course
Calculus II

Apr 2021

Professor Dimitrov is impressively organized. All lectures, homework, and practice exams were posted to Courseworks in the first few weeks of the course. His teaching is great and the fundamentals are taught rather neatly. He's open to feedback and actually accepts many suggestions students give him. For instance, midway through the semester, he accepted a request to offer a second, alternative grading scheme dropping one midterm. I only have positive things to say about Calculus II with Dimitrov. I hope to have him again for other courses.

Dec 2020

Taking Calc II with Piechnik was a good experience for me. Piechnik put in extra effort to make us feel comfortable with the online format and still feel some semblance of a normal class experience; while most classes required that everyone muted until they raise their hand (understandable) she encouraged people to interject with questions and have natural conversations. She often went off on tangents with anecdotes tenuously related to the class material, but nonetheless enjoyable. As for actual teaching, some of her lectures left me confused and required me to go off and use other resources to figure out how to properly apply the concepts. She did work through some examples, and also put us in breakout rooms nearly every class to work through a few problems. If you're not a fan of zoom interaction you might not enjoy that, but sometimes working through the problems with a group could be helpful to solidify concepts as long as you weren't completely lost in the lecture. She is very clear with what she expects us to know for tests, going so far as to give sample tests that pretty closely mirror what's on the real thing. Homework assignments were never too bad but sometimes they didn't mirror questions that would be on the tests. She prefers to write test questions in the same way she writes classwork questions, which are different from questions from the book. I preferred it this way as book questions can be annoying. She gave us a group project and test over zoom, which could have gone poorly but ended up not being that bad. The project was to make a video explaining a concept from series/sequences. Not easy concepts, but you take the test as a group so hopefully someone knows what's going on for each section. That's how it worked out for me. Your mileage may vary. Overall, a solid recommendation. She emphasizes group work and interaction, if you're not about that sort of thing I guess you should stay away, but her tests are completely fair and the homework load is not bad at all. Also-- if you're reading this in non-covid times, congratulations, and her class structure may be different. But her character is the same, and I'd recommend taking her class on that alone.

May 2015

Yes, all the previous reviews for Daniela below says she's amazing and so will this one. Daniela is not just a great math professor but she's also a very sweet person if you have the chance to get to know her. I must admit, I never planned on taking Calc 2 (especially with the horror stories I've heard from my friends) but this course turned out not to be half as bad as I thought and I'll even say ended up really enjoying the class. First of all, Daniela is very good at her job, she's a great lecturer who is able to convey the materials in a way that everyone can understand. Although she has a bit of an accent, I don't think it was a problem for anyone. She will always start the lecture saying "any questions?" and she'll stop periodically to take any questions or clarify anything that you don't understand. I like that she did a lot of examples during lecture however I also wished that she had done a little more on the theory and proof behind the theorems we learn because otherwise it just becomes a matter of memorizing the formula and not understanding the logic behind what they are and why they work/why we use them etc. Also as a WARNING TO EVERYONE: the way that she lectures and does problems on the board makes it seems like math is very easy and this is true when you're just writing down whatever she's writing, BUT, don't not be fooled into this false sense of security because if you don't look over the problems and try to solve them yourself later you will be screwed over on the exams. And yes, her exams are brutal, but she does a review session in class before each one so be sure go over the problems she does in these sessions. She's always willing to help so if you need help go see her after class/during he office hour and if the hours doesn't work for you she also does OH by appointment. I want to also point out that for those who are not very mathematically inclined/are simply taking this course as a pre-req., you may fine her to be very monotonic and the lecture to be very dry. Daniela always comes in looking very tired/half dead (like all the time, sometimes I wonder if she's going to make it to the end of lecture) - DO NOT feed off this energy because it will make it very difficult for you to stay awake in class. Nonetheless, I would recommend Daniela to anyone who's thinking of taking calc 2.

May 2014

By far the best professor I've had at Columbia. He cares so much about his students actually learning. He's always super helpful, reasonable, and encouraging. If you ever have a conflict with where you can't make it to one of the quizzes and want to make it up, he'll tell you not to worry about it. If you ask for an extra day to do the homework, he'll give you a week. AND he gives full days of class time for midterm & final review. I really hope he continues to teach after his graduate studies, because he has a true talent and passion for teaching. I am never a fan of waking up for 8:40 classes, but Vivek Pal makes this completely worth. He is the only professor you should take Calc II with.

Apr 2014

Professor Altug is one of the BEST professors I've had at Columbia. Do not take any other Calculus II class over his. Honestly. I sat in on many other Calculus classes which my friends thought were good, but his is by far the best. I took him for Calculus I and II and he was great. He gives amazing notes in class and explains everything very slowly and extremely well. His homework is very relevant, with a few somewhat tough questions at the end, but he gives you a lot of questions to choose from, and you have to submit approx. 15 each week. The homework takes around 2 hours maximum each week. His exams are extremely fair! He gives hints in some questions and some bonus questions too for extra points. He really really cares whether his students are learning and is extremely accommodating. He wasn't planning on using Webassign but some students wanted it so he gave them a choice to do some questions on Webassign and handwrite some, or handwrite all. (His class does not have Webassign compulsory, which is great!) You need to study about 8 hours for the midterms if you attend the classes and do all the homework. He always posts sample midterms that are very very similar to his midterm.

Jan 2014

XIN WAN IS THE BEST THING TO HAPPEN TO COLUMBIA. every time I went to calc II he was there with a bright confused smile to help me through this course. without his adorable optimism and happy face, I would have hated calculus. BTW HE SENDS ADORABLE APOLOGETIC EMAILS ABOUT CULPA REVIEWS. ok it says this review isn't long enough and ihave to go so fjkLE/JKLT4OP5490595 FDWOT LOGN TDOES TS TEXT HAVE TO BE JEEZEE OUSSSIIEEEE

Sep 2013

Deopurkar is genuinely a kind person. He is approachable during office hours. But contrary to the over exaggerated reviews on culpa, his teaching style is if anything, average. I think people are just blinded by his adorable personality. Another reason why people are raving about him might be because the math department in Columbia is pretty sad when it comes to teaching undergrads. Yes, do take classes with Deopurkar, because you can do a lot worse. But don't expect him to be the best math teacher either, like some of these reviewers are claiming. I studied both calculus II and III with Deopurkar. Somehow I found his calc II class more difficult than Calc III. I'm not sure why this happened because a lot of people find calc III more challenging. Also, expect exam questions that require you to think outside the box. He gives some difficult exam questions, which in the long run, is good for you if you are planning on majoring in the sciences/engineering/math. However, if you're a premed student who cares a lot about your grades, I suggest that you consider carefully before signing up with him. Definitely not a guaranteed or easy A even if put in a lot of hours studying.

Sep 2013

Honestly, he isn't the best teacher for this class. I wouldn't recommend trying to get him as a teacher for a few reasons. 1) He doesn't seem to understand that he needs to be able to explain topics to the students rather than just read the problems. 2) He assumes that the class knows what he is doing and has memorized every derivative and integral known to man, which then causes him to skip steps and explanations that are necessary to understanding what he is doing. 3) His "lectures" are essentially him copying down exact definitions from the book, then writing them on a chalkboard, followed by examples that you can't really follow if you aren't sure of what he is doing. 4) He speaks to the board, and stands directly in front of what he is writing so taking notes is extremely difficult 5) He clearly knows what he is doing, but when you ask a simple question, he does not seem to understand why you wouldn't know what he is talking about. The homework is not too bad, but I only wish that he was better at explaining the concepts to those who need it. If you haven't taken BC Calculus before, I would advise you to seek out another teacher.

May 2013

Professor Stein is one of the best math professors out there. He may be a little monotonous in lecture but if you actually listen to him you'll pick up a joke here and there. He goes over proofs from the book at the beginning of lecture and then he does a bunch of problems that you can refer back to to help with the homework. Professor Stein is pretty cool when you get to know him and he's super helpful in office hours. He doesn't give busy work and he's clear as to what material you need to know and study.

Apr 2013

ANAND IS MY BOOOOO!!!! But actually though he is probably my favorite professor at Columbia so far. Such an adorable, likable character. He is so enthusiastic about the subject matter he teaches and breaks down even the most complicated of subjects making them very easy to understand. Even if by the end of the lecture you are still struggling, he is more than happy to help at his office hours. I took both Calculus II and III with Anand and could really tell that he wasn't just regurgitating information from a textbook or lecture presentation. He really wants his students to be able to understand the concepts and ideas behind the formulas. Basically if you're taking a math class and have the choice to take it with Anand. DO ITTTT. You will not regret it in the slightest and will come out with a clear knowledge of the underlying concepts of the subject matter. Did I mention Anand is adorable?? Also first week of spring semester he was stuck in India cuz the goofball lost his passport and visa LOL! <3 <3 <3 Anand!

Apr 2013

Professor Drewitz is a visiting professor from Germany. His teaching two introductory Calculus Classes is simply part of the requirement for his fellowship. Despite this, he speaks impeccable English and actually tries to be a good teacher. That said, he does not necessarily succeed at the latter. He refuses to spoon feed and prefers proofs, but in doing so the content of the course is obscured. That said, if you take good lecture notes and study them for two hours or so after each lecture, you should understand things. This class and its curve are messed up by the large number of students who took BC calculus in High School and know everything already, and the fact that it is required for all SEAS students. If you're in CC, you probably just need to take Calc III.

Jan 2013

Jorgensen is the best I've had thus far. He's funny and his notes are crystal clear, and does care to some degree. I feel he has polished his craft of teaching after so many years of dealing with students. He tries to make the class fun and somewhat theoretical, he teaches what you need to know to move on to further math. His grading could be unfair though, no partial credit. Doesn't use a text book either.

Jan 2013

I'll be frank with you. I got an F in Jorgensen's class. I had straight A's in Calculus AB at my competitive high school. I agree with the other reviews recently written in December of 2012 as well. He does not know how to teach. He assumes you are already a Calculus II expert and spends most of the time just doing problems he thinks are interesting. He works problems very quickly and the students in my class (including me) would frequently get lost. (You could tell because everyone would look at each other and have that "what is he doing?"-face on.) Do not be fooled by the "easiness" of the class. There are 2-4 homework problems each class and 3 tests that supposedly do not count. No textbook is used. He does not communicate via email or phone, so it's just in-person meeting times. I honestly was not the best student, but I do not think I deserved an F of all grades. Maybe a C- or D but never an F. I am convinced that Columbia keeps him in the math department because he is a brilliant mathematician and does not consider his horrible teaching. PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THIS CLASS OR ANY OTHER CLASSES WITH TROELS JORGENSEN. IT IS NOT WORTH YOUR TIME OR MONEY AT ALL. PERIOD. I wish someone had told me how horrible this professor was before I took the course. Now I have to deal with an F on my transcript, which is going to be a long and irritating process to fix. Don't make my same mistake, say no to Jorgensen.

Jan 2013

I would certainly not recommend this professor. His lectures covered the same exact problems that were in the textbook. He focused a lot on the proofs for different theorems, which he did not test on. The problem sets he assigned were much more difficult than the examples in the book, which made them extremely time-consuming, if not nearly impossible. Only if you have a good amount of time to spend on learning the specificities of calculus and doing extra practice problems (which he provides as Optional Exercises) would this class be alright.

Dec 2012

So many mixed feelings about this class. I received a pretty terrible grade, but I really just took the class for AP credit and had almost zero work the entire semester, so it was a reasonably fair trade-off, as I had more time to devote to other classes where I actually had a chance to do well. This is definitely the section to be in if you're not overly concerned with your GPA and don't plan on taking much more math. Lectures: I think the way Troels began the first class set the tone for a lackluster semester. He coming in, walked to the blackboard, and said, "This is a course in integration," then started writing without any introduction or syllabus. I learned next to nothing from Troels' lectures other than the formulas for integration by parts and single-variable curvature (what?). Every class was the same - "solutions" for the hw problems which involved leaps in logic that us non-mathematicians were incapable of following, the simplest problem from the next section, and a proof for something like the volume of a sphere which was usually a sign to stop taking notes. When asked for advice on how to solve one integral, he said, "You know, when you get to my age, sometimes, you just have to think about it. Maybe ride the subway or take a walk and it will come to you, like 'ah'!" Truly a brilliant mind. Exams: Short, but not easy if you haven't taken AP BC. There was never any indication as to what topics would show up; for the final, he told us to study arc length and curvature, then tested us on series and infinite sums. On his third midterm, one question required the use of methods used in calc 3, and when confronted on it, he asked who was enrolled in both courses and shrugged. For most of the exams, the only directions were "compute," and computing is what will make or break you. A few arithmetic errors will drop you from a B to a C on the final, and don't expect partial credit either. If you truly are a math person who doesn't mind the computations, you'll consistently get A's. Did poorly on an exam and want help improving? Don't bother going to the math help room - Troels' methods for doing problems are as much of a mystery to them as they are to you. Office hours were "by appointment" and were about as useful as the classes. Oh, and he doesn't hand back the homework until AFTER the exam. Good luck! Grading: Nothing but smoke and mirrors. On the first day of class, he claimed that as long as you attend class, do the homework, and take the exams, you'll "pass." Not very reassuring. He takes off points on homework and exams for what he considers sloppy handwriting, or showing TOO MUCH work. Your final may count for 100%, or it might not. Midterms and homework might affect your grade, or they might not. Who knows? Just don't expect much unless you've been doing great the entire class. As mentioned before, partial credit is sporadic. On one exam, it appeared as though I'd lost more points than a question was worth, and Troels just said that "your grade depends on your performance as a whole, not individual questions." What? I'm interested in seeing what percentage of the class received grades in the A-range, which was mysteriously absent from my transcript. Overall, this was the easiest class I took this semester, but also my worst in terms of amount learned and final grade. If you choose to take this class, come in with low expectations, and be wowed as even those aren't met. Enjoy!

