Profesor Zaets is low key super funny and caring about her students' success and understanding. She's tough for sure and wants you to put in time and effort, but overall I thought she was great. This class is super helpful for Investment Banking interviews and thinking, and I'm happy I took it overall (even though it wasn't a requirement for me). I'd recommend if you have space!
Professor Webster made it possible to stay awake for a long Friday morning class. He has a sense of humor and teaches the material in a completely straightforward manner. He could answer any question thrown at him and anything covered on the exam was made clear in class. Although he initially rubbed me the wrong way with his controversial jokes, he eventually won over most of the class (it seemed) by just teaching us what we needed to know. We covered a ton of material in this class, from all of the most important financial statements to ratio analysis, and his materials made it possible to go into the exam with confidence (and impress an interviewer or two).
I really like Webster: he's a great lecturer and person overall. He's very clear and extremely open to questions. My only real complaint is the textbook. He makes you buy these pdf textbooks that he has made himself. They're awful. The outline often don't match lectures (as I realized only after the first midterm...), so you should go to lecture to find out what they SHOULD say. The material itself is really easy, so I thought I didn't have to go to class. Wrong. Webster is a better lecturer than he is a writer. Go to class. He clearly outlines what he thinks you should know (which excludes a surprising portion of his own textbook sometimes) and explains it better than he does in the textbook. He will actually discount his own textbook and say "this is the easier way to think about it." Webster is the best resource in this class. So just show up to 8:40 lecture. It's worth it.
Webster overall is a great professor. His classbook is clear (no need to buy anything other than that). He is a nice guy, and you learn the basics of accounting. I personally really enjoyed the class, and the examples he uses are interesting. It is kind of important to get the answers to the example problems he gives. The class average is super high, and it feels like a lot of calculator work at times on the exams. Cheatsheets of one page, both sides, are allowed. It seems like the key to doing well in the class is not making stupid mistakes. Webster is fairly generous with A+s, with 11% of my 106 person class ending up with an A+. ~22% As ~7% A-s no B+s 23% B's 17% B-'s ~14% C's Extra credit is supposedly not actually extra credit. It's supposed to help bump you up a grade or something. Not exactly sure...
This class basically covers two parts, Accounting and Finance. In the first six weeks or so, we learnt accounting and preparing the four kinds of accounting statements. In the rest of the semester, we covered finance, including ratio analysis, risk etc. The class was probably the best class I've taken at Columbia so far. Webster is a great lecturer, and truly wants to ensure that everyone understands the material. We go over real world examples in class, and the tests are very similar to the in-class examples. Webster also tries to keep the class entertaining as far as possible, and is always open to answering questions. [See his quotes] Also, worth noting that the final is non cumulative, and cheat sheets are allowed to every test.
This class is required for IEOR students, but all students who are interested in Finance and want to learn more should take this class. As the previous poster said, Webster really tries to make sure that every student understands the material. He also truly wants to make sure that everyone does well and has a good grade, even going so far as to inquire what the curve is in other engineering classes. Webster comes from an engineering background himself and has an MBA from Columbia Business School. He also has experience writing on and using the materials and methods he teaches. He intertwines the research he conducts at his asset management firm with the material in class; balance sheets and financial ratio analysis are taken from real companies he researched and invested in. At the height of the credit crunch in September 2008, Webster would often take entire lectures to go over certain aspects of the financial crisis, including securitization as well as risk aversion to lending. These proved very insightful and interesting, for the students who could make it to his 9:10 class. This was the most interesting and insightful class that I have taken at Columbia thus far. The material is not difficult and Webster is not out to trick you on the tests. However, the class does move very quickly through the material. Before you know it, you will have learned the basics of generating the 4 types of financial statements. And remember, the balance sheet is a snapshot of a business at one time on a particular day/hour/minute. Income statements, cash flow statements, and statements of owner's equity are flow statements that capture the change in a business in a given period of time, usually a quarter.
Webster is such a sweet man. He genuinely wants everyone to understand accounting and do well in the class. He's really good at explaining things, and teaches you what you need to know. I also loved how he related everything to current events on wall street. it made the class so much better and interesting. So glad I took it with him, and not with the previous teacher of this class! The only thing I felt bad about is that it was obvious he made the final easy as possible to make everyone feel better after the second midterm, which wasn't even hard...everyone kind of complained way too much to him about the second midterm which wasn't even THAT bad!
