look at other texts. You may find that some book at Barnes and Noble clarifies something you didn't understand in your regular textbook. Grades are curved easier than they are in Chem I and II. But in the end, you aren't graded anyway. He provides a mock test before exams that you can take home and prepare with. This teacher has a huge heart and truly wants to inspire excitement about chemistry. He moves quickly in lecture, so it may seem that you aren't expected to ask questions, but you are. He really cares about his students. But he doesn't move slowly---you have to stay alert and keep up. Lectures are mostly on powerpoint. He offers demonstrations that are relevant to lecture, and are pretty neat. He makes chemistry less intimidating to those of us who never took it before.