Dec 2012

Like many have said before me, your final grade is based entirely on the score you get on the final. Depending on how good you are at calculus, this can either be a ridiculously good thing or a ridiculously bad thing. Several things: 1). Jorgensen will give you no work. No textbook work, no matlab; you will have no more than two to three easy problems to do for each class. The class is fairly easy, provided you actually go to class and motivate yourself take notes. If you're the type of person who will probably start skipping class into the semester, you probably will not do well. 2). Jorgensen does not use the book. You don't even need to buy the textbook. He also doesn't use a syllabus. So what does he teach? You could say he makes up his own curriculum. He'll probably teach you curvature functions, hyperbolic curves, cardioids, etc. He will not teach you the various ratio tests and other common Calculus II topics. Hence, since he has the tendency to teach very uncommon things, you don't really have the option of skipping class. 3). Jorgensen assumes you have pre-existing proficiency with Calculus II, and has the opinion that it's as easy as algebra. Thus, he has a tendency to skip a lot of steps in his explanations. You will probably get lost once or twice every class. There's really no need to worry, because if it looks unduly complicated, it will never show up on the final. Good teacher? Not really. However, he was certainly the easiest I had this semester.

Nov 2012

Anand is a fantastic teacher. He is very enthusiastic about teaching and clearly cares that his students understand the material well. He is a good lecturer and is able to effectively write problems on the board. He is exceedingly fair on tests and is true to his word that he will never put something on a test that we haven't already done in class/home work. If you study and do the problem sets, the midterms are very reasonable. Calc II is definitely a harder class than Calc I, but Anand makes it easy to learn and (perhaps) enjoyable.

Aug 2012

Take Calc. II with Stein! He's very helpful after class and during office hours, and also has a sense of humor that manages to dig its way into class once in a while. His lectures are pretty good; during the first half of the semester he'll go through examples that you should study for the midterms, but during his lectures on series, he'll also demonstrate a lot of interesting properties that not every professor will want to spend time on. I very much appreciated the effort, and thought it made studying math a whole lot more interesting! Now if you don't care about how interesting the course is, take this course anyway because the difficulty of homework and exams is pretty average. As long as you practice both the regular homework and the WebAssign questions, you should be fine. He also releases stats on class performance on exams, which should be helpful if you're deciding whether or not to drop it. But if you're actually interested in Math, take this course, or any other one with Stein for that matter!

Jul 2012

Professor Nironi, or Fabio as we affectionately call him, is incredibly dedicated to teaching in the most basic sense: his goal is to make you learn math, not to make it easy or fun. I took Calc II and Calc III with him. He will put in many extra hours to help his students; he holds an optional recitation to do homework problems and frequently meets with students in his office. That said, while he works extra hours, so will you. My classmates and I spent a great deal more time working for his class than our friends in other sections. I really recommend finding a study group within his class, that was super helpful for me. Do not take Fabio's class if you are easily frustrated, entirely uninterested in math, or just want an easy A. I felt that grading was very fair, but the averages were brutally low, so much so that your raw score was basically meaningless. I got an A both semesters, but I worked really hard and enjoyed a lot of the math. As a person, Fabio is a wonderful, kind, eccentric, brilliant-professor type. I sincerely appreciated how he would be knitting an enormous fuzzy sweater during our midterms and some of his better comebacks when people asked annoying questions. He also never intentionally made me feel stupid (and I asked a fair amount of questions). He would never think of sending a student to a TA without helping him/her first. He didn't even trust the TA's (with good reason) to grade our finals. I'm really glad that I took Fabio's class, but it certainly wasn't easy. Best of luck!

Jun 2012

So, indeed, prof Nironi is a very smart guy, HOWEVER this is not an excuse for his poor teaching abilities!! The class was incredibly hard. Nironi assumes that all student have previous knowledge in clac 2 and linear algebra and spends all of the class period doing crazy hard profs on the board. He often teach material that is not included in the syllabus or in the book, which he gives handouts for; but good luck with understanding them. It came to a point where the TA's in the help room didn't knew how to solve his hw, and exams questions. The exams are Incredibly hard. The average for the first midterm was about %45 (!) and it did not resembled the practice exam or the hw problems in any way. Basically, nothing can prepare you for this class, so do yourselves a favor and take it with a different professor.

Apr 2012

AMAZING!!! I mean, Calc II was no walk in the park, but Professor De Silva helped explain everything and tried to make things very clear. She was even willing to help me out on a question on the final I was confused about. She was very pregnant when I took the course (this was back in Fall '08), and when she told us that she shouldn't be coming to class anymore and decided to hand the reins over to her husband temporarily, she gave birth that Saturday! Then, she returned to administer the final! How awesome was that? And she really cares about her students, answering questions in her awesome accent and trying to make things clear. If you can take this class with anyone, De Silva is the one.

Jan 2012

This class was hell, to put it simply. He spends class periods going through long and complicated proofs, which he can't clearly explain and which he doesn't often completely finish. He knows the knows the subject a little too well - he'll give explanations that skip several steps, which would be fine if we weren't trying to learn the information for the first time. He will backtrack and explain if you ask him to, but often his explanations become more convoluted with time. And because he's so familiar with the subject, he has his own method of solving problems that don't correlate at all with the textbook and don't make sense to a lot of students. Homework isn't bad, provided you go through the textbooks explanations and use the math help room for any questions you have. However, once homework starts including his practice tests, your kind of screwed. I've taken the test to the help room and had TA's be completely stumped, and asking me if I was sure it was for Calc II and not a higher class. Unfortunately, these practice tests are a good reflection of what the midterms and final look like, meaning not good. Review sessions before the test - eh, go if you want to. It probably won't actually help, but feel free. I went to all of them, and each felt like a waste of time.

Jan 2012

no matter how good he is able to articulate concepts. Peter Horn is surely NOT a good instructor. Truly good instructors really inspire you to explore more on your own and inspire your love in the subject. But Peter Horn does the complete OPPOSITE. he makes you HATE math not because it is hard but because you hate him. if you look at h ow mixed his reviews are, you will know how he treats his students. For students he doesn't like or isn't familiar with, he is extremely harsh and mean and doesn't even bother to answer your questions. If you don't happen to be the first in every exam, you'd better ingratiate yourself towards him. Otherwise..... in a word, his good articulation of materials is rendered meaningless by his favoritsm. Take him if you are a zillion percent confident that you can win his favor. And DON'T ever expect him to instill in you a love for the subject. Just focus on the math and try to forget how objectionable he is.

Dec 2011

Calc II with Prof. Nironi was pretty much hell, even for a an engineering major with a pretty good math background. He is a very nice, understanding person but he isn't very good at explaining the topics. He makes Calc II way harder than it has to be by teaching techniques not included in the textbook and spends every lecture doing confusing proofs. He didn't even finish the syllabus so I still haven't learned parametrics or polar coordinates. Unless you are a talented, math major AVOID AT ALL COSTS. He's a nice person but this class is not worth it.

Dec 2011

Just going to add to the rest of the relatively accurate reviews that I'm doing calc 3 now and we are working through second order differential equations. Joerg decided to skip chapter 9 of Stewart (Differential Equations) in our calc 2 class. As I recall, it was replaced with some rambling on the cardioid. I will however quote the Chapter 9's first sentence: "Perhaps the most important of all the applications of calculus is to differential equations." ..good thing we got the cardioid down pat.

Dec 2011

I would highly recommend Lan's Calculus II. Though her English is impressive for a non-native speaker, I could see how the language barrier might be a hindrance in Calculus I; however, in Calc II, after you've already been introduced to calculus, it's not a problem. She also makes a point of writing everything on the board (which may be in response to previous complaints), so your notes are comprehensive and relatively easy to use for studying. There are 10 homework problems a week, which are highly manageable. Also, one week when she thought we'd be particularly busy, she only gave us 5 problems (and recently, because she thought a homework was really difficult, she allowed us to do an hour-long Q&A session on it in class, which was very helpful). Despite a relatively short time in teaching, she both anticipates questions and answers them quite well. She understands what trips people up and has many alternative ways of explaining concepts. On top of all this, she's an incredibly nice and modest person--particularly when you consider that her academic accomplishments (e.g. writing a dissertation on differential geometry and teaching a seminar in Riemannian Relativity--all in her second language) could make her very arrogant. She's also adorable, and it's hard to leave her class without a smile.

Nov 2011

He seems like a nice guy and he actually cares about his class. Also, from what I've heard from my friends, he seems to be one of the few Calc teachers that speaks native and unaccented English, which is nice. That said, his explanations never helped me that much and his lectures often strayed into unrelated (mathematical) topics. He'll spent 30 minutes proving a theorem we are learning and then not have time to talk much about the uses of the theorem. In other words, he loves the math a little too much to teach it well, in my opinion. Lectures are worth going to, but expect to be doing some reading and searching for explanations from the book also if you're not normally that great with math.

Nov 2011

Professor Nironi is a great guy. He is very nice and takes time to help a student in the middle of his lectures. His lectures can get a bit confusing at times, but if you skim the text book your notes will start making sense. He has many little quirky mannerisms that if you pick up on will allow you to really enjoy going to class. Homework is reasonable and the midterms are fine if you study for them. He is a pretty generous grader and will give out a few A+s. Overall I really enjoyed my Calc 2 experience and I am taking Calc 3 with him.

Oct 2011

Professor Vela-Vick is a really cool, down to earth and strait forward guy. Taking my first math course at Columbia certainly was nerve wrecking (Calculus 1), but after experiencing his teaching style my concerns were put to rest. He's very smart but yet is able to relate/communicate effectively to those of us who aren't mathematicians. He goes over concepts/examples in class, and our homework is nearly identical with a few difficult questions that just make you think for a while (at least for me). He gives a practice exam right before the test which is probably 80% similar to the actual test, the remaining 20% comes from 1 or 2 questions he chose from the homework. If you study the homework/in class examples/ practice test you're in great shape. I'm only half way through his class so I can't comment on the other midterm or final, but I'm assuming this all applies. Taking his class and doing well ensures you have a very very very good understanding of the subject.

May 2011

I'm guessing that you could do a lot worse than Yannan Qiu for a Calc II teacher. He has a fairly thick accent, but it completely understandable, and his handwriting - no exaggeration - is possibly the nicest I've ever seen. Each lecture is based on a section or two from the book and feature a handful of examples/theories that he does a pretty good job of explaining (for the most part). Some of the examples are not as clear or concise, but I don't think that it affects how well you will understand the material - the most learning in the course, I think, comes from the problem sets. The problem sets are weekly, and tend to be quite long. The shortest was 9 problems, the longest an epic 21! For the most part, however, the sets are between 12-15 problems, usually taking a few hours to complete. There are 2 midterms in this class - the first about 6 weeks in and the second about a month later. The first is extremely straight forward and features questions that only ask you to integrate. The second midterm was a bit more difficult, and the averages indicated this. The final exam was extremely fair and straight forward, with 2/3 of the material coming from sections that were learned after the second midterm. A week before the exam he distributed a sample final which turns out to be a rough draft for the final - there are many of the same types of problems and even an exact problem or two. Qiu is a very nice guy, who is incredibly intelligent. I think he's pretty funny, too, but not because he tells jokes or anything like that. His hilarity comes from his interactions with students where he will occasionally giggle at a student's suggestion on how to solve a problem, all in good nature. Would suggest taking Calc II with this professor if you have to take this class.