I agree with the previous reviews. She's a very boring professor. You don't need to go to class at all as long as you do read the texts. The amount of workload is insane at times - towards the end of the semester she tried to rush through stuff, so you ended up having to read 2-3 chapters a week. At first, I thought I would pass/fail this class, but considering the HUGE amount of time I had to spend on it just to pass the class, I decided to do it for a letter grade. The TA's are great and very helpful. The professor doesn't seem to care much about her students; she didn't respond to my emails. I had to see her in person if I had questions about grading or the term project. I didn't like this at all because I felt like I spent so much time on her class and really tried to do well, and the least she could do is just pretend to care about her students! Though I didn't learn that much from HER, I did learn A LOT from the TA's, and from reading the texts. So over all, I did not regret taking this class.
i dunno what other people are talking about, but this class is pretty easy. doesn't take a lot of deep understanding or knowledge to do well in this class. difficulty wise, this was the easiest class i've taken at columbia. if you read the text before you come to class, everything in the lecture makes sense, and the midterm and final are easy. people are complaining because financial vocab that she used in class was somewhat unwieldy, and people couldn't understand it. Besides this, the midterm and final were all multiple choice or very short answer questions. There's an initial 10 point curve built into class. There are 10-20 point curves built into the midterm and final i.e. 116 questions, need only to get 100 right to get 100%. she actually had to curve down because of all of the A+'s that were obtained, probably from the people who went to class. seriously, if you read and attend class, this will be one of the easiest classes you'll take. midterm and final, no thinking required.
Professor Eckstein is a very nice woman, but you should avoid this class. I don't think anyone in the class benefited from her lectures. If you did the staggering amount of textbook reading (more than any class I've had at Columbia), then you could do well in the class. The lectures often made the material more confusing. If you are looking for a class where you can get away without going to class and are willing to spend an inordinate amount of time doing textbook reading, then this class is for you (I think the class has a normal curve). However, if you're at Columbia because you want the benefit of having great professors with great lectures, then avoid this class at all costs.
Eccstein is a new teacher who came to Columbia in fall 2007 as a guest lecturer. Her classes are extremely boring and the stuff she teaches seem to be unbelievably unrelated to midterm or quizzes. I did okay in this class, but went to class on quiz and midterm days, or just to hand in my homework. If you read the text carefully and take good notes, you will learn a lot about accounting and finance. for good grades, you really dont have to go to the lectures, i would rather go to butler and read the text alone. TA review sessions are very helpful though. Go to the ones with female TAs, they actually prepare some stuff to teach, while male TAs just come to the TA session and chill. I heard Claire Ecstein has been teaching for almost twenty years, but I never felt that she really knows the stuff, or she is a great teacher. She also seems to be very proud of her title as CPA, certified public accountant, but if she is a CPA, I could probably take the test and be one too.... You really do not learn anything from her unless you study by yourself!! Oh, and also, the term project....its useless and crappy. I heard some people used like twenty articles or as many as possible... haha I did like three articles and still got a good grade on the final, so its about the quality, not quantity.
This class was a horrible experience. She is a terrible lecturer; she's boring, mumbles, and cannot teach the material in an affective way. She assumes you understand concepts and when she is asked to explain in more detail, she gets upset and (almost) yells her explanation which is pretty much the same thing she has already said. Going to class is a waste of time and it is safe to say probably 3/4 of the class never showed up. You learn more from the textbooks than her. She even started giving quizzes in an attempt to get the students back in the classroom. The class was EXTREMELY unorganized. She gave us a list of the chapters but no dates. She would give us homework with very short notice. She even assigned homework on Thanksgiving Day that was due the Monday we got back. Oh, and the way she communicated to the class was through the Courseworks announcements section which was very inconvenient. And the way she worded everything was confusing. Not to mention her annoying use of footnotes. The TAs were very helpful, with the exception of Stephan. He was just as bad as her. If you take this class, definitely go to the TA recitations. They are required and you get a point for attending. The thing that ticked me off the most was her constant interruptions and distractions during quizzes and exams. She would confuse us about time constraints sending some people into a panic. And there was definitely some heckling during the midterm. Not a good test-taking atmosphere. The only good thing about the class was she never used the whole hour and 50 minutes of class time. I do not recommend this course if Eckstein is the professor.
LeGuyader is an interesting professor. You can easily tell that he loves to teach... His passion, however, is greatly outweighed by his inability to convey concepts in a clear, concise, and understandable manner. Or perhaps I should rephrase - he is unable to explain elementary and fundamental concepts to people who actually need an introduction to accounting and finance. There were people in the class who already knew finance and they seemed to get a great deal out of his course - after all, he is a hotshot veteran investment banker who kicks total ass in his business (no cynicism intended). He definitely knows what he's talking about both theoretically and practically. So if you understand finance to begin with, you'll learn a lot and the course will be easy throughout. Otherwise you will toil through his lectures and come to find on review day with the TAs (who are good) that what you've been studying and trying to understand all this time is not at all what's going to be on the tests. You'll most likely have to work hard throughout the course unless you're good at theoretical math (easy - no calculus), as in understanding the background behind how financial concepts function in math. I greatly appreciated his passion though. If you make an effort, you'll probably end up with a respectable foundation of finance. I would recommend him if you're willing to study for it.
This is the boring prof. All you do is sit and listen to him read his slides, word for word. FUN. I went to Guyader's class one time and thought he was much more interesting. Still, Zhang's class is well structured and you're never caught off guard. Only 22% of the class got A and above, so be prepared to work for that grade. Overall, I didn't find it harder about the same level of difficulty as my 1400 physics and Calc III classes, so don't worry about seeing tons of people over 30. Ok easiest way to do well: Go to TA's office hours. This is very important point. I could not have done nearly as well on the final without Enrico's review. I heard they also help a lot on hws. Read the text book. His quizes are sneaky in that they really aren't based on his lectures. You have to read the book and read every detail. Especially what was not covered in class. Don't mess up the term project. Just don't ok? Start it early. Lastly, I recommend everyone taking this class to participate in class everyday. He gives 5 bonus points for participation and those 5 points are HUGE. They definitely mean the difference between a letter grade.
Lou is obviously a brilliant professor. Further, he is incredibly nice. The only problem is that his teaching style is quite boring, although the subject matter (Accounting and Finance) probably has a lot to with it. The class is two hours long from 8-10pm without a break, and it can get very, very boring. Otherwise, Lou is a really great guy. His tests seem to be pretty fair, and he is a fair grader. His problem sets tend to be VERY long however, sometimes taking upwards of 5 or 6 hours to complete. Luckily, they are only graded on a pass/fail basis. Just know what you are getting into before you take this class.
Prof Guyader's a pretty nice guy overall. I didn't really go to a lot of lectures near the end of the semester because he really only talks about actual material in the textbook for about 30 minutes out of the 2 hours. The rest of the time he just tells stories related to accounting. Recitations and the book pretty much taught me everything in that class and I didn't do too bad. Accounting's not ridiculously difficult or anything; it just gets boring really quickly. I'd recommend taking him though.. he does tend to keep you somewhat entertained during lecture
Yu Zhang is a nice man and a fair grader, but definitely not an easy A professor, nor an interesting lecturer. Unless there's a quiz, don't bother to show up because you won't miss much- everything is posted on the slide. He covers a lot compared to the other intro courses, as we covered not only the basic materials but futures, forwards, options, swaps, and even debt policy. He is by no means easy, but if you spend a lot of time on it you should be able to get an A- without too much difficulty.
Sometimes hard to understand. Has extremely small handwriting on the board so it's usually hard to see. Mandatory attendance (it's part of your grade). Doesn't entertain stupid questions, which btw you will have since you're not going to keep up with what he's saying. It seemed better than the other class (Yu Zhang) since I could understand Hany more. Maybe it wasn't. Goes over problems in the textbook. Don't expect much.
Yu's class was really chill. Yu is a great guy and he even makes an effort to get to know his students. If you do the work, it is not hard to get an A or even an A+. All of his lectures are posted on Courseworks right before class. If the lecture looks shorter than the usual 45 slides, you will probably be quizzed that day. He tells the class in the beginning whether or not they will be quizzed and administers them an hour and a half later (giving me some necessary study time.) His quizzes are a very straitforward 20 questions long and he has so far quizzed us on every topic we have covered because he fundamentally wants us to learn the material. His midterm was really long- so long that he curved it 25 points but the questions were fair. All in all, the class is nothing to worry about. I found recitation helpful though the answers to recitation problems are also posted onlne. In truth, if not for the pop quizzes, a majority of the class would never show up. The class is strait from the textbook and the lecture notes are quite a good summary for the textbook and do not introduce new material.