May 2011

Yes, he sounds SOMEWHAT like "Jimmy" from South Park. Let's get that out of the way. He ALSO is one of the smartest professors I've yet met at Columbia though. He has exceptional facility with numbers -- the entire class was shocked when he solved difficult computations in his head. This trait makes him somewhat intimidating, but ultimately helps immeasurably in his presentation of materials by allowing him to focus on theory rather than just computation. His exams are very fair -- the content of the actual exams closely mirrors the sample exams he distributes ahead of time, and he is extremely lenient with regard to partial credit. Like other posters have said, he occasionally curves. The first midterm he did not curve at all. The second midterm had a strange (half your score +40) formula. The final had an interesting (raw score *.6 + 42) curve as well. Homework is often very challenging, but you have the benefit of turning it in immediately prior to the exam at once -- in other words, there is absolutely no penalty for late homework, providing you get it in prior to the exam day. The best thing about him, though, is that he is always extremely helpful and very responsive to emails. Calc II can be rough, especially the work on series, but he was always ready and willing to answer any questions you might have. He ALSO doesn't make you feel like an idiot if you don't understand his initial explanation and ask for clarification. Lectures are good to go to, since many exam questions come directly from the notes. As in at least 50% of them in this class' case. Even so, many people opted not to come to class and -- concordantly -- their grades suffered. Class time is also useful as he encourages students to come to the board and work out in-class exercises. All in all, I would consider him a wonderful professor and -- should the opportunity to take a course with him present itself -- go ahead and take it without fear.

Apr 2011

Though Yannan Qiu has a bit of an accent and Calc 2 is a notoriously aggravating class, Qiu was an amusing teacher, and always more than willing to answer student's questions. His explanations weren't always the most clear the first time, but it was easy to get him to reexplain theories and proofs. That being said, a re-explanation didn't necessarily clear up all confusion, but doing the homework was usually enough to solidify the ideas. There were also a number of funny moments in class, when he would make a mistake on the board or make a joke about something, usually his inability to pronounce students' names. It helps to sit near the front of the class to hear him, since as other reviewers mentioned he has a soft voice. He is very generous about grading on exams. It was easy to go to him and explain the intention of your work on a problem to garner some points, many times enough to raise the grade by a decent amount. He doesn't always understand where you were going on a problem if you reach the wrong answer, but it's definitely worth it to talk to him about it.

Mar 2011

He's an alright teacher. I didn't really learn much from him, but I think it's because of his teaching style. I found it hard to follow his lectures because it lacked direction. He would write examples on the board and start solving them and I'd have no idea where he was going with all of it. Also, I had it as a 9am class and combined with his soft voice and the fact that nearly everyone else was just as drowsy, I found it had to actually engage myself in the class. However, his tests and homework assignments are pretty straightforward. I still went to lecture, but I'm sure it wouldn't have mattered if I just studied the textbook instead. Every once in a while, he'll say something dorky or laugh awkwardly and the class will laugh, and it was be eye-opening because I never knew so many people actually paid attention to him.

Jan 2011

He is a very soft spoken, timid professor (and actually kind of adorable). In class, he tends to rush over things and assume you know the material; however, if you've taken Calc 2 or something like it before, you'll probably find the class easy. The exams are not difficult (the problem sets are way harder) and he's very generous with giving out a practice exam right before. It can be frustrating because his lectures are often not very organized - frequently he makes mistakes in the examples. Overall, he isn't God awful, but it's not a guaranteed A by any means. At best, a sufficient review of calc 2 for seasoned people. Since lectures are not necessarily that demanding, it's a chill class for those who are mathematically inclined and want to skip a few without feeling like you've missed anything. Chances are, you probably didn't.

Jan 2011

Daniela De Silva was one of my best math teachers I have had in college so far and I am a math major. Her class was actually enjoyable. She speaks english, is clear, and cared to teach the material. Any time I went to her office hours, she clearly explained any issue or question I had with the information. The midterms and final required work but were doable if you put the time in to learn the concepts she taught in class. If you have an option for calc II teachers- I would say take only her class.

Jan 2011

First, he goes by Shea, his middle name. Shea was an excellent teacher for Calc II. I took Calc BC in high school, so I was very comfortable with about 2/3 of the material, but I definitely needed some review. Shea went over things in a very logical fashion in class, and his notes were extremely clear. He would always label things as "idea," "theorem," "definition," "example," and even "Pro-Tip." He was very good at answering questions and clearing up misunderstandings. He took every question seriously and never talked down to students who were having a hard time. For exams, he provided a sheet with common trig identities, derivatives, and integrals (both of which included trig functions), which prevented students from memorizing things for no reason. He gave out the formula sheet before the exam so we would know what we would have at our disposal during exams. The formula sheet was the same for the whole course. For both midterms and the final, he provided practice exams that were supposed to be about the same as the exams in length, difficulty, and sort of problem, though he specified that just because a topic did not appear on a practice test did not mean it would not be on the exam. I noticed on one of these practice exams that he had just taken problems from the book, but that it essentially what his tests were like so there was no harm in that. The exams were similar to the homework, with no curveball questions that try to trick you. He did move pretty quickly through some of the material, but I think if you do the homework and go to office hours (I never went, but based on his personality and behavior in class I imagine they would be quite helpful) if you need to you should be okay. I recommend him.

Jan 2011

Not to be prescriptive, but I'd say Gabor is a pretty good choice. 1. For one thing, he has basically no accent. 2. Very organized. 3. We got through all the material with a few lectures to spare for review days. Conversely, I heard about a Calc II professor who added an extra lecture during reading period because he didn't fit everything in. 4. Open to criticism and questions, and actively tries to get the class to participate a little. Like almost any calc class, it's just the book in lecture form. But if you like hearing the material, and hearing it in different ways, he'll explain a concept another way if you say you don't understand. 5. He is simply adorable. I don't mean in the attractive sense; don't expect someone attractive. But he tells adorably lame jokes, had some naive optimism that there was at least one future mathematician in the class, and is just generally a pleasant guy. Somehow it struck me as purely endearing that he wore the exact same pair of jeans every day. (EXACT same. There was a loose thread on the back left pocket that was there the entire semester.) 6. You'll get a good grade. I got an A-, coming from an AP Calc AB background and putting an average of 2 and a half hours per week into homework/studying, plus studying an extra 5 hours or so before each midterm. Probably could've gotten an A if I'd had the energy to study extra for the final.

Jan 2011

While Qiu has a somewhat thick accent that contributes to regular “disconnects” between him and his students, his English is nonetheless understandable for the most part. Be warned that if Qiu is short on time, he has a tendency to rush through his lessons without making sure that the class is on the same page. (Rushing through Calc II lessons) + (Somewhat thick accent) = Confusion Nonetheless, Qiu is very bright and immensely competent in the subject matter. In addition, he is an approachable guy who can be pretty funny (“The population will naturally go towards carrying capacity unless there is a war and people are killed”), and he really makes himself available to help his students. If you’re stuck on a problem, you can bet that Qiu would be more than happy to help you out and guide you to the solution; I have never seen Qiu stumped by a calculus problem. Even though he frequently regurgitates the Stewart textbook (which predictably leads to some people not showing up to class), I would highly recommend that you attend his lectures. A number of heavily proof-based topics that appear on his finals are outside the scope of the Stewart textbook. To get the most out of Qiu’s lectures, it may be a good idea to read the Stewart book first and learn the lecture material on your own before going to class. That way, you won’t be so confused. Calc II is a challenging class and Qiu may not be the best math professor at Columbia. But if you stay on top of the problem sets, do extra practice problems from the Stewart book, seek help from Qiu when you need help, and pay close attention in class, an A is totally doable (top 25% of class gets A’s). You can get a lot out of this class.

Jan 2011

Professor Vela-Vick, who goes by his middle name, Shea, is a great choice for Calculus II. Shea mostly lectured from the textbook, but usually did a good job of distilling the technical language into simpler terms. The material was sometimes difficult, but he always took time to stop and answer everyone's questions and was never dismissive or condescending when people were slow to understand concepts. Admittedly, things moved fast (especially towards the end of the semester with Taylor and Maclaurin Series) but Shea was always very helpful and approachable during office hours. He scheduled extra office hours for the weeks leading up to finals and was always willing to schedule another meeting time if regular hours didn't work for you. In addition, he's a very nice guy who cares a lot about his students, and he will tell you interesting/funny math stories if you talk to him. During the final, he brought lifesaver candies for the class because he had heard of a "statistical correlation between peppermint consumption and test performance." The weekly problem sets were moderately difficult, but the two midterms and final were easier than the homework and practice tests he gave. At any rate, if you stay on top of your work and go to office hours for those difficult problems, you'll be fine.

Dec 2010

Such a bizarre class. Took it first semester freshman year after scraping a 4 in AB my senior year in high school. Looking back, I don't know why I took Calc II--I guess I wanted to challenge myself and although Calc II isn't regarded as a challenging class at Columbia (even for freshmen), I figured it would be for me. Boy was I right. Everything about Jorgensen's class was a challenge--from finding time to copy down his explanations of the cardioid before he erases them to figuring out if the word he just said was "theta" or "zero" to getting a clear answer when you ask about the topics for the upcoming midterm. Teaches maybe half the concepts of Calc II mixed in with random lectures on Calc III topics. This guy just doesn't give a shit, plain and simple. To reinforce what you read already, DO NOT TAKE THIS CLASS IF YOU PLAN TO TAKE HIGHER MATH. You'll get an A or a B if you give half a shit, but that's only because the midterms and homework don't count for anything...and the final (which, as rumored, is 100% of your grade) is insanely easy. If you're a fan of syllabi, lesson plans, office hours, e-mails, review sessions, any student/professor discourse that helps you study and clarify the material, take someone else's class. If, like me, you took this class for no particular reason, regret your decision, and just hope for a satisfactory grade, then at least you have nothing to fear. You pretty much can't fail unless you don't show up most of the time, do none of your homework, and scribble on the final. I got a B- (extremely low for that class, I think) and I either skipped or daydreamed during every lecture, failed every midterm, and did maybe 2/3 of the assignments. I learned how to do two new things: integrate by parts and expand taylor series. The final is a mix of calc I and II, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised. Overall: Jorgensen's class is confusingly unsubstantial, a trivial, forgettable foray into mathematics in what I predict will be an otherwise math-less college career. Although I can't guarantee you'll learn anything about calculus when you take it, you might just learn something about black holes. Because that's what this class was for me: A BIG, GAPING BLACK HOLE. Happy integrating!

Dec 2010

This course is very challenging, and Prof. Qiu doesn't do much to help you except spend class time rewriting the text book examples on the chalk board. If you bombard him with questions you might stand a chance--he is very nice and helpful at office hours-- but for the most part the curve is what will save you. I would not really recommend this course, but if you're taking it it's because you need a requirement fulfilled anyway.

Dec 2010

Bad teacher. Nice guy. He is a brilliant man who really knows his stuff. However, in lectures he teaches you nothing. He just goes over complicated problems, skipping several steps in between. If you ask questions, he doesn't answer them. He just waves it off and says to watch and he keeps going. Avoid him if you want to learn any calculus. There is no clear cut way to tell what he really asks of you on the tests. For example, I went up to him during the final to ask a question, and he just told me to go sit down. First of all, very unprofessional and it shows just how unhelpful he can be.

Jul 2010

Utter Disaster. His English isn't sufficiently clear to understand if he's saying "n" or "m" when he speaks. He routinely makes sign errors when working examples, and he skips steps -- often the steps that are the crux of the technique he's trying to demonstrate. When you ask for him to clarify a point, he just repeats what he said the last time, he can't explain the issue a different way. This leads to the other students trying to answer questions. While we're helpful for each other, the class would probably be more useful if structured as a giant self-help session. On the first day of class, 30 people attended. By the third day, we were down to 18 in the room, with 10 paying attention. Over all, plan to learn by reading the textbook, not from the professor.

May 2010

Professor Wang is a really good professor. As a starting note, I'd like to say that he does have a stutter, as mentioned by another poster, but it's really not bad. Understanding what he is saying is really not a problem, and his explanations of things are always very clear. You may be a little surprised at the first class, but you will quickly get used to it and see it's nothing to worry about. He is well prepared for literally every single lecture and is a real beast at math, so he can intelligently answer virtually any question thrown at him (although I never asked a single question during class, I watched others do it- some questions being alarmingly stupid). He grades things incredibly fast, which is an added bonus. I remember that our first midterm grades were posted literally hours after we'd taken it, with the breakdown and whatnot sent as an email as well. Professor Wang handles all of this well and is basically just a really chill guy. Good class.