Horrible class! Two hours twice a week 8-10 pm is insane! Its dry and long. Amir repeats too much and has annoying nuances to his lecturing style whihc take time to get used to. The class does not need to be that long. The other problem with the class is that it isnt based on real-life examples enough to solifify the knowledge in your mind. I wish we worked more with financial statements etc. or the actual stock market to truly understand finance and how accoutning in applied in the real world. He is really helpful though if you have any problems. Just speak to him. Mid term was hard. Final was a bit easier. Many people pass/fail the class
The course is divided into two parts: Accounting and Finance. We spent too much time on the Accounting part that we didn't cover enough Finance. But the course is still demanding nevertheless. I strongly suggest that you get the solutions manual to both textbooks. They'll help immensely. But the questions he uses on the exams aren't always similar to the problems found in the texts. The accounting part of the course is fairly easy and you should do rather well if you do all the problems. The finance part is more challenging and I suggest going to class for those topics. Definitely keep up with the work. His lectures sometimes seem theoretical and lacking in relevance. Also he spends a large part of the two hour class slowly going over problems in the texts. And I mean slowly. Not everyone went to class and you might still get a decent grade if you didn't go either. Going to recitations can be helpful too, but remember the questions may not be the same on the exams. We only had one Homework assignment, but 5 quizes. Pay attention to information he sends you through e-mail because they'll most likely show up on exams. Good Luck.
Rozen is a prof who oversimplifies the material. Although he is good at making the material understandable for all students, I felt he often spent way too much time trying to explain concepts that were themselves pretty simple. This made the lectures pointless to go to unless there was a quiz that day. Because his lectures seemed to be geared for junior high/high school students, the material he covers in the 2 hours can be covered in less than 30 minutes at a reasonable pace by a regular lecturer. Finally, his final grading scheme didn't seem very understandable. Although he initially had weights for each exam, homeworks, quizzes, etc., it didn't appear like the weights were actually followed when the final grade was given. I would suggest another prof if you actually want to learn something from the class and have your grade decided by a schema that is more elaborate than him eyeballing your final scores.
I agree with the last review. You definitely have to work (hard too) for this class if you want a decent grade. Maedler is very knowledgeable - that is true. But that doesnt mean that you'd get an A or anywhere near that by studying for just an hour or two before the exams, unless of course, you;re a super genius. But i sure wasnt, and many people i know werent. so, if you want a good grade, and also learn something in this, you'd have to put the time and effort into it.
I wouldn't recommend this class if it isn't required. I do not agree with what the last review said. This class requires more than attending lectures: it requires a lot of studying and hard work if you want at least an A-. The midterm and final are not easy and the only way to prepare is by studying a lot, since together they make up the majority of your final grade. Markus is very knowledgable and willing to help but that also means that you need to apply yourself to get the grade you want.
It is a long class (almost two hours twice a week) and Markus isn't exactly a great lecturer or teacher. He had a lot of microphone problems, but if you sit up front, it's not a big issue. His accent makes him hard to understand, but it's bearable. However, he is a nice guy and he will try to answer any questions you have. The material is a bit condensed. Accounting is a very detailed process, but if you go to class, you don't really need to read the book. Don't try to memorize everything, but make sense of how things fit together. The exam is not too hard if you understand the concepts. Most of the finance topics covered are very easy if you have a good grip of basic math. You can get majority of the points on the finance exam only knowing how to calculate present value. Contrary to the previous review, I had no previous background and I got an A+; No, I did not study intensively; I reviewed for the exam for an hour or two at most. The material is very manageable if you put in a little effort.
This guy is actually a really good lecturer. He presentations are clear, and he he adds his own perspective to the powerpoint, and to the presentation he gives in class. You can actually miss class, but he tends to give pop quizzes, although, they are usually when hw is due, so be careful. I always had a friend on the lookout, who called me when she thought there would be a quiz. the hw is out of the book, and his midterms are simple if you know the material. This semester he had to cancel class several times, not intentionally, but because, for some reason, it was just not his semester. I have to say this hurt the students. In the end, he gave the option of students who did better on the first midterm to count for 70% of the grade, because he covered such little material for the finance section of the cours.e In other words, the grade of the final didn't count. This hurt me, and i'm sure some other people who did better in the second half than the first. And he refused to hear out the students who were against this. He even suggested there be extra classes during the study period to cover for his absences. It wasn't his fault that he cancelled classes, but I think it hurt the students. Overall, though it is a great class. One should take it if you have three credits and 2 hrs a night for two nights out of the week. I feel he explains the material well, and answers all questions. If time is crunched during class, his office hours are after class, although it's late, he will seriously stay there until your question has been answered to your satisfaction. My only advice is to seriously do your work, because there were a lot of wanna be i-bankers who were fiercely competitive, and shockingly ahead, which can ruin the curve. His average was a B, so just work hard.
Markus is a very nice man. Though, he is very professional (German work ethic?) and strict with his teachings. He gives "pop quizzes" 6-8 times during the semester which counts toward 10% of your grade. Lectures are useless as he is very difficult to understand. He has a thick accent, speaks very softly, often refuses to use the microphone, and makes things seem so much more complicated than they really are. Instead of picking simple examples to illustrate concepts, he goes over long drawn-out special cases when the majority of the class has no idea what he's doing. The midterm and final are very hard, and very difficult to study for. I did well in this class (A-), but only because I have an extensive background in accounting / financial concepts. I think the rest of the class was at a tremendous loss. As a professor, he is on the poor side of average. Try to avoid him if you can, but if you can't, you'll be fine if you don't mind teaching yourself ALL the concepts in great detail.
Sen Dong is very organized and reliable, keeping all his lectures on meticulous power points. He seems to know the subject quite well. I still get the feeling that he made the class harder than it needed to be, probably because his lecturing is not very engaging, and at worst can be confusing. I found myself having to learn/re-learn a lot from the textbook. One amusing thing was his constant mispronounciation of words, placing the emphasis on the wrong syllables of words like "inVENTory". All these challenges aside, it's a fairly easy class and if you have an interest in learning the subject it's worth taking. Just don't expect the world from the teacher.
This may be a horrible class, but this is a wonderful professor. In a class of well over 100 people he would try to make sure each and every person understood. If you didn't, it was your fault for not asking a question. His homework grading is mostly completion (since he recommends the solution manual as well). The material is pretty crappy though. Not his fault. If you can avoid taking this class - by all means! But do not avoid taking this professor by any means!
his class was fairly challenging at the beginning, because accounting was probably new to many of us. he is a very very funny lecturer and you will always be able to remain attentive in his class. he also brings in a lot of jokes, news and insider stories about the wall street, i hated finance, but after taking this class, i fell in love with finance....the test are easy if u work hard, the grading is fair, i dunno about the curve, but the mean is usually aboves 80s
Want a lecturer who makes an effort to know each student personally in a large lecture class? If so, this lecturer is for you! Markus cares greatly about his students and their understanding of the material. He has biweekly quizzes that test the material currently being covered; if he sees a pattern in gaps in understanding, he'll go over the material again. Markus is very comprehensive in covering the material, which is bad if you're looking to take this class as an easy A, as many students do. You'll find that although you are working much harder than the other section (Markus never lets students out early and goes over materials again and again until he is confident everyone understands it), you'll learn much more. Possible downsides...Although A&F typically covers accounting in the first half and finance in the second, Markus specializes in accounting and likes to bring accounting into finance by telling students to use T-accounts and journal entries. He also doesn't always explain things in the least complicated way possible.
Not the best lecturer as he's still a bit green -- he's a grad student. He knows the material well enough and prepares powerpoint presentation with accompanying handouts. 90% of what you need to know is in the handouts and the other 10% comes from a few maneuverings he demonstrates on the board. The class is not a difficult one for those who have some experience with economics and simple business principles. There is a level of intuition assumed I think as it is an econ elective - thus, for those french majors who decided they wanted to become investment bankers their senior fall the class may take a bit of getting used to + a bit of extra work. That said, the workload for this class is nothing compared to other econ courses and he grades very generously. The class is overall reasonably interesting and you definitely get a decent introduction to both accounting and finance.