Apr 2010

Mr. Obus was by far the best professor i had the first semester, i truly enjoyed going to his class. All too often you hear horror stories about Columbia's math department, it usually goes....He didn't teach a thing, He mumbles, He goes too fast, and my favorite "I just can't understand the guy." This man is non of the above. He teaches through examples, is never bothered by questions, always stays late to explain things you may have missed or just didn't understand, and above all the man teaches!!! As a testament to his teaching prowess the averages on the exams were in the 80's and mid 70's for the final; and i showed the exams to others with different professors and they exclaimed that it looked just as hard if not a little harder. PS now having gone a semester with a prof that i couldn't understand, frustrated me and having to teach myself Calc III i know that what i had first semester was a god send. Thank You Mr. Obus

Jan 2010

Obus is simply and plainly the man! His course was by far the most interesting and pleasant one I had this semester. He literally jumps for joy when solving an integral problem. His enthusiasm knows no bounds. In terms of his grading, he is invariably fair! Mean grades were the highest on both midterms compared to the other Calc 2 sections. Three adjectives that best describe him: helpful, energetic, committed! He always remains in class until everyone has left to explain difficult aspects of the material to students. Obus has a great sense of humor and is always positive in class. Even if you hate math, you will love this guys class b/c he is so damn cool! Take this professor at all costs!

Dec 2009

Great professor. Lectures are easy to understand and relevant to the exam. He is very sincere and approachable. He responds fully to questions from students during lectures and through e-mails. Overall, a very likable person. The course material itself can be challenging if you were not a "mathematically-inclined" student in high school. However, with enough effort, anyone can do well in the course. There are no curve-balls on the exam so as long as you review your lecture notes and do your homework, you are guaranteed at least a decent grade. You learn a good amount throughout the course. The pace is not fast but you can get behind really fast if you don't be careful. It is possible to do well without attending the lectures, but it is recommended especially towards the end of the semester. I personally recommend you to attend lectures regularly. By not doing so, you can miss out on random talks/discussions, and some announcements regarding exams. homework, and such. Grades are based on homework (20%), two midterms (20%+20%), final (40%) Midterm and Finals are not curved but the final grade is curved. I assume that around 85% is the cutoff line for an A.

Dec 2009

Calc. II isn't hard. What gives people problems is the open ended way in which problems are presented. The solutions either involve A LOT of thought or a simple comparison test... this is an intuitive mental process, something that can't really be taught at the pace in which the material is presented. Why else would it be that everyone is studying the same material, yet the range of grades on the midterms is sometimes as wide as 40-100%? Professor De Silva is a great teacher, but in order to do well you have to know what kind of student you are and what help you need. There's only so much so she can do in a class, and she understands that completely. She goes out of her way for office hours and one-on-ones with students... believe me, in my section there was one student who was a teacher's absolute worst nightmare, but she has the patience of a saint. She lays out the techniques and teaches you ways to recognize when to apply them. There is no other way to teach Calculus II. If you do badly on tests it's not really her fault and I've never heard anybody blame her (which is rare with a bunch of smart kids).

Dec 2009

Awesome teacher. Definitely the best teacher I have had the first semester. Taught the material very well and enthusiastically, whenever there was a doubt anyone could easily ask any question, but he taught so well questions weren't frequent. Mid terms and finals were okay, mean on mid terms was almost 80 and on the final it was 74. His homeworks are enough preparation for them, a few book problems each time. Two homeworks are a bit longer than the rest, but you get an extra week for each of them. He is often funny and his class is just delightful, though it gets a bit boring during the second half. Obus is the bee's knees.

Dec 2009

Professor De Silva is one of the best math teachers I have ever had. She presents the material in an organized, easy to understand fashion and always makes herself available for extra help with extra office hours. This being said, Calc II is an extremely difficult course, and De Silva's is not an exception. Her tests get curved and homework counts as much as a midterm do, though, so it's not all bad. If you have a knack for math you will be more than okay, but if you struggle like I do be ready to do countless practice problems in preparation for her tests.

Dec 2009

Taking Calculus II with Patrick Gallagher is like taking Calculus II with your kind grandfather. He usually teaches harder courses, but of course he's nice enough to teach some introductory ones as well, and at times, he'll put things so simply that it feels like he is actually speaking to a 4 year-old. He is an elderly kind man and his lectures cover exactly what you need to know, meaning you'll hardly ever have to look to the book for clarification. However, his lectures do tend to run late often, as his eyes cannot see the clock in the back of the room. Also, because he's is a pure mathematician in the purest sense, he gives a lot of proofs. A LOT. And you don't need to know them for tests or homeworks, which means that once he begins one of his 10-minute proofs, you can put your pencil down and safely nap for a while. He sometimes also puts ideas and defines things in a more abstract mathematical way, which may not have been suitable for a low-level class, as there were times when it seemed like the entire class was lost. Overall, I'd highly recommend Professor Gallagher. He will perhaps be the nicest professor you'll ever have, is very accommodating to students, and will answer any question in class and phrase his responses in a cute grandfatherly way.

Dec 2009

Dr. De Silva is a great professor. She is extremely nice, her lectures are clear, and she is helpful during office hours. Her exams are reasonable and problem sets are graded leniently. However, this course definitely requires work, and it often took one or two trips to the math help room to complete the homework. Thankfully, she drops the lowest homework grade, meaning that if you keep up with your work during the semester, you won't have homework due during finals. Altogether, I can't imagine how this class could have been better. Math is not my strong suit but I came out of Daniela's class feeling much more confident about it.

Dec 2009

Professor Gallagher is a sweet man and a great mathematician, but a terrible teacher. Switch out of his section if you can. His lectures are quite boring, he delves into proofs too much, and generally makes one hate math. I used to be quite fond of Calculus until I took this class. Gallagher takes off an insane amount of points for stupid mistakes--make sure you check and re-check your answers. Also, he has much respect for the curve. You won't get a bad grade if you put in a substantial amount of effort, but if you intend to learn some math or if you're pre-med, switching out may be the best option. If not, be prepared to frequent the Math Help Room.

Dec 2009

Professor Obus is great. He seems genuinely enthusiastic about teaching, and he explains everything clearly. He actually learned our names, too. He is nice about answering questions and he teaches using a lot of examples, so you can take his class if you're not confident with calculus. He occasionally jokes around and tells math-related stories, which keeps class from getting too boring. He doesn't skip any steps when he writes math on the chalkboard, so it's easy to follow along. Many times, he will write verbatim every word he speaks. I found it slightly annoying at first, but actually it's good because it slows the pace a little and you can write down the important stuff without missing any details. His lectures are organized and overall I thought the class was easy. He spends some time the class before an exam to review and tell us what to expect. He also held a review session for the final.

Dec 2009

Harold is really a great guy and will do as much as he can to make sure everyone understands the material. Before class he'll always have conversations about pretty much everything and you can tell he LOVES math and enjoys teaching it. The only problem he has is that he is a little awkward but that's not big deal, trust me. This was the first time he taught Calc II and I'm not sure if he'll do it again in the near future but he covers everything you need to know. For homework he uses Webwork instead of written assignments which helps you a bit since it gives you extra tries to get questions right but a lot of the problems are hard. Also his tests are generally hard but he curves at the end and the quiz can count or not depending on if it helps or hurts your grade.

Nov 2009

Professor Zhang is an interesting professor. The first day of class when he opened his mouth, I thought I was totally screwed because of his accent. I thought it was going to be one of those classes you have nightmares about, you know, the ones where you can't understand ANYTHING the professor is saying and the material is SUPER difficult to grasp. Well, anyways, once you get past his accent, he's actually a pretty good teacher. He often let's you out of class early, holds regular office hours and will not show you the answer but guide you through a problem if you had one. To be honest, I failed the first midterm. The second midterm I got a C-. I would have failed the class except... he gave me this ultimatum basically. I never went to class or did homework, but if I turned in all of my homework for the rest of the semester and went to class and got an 85 or above on the final, he would make my overall grade for the class the same as my final exam grade. Needless to say I scraped by BARELY with an 87% and received a B+. How's that for procrastination!

Oct 2009

Good professor. Goes into more detail than the textbook and does a good job explaining why the material Calculus II (which a lot of people skip) is important and useful. Stresses and does a good job explaining Taylor/Maclaurin series, which actually end up being very important in higher level math (esp. ODE, PDE).

Jul 2009

I thought she was fairly clear in explaining concepts, though poor at understanding what students were asking her or saying to her. She was condescending and acused the class of not studying, when I'm sure that at least a few studied and could not answer the questions she asked. Her grading was fair, and she did seem to put some effort into her lectures. The workload was perfectly managable. I thought she was an okay professor.

May 2009

Calculus II has some hard material, but Daniela presented it effectively and efficiently. There was no race to finish the material, she was always willing to answer questions/host office hours, and help with homework. She went at a fast pace, and some outside work was required to do well on the exams. The curve at the end of the class took care of any problems you might have had on the midterms (I outright failed one of the midterms and got an A- in the class). Daniela's also just a very nice person with an adorable italian accent. I would highly recommend her for a calculus class.

Apr 2009

I shopped around amongst several Calc II professors when I finally happened upon Daniela. She was great! As mentioned by other students, she prefers that you finish your problem sets and learn from them rather than turn them in incomplete. This doesn't mean you get automatic extensions, or even easy extensions. It means if you show up to office hours, demonstrate that you've struggled with it and get help, she might give you extra time to apply that help and figure out the set. One quick note about the course: The two major topics are integration and series. You will learn a lot of different methods for working with both and the two major ideas in the course for each section are what the methods are and when to apply them. It can be fairly easy to lull yourself into a false sense of security by learning the methods one chapter at a time (with the exercises for each chapter focusing on each method) without learning how to recognize what to use when. The book has two chapters (strategy for integration and strategy for testing series) that she skipped during our term. These chapters pretty much just go over when to use what, and more importantly, have exercises where you have to figure out which method(s) to apply. Practicing on recognizing when to use which methods by working problems in these chapters is HIGHLY recommended as exam prep as this can be an art on its own.

Jan 2009

Professor Kerzhner is a great, easy going person. Our class was small (about 30-40 people) so he knew everyone's names. One disadvantage of this is that he can call on you even if you don't raise your hand; however I think it was a better situation than the huge class I'm in now. He does have a bit of a stutter, though, but pretty much only when he says people's names. There were two assignments a week, but each was half the length of other classes' problem sets. He said he knew we would wait until the last day anyway, so he made sure we didn't overwhelm ourselves with one one massive problem set. One problem set is dropped. The midterms are easy: there are six questions (for 120 points total) and you are only graded out of 100. Any extra credit is carried over to the other midterm. The final was a bit more difficult, but again there were 240 possible points, and they were graded out of 200. I highly recommend Prof. Kerzhner. He does not require that students be able to do proof-based questions even if he shows them to you. And with so much room to make mistakes and still get an A, how could you go wrong?

Jan 2009

Daniela is hands down the best Calculus II teacher you're finding. She writes everything up on the board for you so that it's easier to take notes. The accent is mild and completely intelligible (unlike many other Mathematics professors). The workload and grading are fair in most respects; the class grade is also curved relatively generously. Midterms about 5 questions each, the final is 10 questions; nothing on them is an outright surprise, it has all been covered at some time during lectures. No crazy proofs in this class either. Use her recommended problems too.

Jan 2009

Calc II can be a pain but with Prof Woit it was less of a hassle than it had to be. He's American (which is always a plus in the math department) and explains the material quite well in class, giving examples and "tricks" which help us do the problems..although I really did not absorb how to do the problems until I had to conquer his problem sets. Although he stutters a bit, it does not detract from his teaching. He is very helpful during office hours too. The downside is his problem sets are 10x harder than they need to be and surprisingly take hours for a seemingly innocuous 10-15 problems. I would recommend doing the webwork problems before the problem sets because even though they are due later, they are much easier and the computer tells you if you have a problem wrong so you can go fix it. Try to do all the webwork problem sets fully because that is an easy 100 grade that is not reliant on the TAs grading habits or random difficult problems. Then for the hand-in homework, go to Math Help...but do not despair. It is only 10% of your grade and the rest of the class and even some of the TAs in math help WILL struggle with the homework too (especially the last few problems). However, once you have mastered the tricky problem sets well, the midterms look ridiculously easy and very basic. Also, do look at the book once in awhile because it does help although it's not necessary.

Jan 2009

Professor Virdol is not a good teacher. He is funny, laughs to himself a lot. His handwriting is almost impossible to decipher the first few weeks (ask well as his accent) but if you go to class regularly then you will understand it. I do not recommend taking his class if you have not taken Calculus in high school. If you are one of those who got a 4 on the AP Calc BC test or a 5 on the AP Calc AB test then this professor is the one for you. He doesn't teach and as long as you do the homework well then you'll be fine. The final was hard but great curve. The homework questions are usually pretty easy but there are some annoying intricate ones as well. Webworks is annoying.

Jan 2009

Calculus II is hard enough as it is without a good professor. TAKE IT WITH PROFESSOR DE SILVA. She's fantastic at explaining the concepts, goes through plenty of examples, will even solve homework problems in class, AND reviews material from Calculus I/AP Calculus in case people have forgotten or need a refresh. Her Italian accent is not difficult to understand at all, I loved it. She responds to emails and is very helpful during office hours. She's very understanding when it comes to extensions on homework assignments. Her tests are difficult but if you take notes in class and do the homework (and perhaps some additional practice problems) you should do fine. Just don't slack off.

Jan 2009

He's a very nice person, and I could see him trying. He is very willing to help. It was his first year teaching so it is kind of understandable, but he is not the best teacher out there. You do learn stuff, though. If you can speak Chinese, try asking him in Chinese. It might help. Midterms were managable but the final almost killed me. He doesn't give formulas for midterms, so make sure you know those formulas in the book, even the ones that don't look like you can memorize.

Jan 2009

He goes over the theory during class and also addresses some examples that are always helpful while doing the assignments. The pace of the class is fair. He always asks which problems from the assignments the students have trouble with and goes over them in class, making sure you understand the material. Professor Woit is very nice and very approachable. Some of his assignments have really tough problems, but the exams (midterms and final) are fair and straightforward. In my opinion, Proffesor Woit is an excellent choice for Calculus II.

Jan 2009

Kerzhner is obviously very smart in math, but he is not a great teacher. Maybe its that he's new to teaching. Who knows. The first part of the course, which involved integration and polar and parametric curves, was better than the second half which consisted of sequences and series. He brushed over the second half of the course very quickly and explained very little. He spends a lot of class time doing proofs that most students cant understand or follow or doing random "challenging" problems that he cant finish. There are two assignments due per week. Office hours are just about the only way you can consistently do well on homework. You learn a lot of the material on your own and wont leave the classroom feeling motivated to learn. It is possible to do well, but you have to work hard. All in all, its a lot of work and you don't leave knowing the material well.

Jan 2009

I'll give Jian credit for trying. Every class he was well-prepared and he is extremely talented in math. Really I dislike how fast-paced the class is, but hey, that's just me. The advice I would like to pass on is that if you are not willing to take the time to schedule office hours for more one-on-one time with Jian, you probably should not take this class. He has an accent and he also stutters, so it can get very hard to understand him. Our class started off with 40 students and by the end of the second week, we had merely 10 students. This should indicate the difficulty in understanding what Jian was saying. One-on-one, Jian is actually a very good teacher. He slows down and knows exactly how to help. So if you are ok with simply learning during office hours, then you should be fine.

Dec 2008

Don't choose Professor Woit. Ever. He stutters every word and is difficult to understand and follow in lecture. He also isn't very thorough in his explanations of the material.

Dec 2008

I quite enjoyed Chen-Yun Lin's Calc II class. I mostly disagree with the previous review; I found the pace to be perfectly reasonable until the last few weeks of class. Lectures are a little dry but she's actually got a real sense of humor---you just have to listen very closely or you'll miss the jokes. She's very accessible outside of class, gives generous partial credit on tests and homework and used a very forgiving curve for final grades. All in all, I would certainly recommend Chen-Yun Lin for Calc II.

Dec 2008

Daniela is absolutely amazing -- she's super cute and has a perfectly understandable accent. She is clear and extremely competent at explaining all the concepts, responds to all email questions and gives homework extensions where they're deserved. Her tests are relatively hard, but fair -- she gives you formulas from old classes that you no longer remember, and tells you before hand all the concepts you need. She cancelled the class before Thanksgiving :) and didn't test us on the information taught by the TA (she was giving birth, and so missed class) because it wasn't from her or her husband (another CU math professor who taught the end of the semester). No need to buy the solutions manuals, Daniela gives answers to the suggested problems before each midterm. Also her practice final is very similar to the final! If you study the concepts that are on that (as well as all the major class topics), you'll be fine. Grades from midterms come back in a day or two -- she gets the first midterm grade back for sure before the drop deadline. Daniela is such a gift -- if you're taking Calc II, take it from her. I'd guess that holds true for any other course she teaches.

Dec 2008

For the first few classes, you may not be able to understand Chen-Yun because of her accent, but you'll get used to it eventually. What will continue to annoy you throughout the semester is that she assumes you know more math than a Calculus II student actually knows. She's studying really advanced pure math in graduate school and she'll sometimes go off on a tangent with a proof that relates to what you're learning but goes way over your head and isn't even on the test anyway. Her personality is adorable (she comes to class with her hair in pigtails with fuzzy pink scrunchies) but her pace is really too fast, and I had to review a lot on my own in order to really understand the concepts.

Aug 2008

This is a very straightforward class, and if you have a decent calc foundation (whether through calc I or the AP test), this will be cake. She distills all the book lessons into major points and puts them up on the board. She'll write out all definitions and theories. All new concepts are followed up with numerous examples, which are similar to homework problems (if only slightly simpler). The homework assignments are very, very reasonable (average half an hour to 45 minutes), and they're usually all odd numbered problems, so you can check answers in the back of the book. Midterm difficulty is similar to the homework (which is to say, pretty easy); there are no surprises. The class was split into two main parts: methods of integration and series/sequences. The second part is less intuitive and more annoying, but she usually explains concepts multiple times. She sometimes cancels class due to holidays, but she will always have make up sessions. She's pretty accessible by email and will hold extra office hours before exams. In short, this is probably one of the easiest calc II sessions out there. And you don't have to deal with any incomprehensible accents.

Jul 2008

Excellent instructor. A lot of students find Calc II hard, and it is hard. However, I thought Mingmin did a great job at explaining clearly and with simple words very complicated concepts....like when you get to the Power Series... ;/ Anyway, I highly recommend Mingmin, in case he is teaching when you need to take math. he is a grad student, but I find him way more understandable than any prof so far!

Jan 2008

De Silva is so good! It's almost worth the trek to Barnard at 9:10 to go to her class. She explains topics clearly and concisely and does a TON of examples that really help with the homework and tests. She's also really approachable and won't look down on anyone who asks for clarification during class. De Silva is heartily recommended!

Jan 2008

You will definately leave his class with enough notes to write a textbook. The man knows his stuff and is quite charming. No one should make less than a C+ in this class.

Nov 2007

Wonderful professor! I took Calc II with him and would recommend it to anyone. Everything he does is so fair and he is really there to help you. Showing up to office hours is really helpful if you need help understanding the concepts. He pretty much teaches straight out of the book, but it is still important to go to class because the examples he uses in class are similar to test questions. The averages on his exams were pretty decent, so there was not a heavy curve on the exams. However, he applies a huge curve to grades at the end of the semester. Plus, he speaks English fluently (with a cute British accent) and that is rare in the math department. Definitely take his classes!

Mar 2007

Not only is she a fair grader on the exams, but she weighs homeworks relatively heavily in comparison to the tests, which works to your advantage. WebWorks may be difficult at times, but her problems are generally easy. She is very open to question in class and will never hesitate to help with any problems after class. In addition, she will listen to the class consensus when it comes to moving assignment deadlines if absolutely necessary. I had taken AP Calculus BC in high school and did not need to take this class, but Professor O'Neil made it all the more worthwhile. I would highly recommend her as a teacher. She does not grade the homeworks, so if you have a problem with the grading, take it up with the TAs.

Mar 2007

I chose her based on her reviews and the fact that nothing better seemed available. Having taken only AB and recieved a 5, I took Calc II. I found the pace of the course to be quite quick. The one good (or bad) thing about the class is the weight that hw recieves (~45-50%). My hw's were greatly assisted by the fact that I had a complete answer key from a friend. At the end of the course, I had an 85, which scaled to an A-. I was not pleased with her overall teaching. She was disorganized and would get lost in her own explanations (resulting in explitives). When a student asked a question, the answer would sometimes be "Ummmmm" or "What?" I have a list of priceless quotes that kept me amused in class. Overall, this is a safe bet, but nothing exceptional.

Mar 2007

Professor O'Neil is very nice and you can tell she's really excited about math. I like that she welcomes other student's suggestions on other ways to do problems. However, her class wasn't as stimulating nor as fantastic as some of the other reviewers had said. She went through the material very quickly, taking what was supposed to be an hour and fifteen minute class and packing everything into an hour. There were times where it seemed like she knew her stuff, it was just that she didn't know how to explain it well. It made understanding certain concepts especially hard. She's also not very accessible. If you can't make it to the two hour, once a week time slot, she probably won't schedule another appointment to meet with you.

Mar 2007

It's calc 2, but he manages to make it fun and interesting. His teaching style is a little strange at first, as he writes out every step he does in words as well as math on the board, and he makes a decent amount of mistakes in class. He also gets distracted pretty easily, but he is very knowledgeable and really enjoys math and teaching it. He is a great professor as far as math professors go.

Feb 2007

I took Calc II because Jeff Said happened to teach it, and it turned out to be an excellent decision. Few can teach as clearly and rigorously as Jeff Said. He not only imparted a solid understanding of integrals and series, but I feel he really prepared me for my future math classes at Columbia. Thank you Jeff!

Feb 2007

He was the shiiiizzz. He made sure everyone had the oppurtunity to get an A.

Jan 2007

While Calculus II is really just as hard as everyone says it is, and if you don't have to take it, I wouldn't, Aaron Lauda is the professor to have. He is a genuinely nice guy, and has a perfectly normal accent. The lectures got long and boring sometimes, but if you need help he always willing. do the suggested problems, he takes his midterm and final questions strictly from that pool of questions. advice: make flashcards of the questions, then when you can do a question quickly (because time is short during exams) put it away, and keep working on the remaining problems until you can do them quickly.

Jan 2007

Very good teacher . . explains everything clearly and even writes every word on the board. He is a good professor for a student who enjoys a detailed description on the topic at hand. Very decent grader, and if you have to take Calc try to get in this class

Jan 2007

very sweet old man. you will not learn more than is mandatory for him to teach you, but if youre looking for a calc with not a lot of coursework throughout the semester, a heavy bearing on the final, and a guy who is willing to take any excuse, by all means.

Jan 2007

First off, don't even bother with calc II unless your major requires it. No matter how strong a math student you think you are, Calc II will be very difficult, no doubt about it. Taking this class with Hou does not make this any better. Hou does not speak english very well, and has little sympathy for his students. He teaches at a very fast pace, and gets very irritated when students ask a lot of questions. Eventually I decided to stop going to this class because it made me feel horrible about myself. It is not a stretch to say that his class inspires low self confidence. Very few people in my class seemed to actually understood anything that went on, and many lived at the math help room.

Jan 2007

Aaron Lauda is an amazing professor. He might not be the most engaging guy on Earth, but he's helpful and cool.

Jan 2007

Professor Lauda made Calc II a breeze. I agree with previous reviews that at first he seemed a bit scattered but he quickly shped up and his classes turned out to be clear and informative. Sometimes he gets a little overexcited when the calc we're studying overlaps with physics but his enthusiasm only adds to the lecture and he uis careful not to confuse those who may not particularlybe interested in the physics. He's mad funny, which makes the class enjoyable, and the exams are straight forward, so as long as you have some grasp on what's taught in the lessons you should be fine. I reccommend Lauda to anyone planning to take Calc II

Jan 2007

Seems to be the easiest of Calc II teachers - problem sets and exams very straight forward. Attendance is not necessary for a good grade. Lectures very slow and often boring, but you can tell he's a really smart guy. Non-existant curve, but there's little need.

Jan 2007

Many students find the content of Calculus II to be difficult, so difficulty understanding the material is probably due at least in part to the nature of the material. I found Prof. Hou a good, fair professor. He was neither exceptionally good nor exceptionally bad. Prof. Hou was thorough during his lectures in that he covered example problems of varying difficulty (easy to introduce the topic, difficult when reviewing for an upcoming midterm or final). Some other reviewers have commented on his tendency to leave a problem undone and to tell the class to "finish it on your own." I did not think this occurred frequently. In addition, because of the number and variety of problems we covered during class, he probably couldn't have finished every intricate problem during class. He did provide many opportunities for office hours (some said he was condescending during office hours; I never found him so, so if you're having trouble, don't be afraid to talk to him). I did not have a problem with Prof. Hou's accent, but the problem in communication was that he did not know how much more he knew than did the class. He's a very bright guy, and at times (especially toward the end of the semester with sequences, series and the rest), his explanations were non-intuitive and confusing. There was a very generous curve, and Prof. Hou's grading in general is very fair or lenient. He's definitely a choice to consider, and he's a nice person.

Jan 2007

Professor Lauda does a good job going through the Calc II material presented in the textbook. Every lecture, he presents a topic and works out the example problems from the textbook. He is open to questions and is always willing to put in the extra time. At some times, he can be funny, and as a whole, you cannot do wrong by taking a Calc class with Prof Lauda.