I am not an econ major, so this review may be skewed. However, I found this class challenging enough to take it pass/fail. Some may find the class laughably easy, but without any real world experience in the subject matter, the concepts can be really confusing and meaningless. The class is also 2 hours long, but Jay let us out a half hour early. Jay is a young, funny, nice guy with lots of helpful advice, but alas, he is not a good lecturer. He just never explained anything in a way that I could understand- even really simple stuff. Of course, not having a clear explanation of anything made the class that much harder. Overall, the class is practical but really boring. Unless you are thinking about careers that marginally or majorly use accounting and finance, don't take this class.
amir is great if you don't like going to class b/c he puts his lectures up online. honestly, this stuff is easy - if you have half a brain, you'll be able to learn the required chapters in less than a week. but, since we spend an entire semester, amir gives pop quizes (like 5 of them) scattered throughout the 3 months... all you gotta do is figure out when the quizes are and study for 15 minutes on 3 chapters right before the quiz. and you're set. at first, amir was a pretty terrible lecturer, but i think he got better towards the end of the year. the class is huge, so he doesn't like to take questions, and to be honest, some of the questions asked by our fellow peers are so dumb. it'd help if he were more approachable by students about the company analysis project, but he's a young arrogant banker from smith barney. he doesn't hurt if you don't bother getting to know him and study your stuff. since the class was big and there's some crazy ibanker-wannabes out there, do all your work (psets, quizes, proj, tests) well and you should be okay. if you want to dispute a grade, he won't listen to you...
Amir Rosen is the worst teacher i have ever had. He takes 2 hours (literally) what it would take me 10 minutes to learn on my own. A good teacher could teach the entire content of this class in about 2 weeks. Worse, his class is 1 hour and 50 minutes. I really think that they added the extra 35 minutes because Amir cant teach. avoid him at all costs. trust me you dont want to listen to him for this long. The content of this class is pretty important, so take it...just NOT with him.
Some kid asked a question in class, he responded, "please don't ask me any questions after we've moved on to the next problem" dude...it takes time to absorb the information and he was going wickedly fast. every class that i've gone to i've heard him scream at the kids sitting in the front. This guy tests on NOTHING he shows you in class. His sample problems in class are easy and his midterm problems are killer. and he curves to like a b-/b. I heard the other class was ridiculously easy. i learned jack from him anyway, why torture yourself and pretend like you're learning something...go with the easier prof...which is just about anyone else in the department. the final rocked everyone like nothing else. 25 multiple choice questions with at least like 4-5 concepts embedded in each. you can understand and be able to answer part of the question, but if you mess up the rest of it, NO partial credit. so it's all or nothing. evil i say!
This is the most practical course that econ majors can take if they're looking for a career in finance. This professor will also leave a good impression of the subject so as not to change your mind about the field. The professor is very thorough in his lectures, which are all available in powerpoint presentations. The two projects are also pretty interesting. In the end, if you do your work, you're guaranteed an A.
I thought Amir was such a fabulous teacher that I'm still considering going to Susan Elmes, as the department head, and suggesting that his class be video-taped for the benefit of those professors who may be geniuses in their field but who, if they took it into their heads to describe the workings of a doorknob, would insure that at least half of the adult population would never be able to get through a door again (just about sums up the econ. department for me). His lectures were not only clear, he not only kept up class participation in a way I would have thought almost impossible for a class with about 150 people, but he is just a plain good lecturer. He has a real "public-speaking style" that actually acknowledges that he has an audience to keep interested. If you hate it then I guess your in trouble but I really appreciated it. He speaks well, clearly, loudly enough and with as much humor as can be wrought out of accounting. His lectures are well-organized powerpoint presentations and there are no surprises or long, wandering deviations. He repeats information; not in an annoying but in a truly helpful "I want to make sure you're all clear on this" sort of way. As to minding the "Clear? Questions?" I can only say that in many of many of my classes the level of lostness on the part of the students is palpable above the silence and their refusal to ask the professor what on earth s/he just meant, no matter how obscure the professor may have been. But people felt more comfortable asking questions in Amir's class than just about any class I've taken. He really wants to know where his students stand (once he has asked a question he will not continue until he has gotten an answer and if the class seems particularly recticent will cover the material again). And on top of it all, a fun accent. I mean it, he's a good guy and a conscientious professor.