Jan 2007

lauda is the man. his lectures were very very clear and on both midterms all hte problems were either from the homework, suggested homework problems (not required), or from examples from class. i dont see how it is possible to do poorly in this class as long as you go to class, unless you are completely math inept.

Jan 2007

When I walked out of my first lecture with Lauda, I wondered what the heck I had gotten myself into. Lauda is a new professor and had never taught a calc class before, and it showed. He would often make silly mistakes in his lectures and have to erase several lines from the chalkboard. But as the the course continued, he got much more confident and made fewer mistakes, and the class became one of my favorites. Lauda wants people to understand and to like him, and he is sure to go over everything painstakingly until everyone understands. He makes really good notes and is very comfortable addressing questions from the class... so much that it almost seems like high school in its informailty and friendliness. The class is very easy, with no curve, and he is very specific about what he is going to ask on his tests. He also cracks some hysterical nerdy jokes that, surprisingly, make the class very entertaining. Don't hesitate to take Lauda's class, unless you're already really good with Calc II concepts and it seriously bothers you when professors make mistakes. (Otherwise you'll be bored to death as he writes out instructions on EXACTLY how to solve everything, which comes in extremely handy when you're studying.)

Dec 2006

Professor Lauda took a while to get used to, but by the end of the semster I loved him. He gives very easy exams, because he really wants everyone to do well, so there's really no reason for you to get anything less than an A. He will always help you with the homework, which was probably the most difficult part of the course. I was often frustrated, because he wouldn't demonstrate problems that would show up in the homework and sometimes you would have to know little tricks that you couldn't really know, but as long as you work through them, he'll help you.

Dec 2006

I looked foward to going to class on tuesdays and thursday's because of Prof. Oneill's calc II class. Calc II is not an easy topic but the class was run in a light enjoyable manner. In terms of clarity of the subject, Prof Oneill was a little disorganized in her subject and spent more time on proofs than on actual problems but overall she is a grerat person and a fun professor.I attended office hours almost every week and it she explained topics slower and more clear. She counts homework and webworks for 50% of the grade which allows a student to get a good grade even if they perform badly on tests. But her test are not that difficult because she only puts on problems done in class or ones that she can solve without spending time to figure out. Although the homework problems are more difficult, she often has difficulties solving them herself and therefore will not put anything of the sort on a test. Overall, I enjoyed this class very much and I am extremely fond of Prof. Oneill. Take her class!!!!!!

Dec 2006

Professor O'Neil is very smart but cannot teach a class. she is very confusing and if you have not taken an advanced high school calc class before you really should not take this class because you will be really lost. she barely explains anything that is not already in the book. homework counts for a lot and you have to do it correctly, and don't forget to staple it or the really mean TAs will take off points. her tests are easy and don't count for much of your grade. webworks is just about the worst part of this course, START WEBWORKS EARLY! NOT AT 11:30 PM the night before its due. trust me. (she's a nice lady though, don't get me wrong.)

Dec 2006

I took Professor O’Neil’s class because of her generous allotment of points; 40% for Homework, %15 for Webworks and no timed exams (which are also worth 15% each). This seemed like an ideal setting, but quickly turned into a nightmare. Our Webwork assignments were consistently behind the current material covered; therefore the time spent on WW did not reinforce what we were currently learning, but instead wasted our time. The program is very sensitive which can be frustrating. You can literally enter the right answer, but it may not accept it due to syntax error. WW was just one negative of her class. Professor O’Neil herself seemed unprofessional to me and offended me many times by her continuous use of extremely foul language. She was unorganized. Her notes were all over the place, and our understanding was compromised by her inability to read her own notes and explain proofs. She was constantly corrected by very bright students – I hate to think where we would have been with out them! Despite her disorganization, she covered material extremely fast and relied on the pace of students who had taken AP calc and for which the class was merely a refresher. She seemed lazy. She repeatedly left problems unfinished or skipped steps – even in the answer key for our midterms. She also made mistakes often. She did not take responsibility for her actions, and was very inflexible. One example of this was regarding WW. For one assignment, the instructions stated that only certain numbers counted for credit, ie the remainder of the set was practice; however the score incorporated the problems left blank. When asked regarding this, she inquired the people at WW, and returned to us with the comment “Yeah, I don’t know what happened to WW, but those do count.” When asked if she would make an allowance, she said “Sorry, that will be the one you drop.” This did not happen to me personally as I did all of the problems, but other students were penalized for following directions set forth. To me, this is unacceptable. She left at home or lost her notes for the final exam review and did not furnish us with a practice final, when she had given us practice midterms prior. I know this is not a requirement, however due to the fact that she was unprepared for the final review, one would think she would make an effort to ensure that we succeeded. Other negatives: She was not willing to meet with students outside of class and when asked for help, said to either come early to class or directed her students to the Math Help room. She did not seem to have control of her TA’s and when asked to correct the situation (they claimed they didn’t have office hours when we needed them to help us & never returned homework in time for exams), said that there was nothing she could do. She did not hide her distaste for certain students who asked repeated questions and made other students seem ignorant when they asked a simple or obvious question. Having said all of the above, Professor O’Neil is yielding when pushed. She did give extra points on homework when asked and was willing to offer suggestions on homework problems if you were able to come early to class. Her main flaw is that she is not forthcoming in her willingness to help students. Unfortunately, this comes across as a bad attitude and makes a bad impression on her ability as a professor. She may seem to be the best teacher in the world to Freshmen whose only experience were rigid Math professors, but to others she is the worst instructor one could possibly have. Professor O’Neil is a bright woman and may be very proficient in her own ability and understanding of Calculus and Higher Math, however she is not a good professor/teacher and does not reflect well on the caliber of instruction that Columbia University offers.

Nov 2006

She is a pretty cool person, and at first it may seem that she is a good teacher. Now, I myself did well in previous calculus classes, but as soon as I got here everything got out of hand. She goes ridiculously fast, and if you don't do follow along closely you could get lost, and thats it. You have to do the homework, they make up 40% of the grade. Midterms are relatively easy, if you know the work, but if like me you have a little trouble grasping the material, you have to study and review the review sheet she hands out carefully. Shes a cool cat, but shes probably not that greatest teacher of Calculus II that there is in all of Columbia and Barnard.

Nov 2006

Please take this advice to heart: RUN!! Catherine O'Neil is not the best calc teacher at Columbia. She may speak English, but she seems lazy and unorganized to me. She has to rely on us to correct her mistakes and would teach us something wrong if we didn't already know Calculus. Her workload is unreal - sure, she may count homeworks for most of the grade, but she assigns webworks which is the biggest waste of time. Don't take her class if you want to learn Calculus.

Nov 2006

I had this Sean Paul last year and remember him mainly as the worst professor I've had so far. Maybe it was just the material, but I don't think so. If you took either AP exam I would recommend just taking calc III and getting the credit for Calc II. Most of the crap you learn in Calc II you've learned already, Sean Paul just feels it's his job to trick students with wild exceptions to common formulas.

Nov 2006

Lauda's a nice guy. If you have calc background, this class will be cake. The problem sets aren't bad at all, and the midterms and final are completely comprised of problems you've done on the problem sets. the lectures can get boring and he takes most of his notes from the book, so since i can read faster than lauda can put notes on the board, it was just more efficient not to go to class. if you have a question about a problem set though, and you ask him about it in class, he'll help you out and put some of it on the board. i suggest lauda for calc II.

Nov 2006

This class was super easy, but only because she's a great professor. She puts great notes on the board - clear and concise. She's also really nice and helpful if you decided to go to her office hours.

Nov 2006

I only took the course as a refresher to Calc II thinking I would go in and get an easy A. If you are thinking the same, don't take Hou. He has an adorable accent, but other than that I recommend staying away. He tends to skip over things he thinks we should know when doing examples or, better yet, pulls a random number while saying "I choose this number because I know it works." I've had worse math teachers and he is still understandable and fairly easy to follow, he just doesn't exactly make it that easy on us. He also isnt very approachable. The language barrier certainly has something to do with it but in my opinion he just doesn't give off a friendly air. For example when he went over a midterm and people asked questions about it, he seemed visibly perturbed. Again, if you are looking for an easy A, just bite the bullet and take Calc III. If you have not yet taken Calc II then Hou isnt a BAD teacher, you just must be prepared to work.

Nov 2006

Very nice guy. Knows his stuff. No accent. The ocassional spelling mistake. Reasonable workload. Quick and painless math.

Nov 2006

Professor Lauda is a good lecturer. He goes at a reasonable pace and covers what you need to know. You can get away with getting a good grade even if you don't go to his lecture. After explaining the concept/theorem/formula a couple of examples follow. He tries to be funny at times. Maybe you won't laugh at his jokes but you'll laugh at him for trying. Everything taught at the lecture is right out of the book. But go to his class because he sometimes does homework problems by the end of the class or gives hints on how to do "hard" problems. There is a lot of note taking involved. One of the things that pissed me off at the beginning of the course was the fact that he writes every single step on the board. For example, he writes down "Today we will use trig identities to integrate..." or "we don't have 2x in the integrand, so let's try..." or "you might want to..." Once you get used to it, you don't even notice this anymore. Overall, take his class. It's worth it.

Nov 2006

The course is pretty straight forward, and Lauda is a pretty good teacher. Most of what he teaches comes straight from the text book, but i attended all the lectures because he simplifies some of the concepts and is good at answering questions. Class can be a bit tough but he's a good teacher.

Nov 2006

This semester was prof. lauda's first teaching job at columbia, but he was still able to teach systematically. unlike the other sections, lauda's classes never had to use webworks-making life much less annoying when the whole class has the same homework assignment. he spoke english perfectly (except for when he used words like gnarly and wimpy :)), so he was really clear, as were his lessons. he's younger, but for lauda that didnt translate as "i feel like i need to assert my authority to compensate for my closeness in age to you goes so ill fail you." instead, it was like, "i understand what it is to be in college," so if u dont do one homework, ill drop it. as a teacher, he achieved a good balance between applications and examples, although at the beginning, he would make careless errors, and that was a little annoying. he's really approachable, and if you have problems with the homework, hes so willing to help. take him if you can - unfortunately for everyone taking calc ii next sem., he's not teaching it.

Nov 2006

Prof. Lauda is probably one of the best Calc teachers you can find at Columbia, he's American (a rare breed in Columbia's Calc classes), AND teaches remarkably well. His style is a very laid back, easy going approach to each new subject, yet the class doesn't screech to a halt (until one of his numerous jokes bomb, which is entertainment in itself). He explains everything in simple terms and if you put honest effort into the homework and make sure you get all the basics, the midterms and final are a piece of cake (Hint: The problems are all from homework, suggested problems, and class problems). Oh and NO WEBWORKS!!!! (Took the class once before and dropped it due to a terrible terrible teacher, lack of opportunities to switch, and webworks which are a pain in the ass)

Nov 2006

Pretty intelligent, but makes lots of little mistakes in class. The midterms and the final come straight from homework problems and extra exercise problems that he assigns. I got an A- on his exam without going to class, and by just studying the assigned problems. Another reason I didn't have to go to class was that he teaches straight out of the book. It almost seems like he's reading out of it, because he says the same things as is written in the book and uses the exact same examples. Take him if you want an easy A, but not if you really want to learn Calculus in depth.

Nov 2006

This man is a genius, No question about it. But despite the fact that he is a genius, I do not feel I learn much from going to the class. I come out of class more confused than when I came in and sometimes I feel like he cannot explain things fully. Some quotes from him are "Don't ask how I got that, I just know it" , "No more examples you would not understand anyway." , "As you can see the Answer is very complicated so you can do it on your own" and "Well, you can't actually finish the problem so forget what I just taught you". Basically I would advise not taking the class with him unless you are very good at teaching yourself from a book and are Very VERY proficient in calculus. Besides lectures he gives a lot of partial credit and is truly a brilliant nice guy, just not a very good professor.

Nov 2006

Cathy O'Neil is awesome!!! PICK HER FOR CALC II!!! She will make you laugh even if the double webworks make you cry. She is probably the most animated math professor in the whole department. Her class is actually interesting. She knows who you are so you feel compelled to show up and pay attention. She will bake you cookies, yell at disgusting problems, and encourage people to solve the problems. Her husband subs for her and her kids are really cute. You will definitely walk out liking Calc II- and tell all your friends to take this course. Cool facts: Cathy is so cool she actually reads her culpa reviews...she even knows that she can write one herself....hmmm... Cathy is normal: "This problem took 2 law in order episodes to work out." All in all- enjoy.

Nov 2006

Professor Lauda is an incredible teacher, and is definitely the best math professor I've had at Columbia so far. He has a great sense of humor, and explains how the material being taught can be applicable to real life. Additionaly, his exams are not very difficult, and almost everyone does well.

Nov 2006

Professor Lauda is a young new professor. He's really amazing, very organized, and really wants you to understand all the material. In addition, he's really fun and quirky, making the normal 75 minute class a little more bearable.

Nov 2006

Aaron Lauda is one of the sweetest teachers ever! He has a great personality and is always happy, and best of all he genuinely cares about his students. His lectures go at a moderate pace, but he is always willing to stop to answer questions. Just be prepared he does make a few mistakes each class. Other than that his exams are fair and as long as you do the homework you will be okay. I definitely recommend you get him if you can!

Nov 2006

As far as the professors in the math depatment go, you could do worse than Xinyi. His english is fairly understandable and he focuses on providing examples to the class rather than just going through theory. He is also fairly responsive to questions. On the downside, his only office hours were the 40 minutes prior to one of the class periods so that there wasn't much time to ask him questions outside of class. It is his first semester teaching so I presume that there will be improvement in the future, and Xinyi is interested in improving his teaching style. He basically teaches straight from the book, but periodical quizzes ensure that you will have to show up to class sometimes.

Nov 2006

He is the greatest professor ever, and his midterms are taken directly from the homework and the suggested problems. He also does a great job of relating the material he's teaching to real life. And he has a great sense of humor. He's the greatest math professor I've had at Columbia so far.

Jul 2006

Professor O'Neil is one of the best, smartest, nicest, most all-around wonderful professors in the whole college. I started hating math in first grade and continued hating it with a passion (and barely understanding it) right up until I took her class. Don't ask me how, but she somehow manages to take the "boring" and the "difficult" right out of the accursed subject! She's prepared, organized, and full of enthusiasm. If you're having trouble in the class, go to her office hours. No matter how stupid you think your question is she'll sit with you and explain it until you understand. Note: This is NOT an easy class. She goes very quickly and assigns a lot of homework. The majority of your grade will be based on the homework, so make sure you do a good job (although if you want to learn the math, doing the homework is rather advisable anyway.) If you can take her class, count yourself lucky to have such a good teacher!

May 2006

Natasa is very fair, very smart, and very nice. When it comes to her teaching ability, however, she is mediocre at best. She is, however, very approachable and wants to give you a good grade.

May 2006

I took calc 1 with Prof Stein, and this term he seems to have made the exams less of a nightmare. Professor Stein is a very good teacher who teaches the subject very thoroughly. If you are taking this just for the grade, and will not use the knowledge in other classes, then avoid (I am sure there are easier graders out there). If you actually need to gain the knowledge and techniques in the class, then I would recommend him

May 2006

Considering that the material is difficult to grasp, this is a very good professor. He is very reasonable and approachable. Get a tutor if you want to ace things...

Apr 2006

Dr. Stein is one of the best math professors I've had. His lectures are very clear and usually entertaining. He does a good job of deriving the various techniques and proving the theoretical aspects of the material without getting bogged down in mathematical minutiae. He's also articulate and thinks quickly on his feet, so ask questions during and after class - you'll generally get good explanations as well as pointers in terms of how to develop an intuition for applying the different techniques to homework and exam problems. Dr. Stein is a pretty cool guy and has an acerbic wit (which he will occassionally direct at students).

Apr 2006

great professor. THE BEST FRIGGIN MATH PROFESSOR AT COLUMBIA/BARNARD! she speaks english and it's understandable! i highly recommend her as a professor. she really seems to care about her students and whether they understand the material or not. the material is hard but she explains it pretty well. i suck at math but she made it a lot more enjoyable. very approachable and helpful.

Apr 2006

Even I had read horrible things about him, I was one naive freshman who though I'd be fine. NO! Don't take him unless you taken BC. The first few weeks are not that bad, but then no on has no clue of what is going on.

Mar 2006

So here's the thing, Prof Sesum is a nice person and she's very smart. The problem is that she works way too quickly. When you ask her to slow down, she will but even that is too fast. The class is still copying down example 1 while she's almost done with example 2. She just tends to skip writing down little steps which isn't a big deal if you've been doing this for a long time but for someone who isn't a math major but just likes calculus and likes writing down all the little steps, this can get confusing. Overall, you really need to know your stuff to sit through her class and keep up with what she's doing.

Feb 2006

Troels is a very funny man with strage quirks. He tells students "don't spend more than 10 minutes on the hw. If it takes longer, don't do it." He also doesn't want homework to take more than one page of paper. He is a very cute man but a terrible teacher. Most of what he does in class you never need to know. Only take this class if you have done the material before. If you have not, stay far far way because the final is 100% of the grade, no joke. I took BC in HS, got a 5, and just took the class to get an easy A, which I did. But do NOT take this class if you have to learn the material because it will be hard. Overall, not reccommended for newcomers. It's not worth to stress out about a final this much.

Jan 2006

Julius is a professor who really cares about his students. He comes to lecture prepared with notes and if you pay attention, you'll have a little textbook by the end of the semester. However, don't expect to understand everything he puts on the board. He's very good to you if you go to office hours. Don't expect it to be a breeze even if you have taken Calculus BC in high school. The second exam is what kills grades. Most of the class seemed to end up with grades in the B+ range, even though the curve was fairly generous. Do all of the homework, even the odd ones, and do all of the webworks if you want an A.

Jan 2006

I have to start out by saying that Nels is a very good teacher. His lectures are easy to follow, he explains things well, and he does a bunch of examples. The one thing I didn't like, and it was pretty minor, about his lectures is that he tends to write in math symbols. I'd be copying down down and not looking at the board, and then I'd look up and there'd be tons of gibberish symbols. If you learn, or happen to know, those symbols, it probably won't bother you. His tests are hard. Our first midterm had an average of 80%, and he said that was too high. The average of the next midterm was like a 67% or something, and he said he could live with that. He thinks math tests should be hard, and his are. His final was a killer (or at least it was for me, but I'm an English major fulfilling science requirements). He teaches well, and there was a nice curve at the end. I would recommend Nels, but if you take his class, just know the tests will be hard.

Jan 2006

Damn this class was such a mistake. For someone that had a 4 on the AP BC exam, this class was quite boring--and the final a killer, particularly because none of the easy midterms get calculated into the grade. Awful awful experience. Strange too, never before did I have a teacher/professor tell me to not look in the book or use more than one sheet of paper for an assignment.

Dec 2005

This teacher is a good lecturer if you need someone who writes down every single thing he says. He takes steps gradually, which is good for some, but can be monotonous. His test are pretty fair. Problem set due every single Friday at noon, basically making all Thursday nights wasted on calc.

Nov 2005

On the first day of class he tells you that he doesn't want you to use more than one sheet of paper for the h.w., somewhere in the middle of the semester, when you bug him about midterms, he'll ask you if a week from today works for you. He's very chill, students stroll in late or not at all. If you can pay attention to him, you don't need to read the txtbk or even own it, because he tells you all the (minimal) stuff you need to know.

Sep 2005

Sean is one crazy professor. Seriously, if you didn't take BC Calc in high school, don't even consider this class an option. After the first couple lectures, I thought I could make it, but when he starts going off into these wild proofs and random subjects in later lectures, you realize you'll be doomed if you stick through it. He gets some sort of perverse pleasure out of the stuff he does, because he's constantly doing this giggle at the board, as if to say "HA they'll never understand it if i do THIS..." He also expects you to know a ton of identities and stuff from the first class onward. In all, I'd say unless you're EXTREMELY comfortable with the subject matter from BC calc, dont even bother with SP's class. I dropped into calc 1, which is insanely easy, but you can take calc 3 if you get a C or better in 1, therefore completely avoiding calc 2. oh, someone actually screamed "SLOW DOWN!!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!?! SLOWWW DOWWWNNN" in the last lecture of Sean's class I went to...

Sep 2005

Prof. Ross is a great teacher. He knows the material and genuinely wants you to do well. The material is hard, especially if you haven't been exposed to Calculus before and even if you have, expect to spend a LOT of time doing the homework and webworks. Some of the Webworks did bring tears to my eyes and some of the homework problems were impossible (and I have no idea why he would assign those impossible ones at the end of the sections but he does). The midterms were fairly easy, most of the problems aren't as hard as the webworks but there are always one or 2 that are a bit difficult; the important point is to not focus tooo tooo much on one type of problem and completely overlook others that you need to know. Plan to spend lots of time in the helproom (I sure did, about once a week for a couple of hours) but definitely take advantage of the first midterm since it tends to be a bit easier than the second one. Pretty decent curve, especially in Calc 2. Overrall he's a great Prof. and you just have to deal with the class. Take him, he's probably the best out there.

Sep 2005

It's basically feast or famine, you either get the stuff that Hou teaches or not. I did great in Calc II and then bombed Calc III, which says a lot. Going to class helps somewhat, but doing his problem sets and practice tests helps the most. Basically his tests are the hardest questions from the practice tests and problem sets, so if you decide to go to only a few classes, go to the ones that he shows you how to do the practice tests. If you know how to do the practices, then you'll do fine.

Aug 2005

This professor is by far the nicest professor in the entire department. He cares about his students and is always trying to make them stress less. The class itself is kind of boring and really hard.

Jun 2005

Best math professor/teacher ive had. really knows how to relate to his students. He is incredibly young...graduated from princeton in 02 and is already close to having his phd...hes brilliant and teaches a lot. hell heckle you in class and make sure youre following, but it helps;

May 2005

I was really worried about taking this math class. I had heard a lot of bad things about the math department. The fact that this ended up being my favorite class had a lot to do with Alex. He's a great teacher and for those of you out there like me that need someone to explain math to you, you should definitely take this class. Alex really cares about his students and is passionate about what he is teaching. Also, I have to agree with all the reviews before me- he's adorable. I definitely had a crush on him all semester and I am sure he noticed- how embarressing! o well, it was a great class, and I highly recommend taking it.

Apr 2005

Alex is such a sweet guy... You would never expect a Math teacher to be so charismatic and funny... but thats him... He has a load of energy and a great personality. He is extremely approachable and an overall great guy. Do the homework, go to class, and ask for help when needed... study... but the curve is pretty nice... I would definitely recommend taking his class

Apr 2005

Definitely a good choice for calculus. He really wants his students to understand the material, and can explain things well. Also, he only teaches the stuff you have to know for the homework and tests, so classtime is never wasted. His grading is very generous and fair, which means that if you go to class and do the homework, even if you dont really understand the material, your grade will be at least a B, possibly even an A.

Apr 2005

He's a pretty standard math teacher, though not so engaging with the lectures. The tests given are slightly on the difficult side, though entirely doable if you know the stuff. The biggest thing I had a problem with is webworks, though its really such a small part of your final grade.

Jan 2005

Neither excellent, nor awful. Does not speak clear English, but that is to be somewhat expected in the math dept. Sometimes book homeworks can be confusing. He's not too bad, but I wouldn't highly recommend him either.

Jan 2005

Absolutely awful professor. I would strongly recommend that you not take this course. He is extremely confusing and difficult to understand. He cannot explain anything and he shows no passion in teaching. IThe class was much harder than it should have been. The TA or whoever grades the tests and homework has no compassion or sympathy. If you need to take this class for any reason, take it with another professor. If you need to take this class with Peter Bank, find a really good tutor and don't even bother going to class.

Jan 2005

I've had teachers with accents before and they've been fine professors, so I don't think people can use his accent as an excuse (even though it is terribly thick). I don't feel like he cared how his students did. He came in every class and wrote on the board for the duration with minimum explanation. As said in some of the other reviews, he often grew annoyed when students asked him a question, and merely repeated what he had just said, albeit in an angrier tone, often while repeatedly pointing to what he wrote on the board. Maybe in this case his English is to blame; in one memorable instance he said something along the lines of "I'm sorry, my English isn't too good. If you have any questions, just refer to the book," and that is exactly what most of the class had to do throughout the course. That's not the kind of quality I want out of a professor at Columbia. I might have spent my time better reading a chapter of the book during every class rather than trying to learn from him. I scored a 5 on the calc AB AP test, but his class made me forget that I was ever good in Math or that I ever enjoyed it. I would highly recommend avoiding Hou if at all possible, and the overwhelming majority of people I knew in the class would suggest the same.

Jan 2005

Zuoliang Hou is clearly a very intelligent man who thoroughly understands the material that he is teaching. His problem is that he teaches as if the class is as knowledgeable as he is, which means that he breezes through everything, failing to provide adequate explanation and examples. If one doesn't read the corresponding chapter in the textbook and fully understand it prior to coming to class, he or she will probably not understand the lecture. In my personal experience, the textbook was a far greater help than the instructor. In addition to his failure to explain the material, he will get visibly upset when a student doesn't understand a concept. Questions in class are met with contempt and explanations that rehash something he just said. Since it clearly didn't get the point across the first time, repeating it isn't going to do any good. The class has little to no idea how he arrives at a final grade. While we are given a rubrik, stating that 20% is homework, 40% is the two midterms, and 40% is the final, there are still many things left unexplained. Students are unaware how WebWork is factored into the homework grade, if at all. What's more concerning is how the midterms and the final are curved, which is never mentioned. If one were to ask him about a curve, he becomes defensive. Also, he has a very thick accent and is just very hard to understand. This clearly isn't his fault, but it does limit his own ability to explain himself. This adds to the apparent frustration he displays over being asked questions, as I mentioned above. Avoid this instructor if at all possible.