A wonderful teacher who truly cares whether you understand the material or not. While this may frustrate the quicker members of the class, I was heartened to see how he never failed to explain things thoroughly to those who didn't grasp the concepts immediately (this is an INTRO class after all--and if you already know all the things he's teaching, why are you taking this class anyway?). A young, flexible guy, he was quick to adapt his teaching to the general level of the class after gauging our receptiveness and comprehension. He was readily available outside of class too, and knows many of his students by name. His self-deprecating sense of humor made a class held this late actually enjoyable. Take this class especially if you've feared even the tiniest bit of math like the bogeyman--you'll get a nice introduction to the world of finance and get over your irrational phobia of numbers. His natural enthuasiasm and curiosity for his subject shines through, and makes you wonder: Why can't all lecturers be this witty and engaged?
Amazingly boring professor, but hey its accounting what do you expect. He can't stop saying things twice, its so annoying it will make you not go to class. Extremely frugal on grades, doesn't give a crap about anyone or anything but his own personal time. *CULPA censor*
This class is great if you do not like to go to the lectures. Amir posts the notes in .pdf format on Courseworks, and the book covers all of the material needed for exams, problem sets, and the projects. However, you should go to class on the day the projects are explained. We just got our final grades (fall 2003), and he gave the mean a B+. Overall: Fairly easy class compared to others at Columbia, especially great if you do not like to attend lectures and would just rather learn from the texts. NOTE: The texts for this class are expensive. I think each book is around $120 new (2 books required); however, the business school library has tons on reserve.
I feel obligated to post this review since the previous reviews were so positive. I am writing this review before taking the final, so I dont know my grade, but am expecting to get an A. so there is no ulterior motive for my review. I found this man terribly annoying. His lecturing style was choppy and erratic. He often mispronounced words without clarification and glossed over more difficult concepts and problems because he realized that his explanations were not correct. I really got the feeling that he was in class not for the students, but to hear himself talk. I mean, the guy was able to get the general material across, and its not very hard to get an A, but hes just so annoying! After every slide he finishes with "clear . . . questions . . . ok." In one on one interaction, he was very arrogant and condescending. I mean the class is pretty easy but hes just like nails on a chalkboard. For the first half of the semester, when we deal with accounting, he pronounced "retained earnings" as "returned earnings". So while this class is pretty easy, and the book teaches you a lot, Amir Rozen makes the lecture experiences painful. My own personal opinion, but had I met this guy before taking the class, I would have taken the other section.
Excellent teacher. Works with you until you understand the material and never tries to trick you. Very understanding, let us out early a few times since the class is late. Also makes funny jokes. Overall, a wonderful experience
Mesznik rocks! This guy is totally awesome. His lectures were fun, informative, and never boring. He calls on people to keep things interesting and is always nice and encouraging to them. He wants you to be able to understand and apply this material and uses his lectures/questions to help you make the connections. His jokes are hilarious. If the class does well he'll give you the choice to accept your grade without taking the final! One of the best professors I've had.
Rozen does a fine job with the material. He presents it in a very oganized way and gives good examples. He does everything he can to help students understand it: .PDF files with the lecture notes, old midterms and finals with solutions, and review sessions for the midterm and final. The material can be challenging but he does a good job. His final was a bit tricky
Stav presents the basic material in his lectures while expecting a much deeper understanding for the exams. His explanations lack clairty and the TAs are even worse. I do not recommend this class.
The lectures are pretty boring and the accounting part of the course is the most boring but pretty easy. The midterm is really really difficult ...if you get a C..don't worry, he curves the grades (but he doesn't tell the class that he does so you actually end up thinking that you got a C when it's really a B+). Even if you get a C it;s soo easy to get an A in the class if you do the work. FInal is 25 multiple choice so you have to be careful. Overall, good class...I learned a lot but it's also a whole lotta work!
Stav tries hard with incredibly boring material. He encourages students to make presentations for extra credit on current accounting issues, and he brings in articles from the Wall Street Journal and New York Times on accounting problems in corporate America. He is, almost unbelievably, actually interested in accounting - you can tell when he breaks into a wide grin at the mention of accounting principles. Nonetheless, I can't recommend this course to anyone who does not HAVE to take it. Accounting is mind-boggling boring. You will end up sitting with your friends joking about Stav and working crossword puzzles in class.
I'm taking this class currently in Fall 2002. He's an excellent teacher and really cares about teaching his students well. He's always available for students to meet with him and there are two TAs available as well (although they're not very helpful.) He's a great teacher for this course because he realizes how boring accounting can be (he worked as a financial analyst in Wall Street) and tries to make it as interesting as possible.