Jan 2005

Jorgensen is an easy-going, nice guy, who clearly has a great Math mind. Unfortunately, these components do not make a good Math teacher. I was unable to understand the majority of what he taught in class. He is disorganized in his teaching, often alternating between topics in the same class. I was forced to teach the entire course to myself from the textbook. If you can do this, you should be able to get an A in the class. He gives about two homework problems per class (a relatively light workload) and the tests are largely derived from these problems (there are exceptions though!) He has very little structure to his class, does not do Webworks (or anything involving a computer including e-mail), and often spends a lot of time on topics that ultimately do not appear on exams. He gave the impression in class that as long as you do well on the homeworks, you can get a decent grade in the class. I was able to do well on the tests by studying the textbook. Bottom Line: If you're capable of teaching the entire course to yourself from the textbook, don't want to spend too much time in class,and want a light workload, take this class. If you're the kind of person who wants a structured class with clear lesson plans etc., DO NOT TAKE THIS CLASS.

Jan 2005

jeff said is the man - if you have the chance to get him for calculus 2 (all he teaches), then go for it - he always tries to help your grade and help you learn the material

Jan 2005

JEFFREY is the nicest guy ever, and he is funny, and makes jokes and makes class as fun as it could possibly be by interacting with the students who take it seriously enough to come to class. you dont have to go, he wont penalize you for late homework assignments, and he doesnt want to screw you over by giving you a bad grade if you at least try. i guess if you are a serious calc student and are planning on majoring in math or physics and you want to get down to business, this isnt necesarily the best class, but rather a relaxed environment in which you take the material at your own pace... he gives you a practice test that lays out what you need to know for the exams, and i think he's cancelling the webwork for the course also... he's from south africa, so he speaks good english and has some good stories... and he even invited us all out to the west end after our final to chat. he's a nice guy, and i got an A+ so he's not out to prove anything about his authority or anything, if that makes sense... good luck !!! take JEFFREY SAID! HE'S THE BEST,

Dec 2004

He's got a thick accent...and he teaches DIRECTLY from the textbook. He actually manages to make it quite confusing. He is well intentioned though; he encourages his students to ask questions and come to his office hours. Sadly, he just can't teach which resulted in me not going to class for the last month. If you are ok at teaching yourself most of the material (and you have somewhat of a background in this stuff...mainly, you took BC Calc in high school) you should be alright. He curves well. It's frustrating going through the semester though. There are definitely better options than Cao.

Dec 2004

Cao's accent is REALLY hard to understand at first but you get used to it after a while. He teaches a lot using theorems which I found not helpful and does not do many examples in class. He has minimal and inconvenient office hours. I would not take this class without a pretty strong calculus background because he assumes that you know all of calc I really well. His midterms are really hard but the final isn't nearly as bad. He grades on a huge weird curving system at the end and it is pretty generous.

Dec 2004

Good class, well explained, straightfoward. He knows and explains how the equations are derived and although it may seem a little boring he doesn't test on the derivations which is nice - if you are into that, pay attention and learn it, it can't hurt, but if not, you don't have to worry about being tested on it. If you go to class, do the webwork a few days in advance of when it is due so you have time to go to the Math Help Room, do the homework (note: student solutions manual in Math Library very helpful) do some practice problems in the book and do every review problem he gives you, you will be fine. Plus, some of the questions on his tests are directly from the book or from the review problems.

Dec 2004

What can I say? I chose him because he was the only prof available that spoke English. I ended up not going to class, so it didn't matter anyway. As far as math professors go, he was an alright guy, and if you need to go to class to learn the materia, he explains things pretty well. . The second midterm and especially the final are hard to study for; they're insane "trick" questions. You don't have to get them all, though, to get an A; he curves to a B on the tests, no matter how bad the students do. Why oh why do Calc II professors have to give Webworks? I hate them so. In fact, one time I spent hours trying to figure out a single problem, only to find out later that the problem was messed up!

Dec 2004

Goldfeld speaks fluent English and I hear that that is a rarity in the Math department. I have no idea how to rate Goldfeld compared to other math teachers, but just be prepared to come to class, take notes, and then come back to your room and teach yourself the material. The examples done in class are way easier than those on the homework. However, if you do all of the assigned work, you should be very prepared for the test. The tests are harder, but, then again, everything is curved. Goldfeld is a nice guy though and very willing to meet up and help you. If you're going to take Calc II (it's hard!), take it with Goldfeld. The class is doable if you make it a priority.

Dec 2004

A pretty fair, although challenging, professor. His lectures were pretty hard to understand, and you don't necessarily have to go to them; he even said that as long as you did the homework, he didn't care if you didn't go to class. So basically, he taught out of the book. A very friendly guy, and he responded to emails quite quickly. He also grades very quickly, so that's a plus. There's also a great curve.

Dec 2004

His inability to teach notwithstanding, Cao is the perfect professor for Calculus II. Let's face it, few (if any) professors in the math department teach well, but Cao' s tremendous curve and the fact that he gives lots of hints about what will be on exams more than makes up for this. I recommend attending class. You will be bored and most of the things he does (the man loves writing out proofs, though they're irrelevant to exam material) will be pointless, but he will often solve homework problems in class, give important information about exam questions, and might even teach you a few things. He gave me an A, and I am not the brightest calc student, nor did I work very hard.

Dec 2004

Do not take this man for calculus 2, in fact try to avoid cal 2 if possible, you do not want to suffer through its horrors, and this is coming from an seas student who loves math, but cal 2 is horrible, but if you must DO NOT TAKE ZOULUANG HOU

Dec 2004

He has an accent, which you can get used to after awhile. Handwriting is kinda bad. He will take the time to explain things to you that you don't get but the thing is he can't teach well to begin with. I don't think it's his fault really. He uses examples from the book so there is really no point in going to class at all. His midterms are horrible. I mean really bad. You will fail. We have like the lowest class avg out of all the calc II classes. Do not take this class unless you are an ace at calc.

Dec 2004

I would be able to review him better if I could have understood what he was saying. Horrible accent. Lectures were pointless, very low attendance could show for this. No teaching ever happened, just read the book and find a tutor.

Nov 2004

Wow. I would have to agree that Jeffrey, albeit only a graduate student, is one of the best math professors. After finishing up Calc II with him, I must say, he cares about every single student in the class. He makes jokes (they're corny, but still make you smile) all the time in class; he's got some great little stories. So saying, if you wanna take Calc II, get into this class as fast as you can.

Nov 2004

Jeffrey Said is a great professor. He clearly has an exceptional command of the material because when he walks into class he glances at the text and is able to teach full lessons. He is very reasonable about homework and tests. From what I see his philosophy is "if you do well on the tests, you clearly know the material well, which is the goal of my class". This means that if you are not big on doing homework he will take care of you. On the other hand if you get nervous doing tests and sometimes underperform, he will take care of you "if you do all of your homework and put forth a noticable effort". He makes jokes all of the time during class and also offers a tremendous amount of time for extra help. Jeffrey Said wants his students to learn math. That is the bottom line. I don't know what more one could ask for.

Nov 2004

Funny, entertaining (the infamous laugh), nice, approachable, willing to help, clear lectures, good curve on midterms (just be sure to study the book, not webworks), speaks English perfectly, highly recommended!

Nov 2004

A great, great guy. He really saved my life in this class. Unlike so many professors who just don't care, Jeff truly WANTS each of his students to do well in the class, and he will do everything he can to make sure that happens. So, if you're dead set on taking this class (or are an engineer or math major) I seriously suggest you get into Jeff's class. However, if you have already fulfilled your math requirements, and are just taking this class for the hell of it, really make sure it's what you want to do...it's NOTHING like Calculus I, and you might regret taking it.

Nov 2004

If you really enjoy learning Calculus from a textbook and don't expect anything out of lectures, Cao is the professor for you. Like many profs in the math department, his comand of english is not spectacular, but I could forgive his pronunciation of l'hopital's rule as "robtuss" rule if his lectures were at all worthwhile. He just copies the textbook onto the board, and even giggling when he says "eekals" or "cosecanta thetar" can't relieve the boredom that ensues. On the more postive note- if you don't mind learning calculus on your own, his 2 midterms are reasonable, and you don't have to go to lectures.

Sep 2004

Troels is a jovial, English-speaking, cheery man. He loves math and is very low key about his classes. If you have taken calc before and didn't do that well, this is your best option for a math at Columbia. Most teachers tend not to speak any English and assign numerous web works problem sets. Troels only gives 2-3 problems a night and if you ask him not to give you homework, he will agree; But youll want to do the homework as that is what his tests are based on. He doesnt really have a teaching plan or grading plan, so make sure he knows who you are and likes you. The tests are basically very fair, but he usually throws one problem at you that you will not be able to do. don't fear because he always says if you got 100 you shouldnt be in the class. he expects people to make mistakes, especially in calc 1. the final exam is extremely fair and basically based on the other tests and the problems he does in class (which usually come straight from the book). Final grades are largely based on the completion of all the homeworks and the final.

Sep 2004

Excellent teacher. I took this class over the summer, which meant that we had less time to cover the same material. Once or twice it felt like he was rushing through a topic to get to the next (more advanced) ones, but over all I found that his pacing was perfect. He's a funny guy (I thought, anyway), and sometimes tries to insert a bit of Philosophical Wisdom by telling us stories about his childhood. But he's a get-down-to-business-now kind of guy, and generally doesn't waste any time getting right into the day's lesson. In other words, He reviews the previous day's material only enough to refresh your memory, not to teach it over again. (If my tone is a bit ambiguous, I'm saying this is a good thing.) Radu is very good about explaining concepts in a way that everyone could understand. If people look confused, he'll go through it again a bit slower, but I think his normal pace of teaching is a bit on the quicker side. (Personal note: I actually prefer this to the slow "repeat and review redundantly until you drop" style some professors like to use.) Any questions on the homework were cleared up after asking him to explain the problems on the board. He's actually a grad student, as the previous reviewer mentioned, but I highly recommend taking his classes.

Jun 2004

I think that Jeffry Phan is a great teacher. His lectures were logical and easy to follow. He has a sense of humor, which helps. Most of all, I appreciated his fearless ability to work out problems thrown at him by students in class on the fly.

May 2004

Radu is a uniquely dedicated teacher. He designs his lectures and examples to illustrate exactly what he believes is important, and these very points are what is tested on. He really wants to see his students do well. In addition, he is always available in the Math Help Room for assistance outside of class.

May 2004

Dorian has a...different sense of humor. You laugh because he says some pretty funny stuff, but also sometimes just because of the face he makes. He gives a LOT of notes, which are very helpful. You can understand him perfectly, which is a rare case in the math department here. His exams are challenging yet very straightforward. Study a lot and you'll get an A.

May 2004

Jeffrey Said is definitley one of the nicest instructors that I have had here in Columbia. His teaching is clear and straightforward and his exams are straight out of the lectures and from homework assignments. No problems on the final were something we havent seen before. I highly recommend him to anyone looking to take a class with him

May 2004

Funny little man who is a decent teacher. Sometimes he likes to go into tangents, and doesnt always explain things that well, but overall...a good teacher. I mean, at least his English is understandable.

Apr 2004

I thought Alp was a great teacher. He is very knowledgable, he can communicate really well (unlike most professors in the math dept.) and he is higly organized. On the other hand, his exams and problem sets are REALLY hard, expect to spend lots of time on problem sets and make sure you study for the exams, or you can be sure that you will flunk. On the other hand, because everybody does bad on the exams, the curve makes it up for it. Takes his class only if you want to master the stuff. If you arent interested in calc and only taking it for credit or you want something easy-going and laid-back, take Zhang's class.

Feb 2004

Not an easy class, by any stretch of the imagination. But well, well worth it. It's the first time I've come out of a math course feeling secure on the material. This is due to the fact that Jeff is one of the better teachers at Columbia. Nice guy, excellent teacher; he has high standards, but rewards you if you are putting in the effort. If you want an easy A, don't take this class - if you want to learn math, go for it. It's enjoyable.

Jan 2004

Shou-Wu is definitely a character, and his class is very painless. He's superflexible, sometimes funny, and gives very little work. The midterms and final were very straightforward and not too difficult. He also lets you out early every day. It's still calc, so it's not necessarily fun, but he makes it bearable.

Jan 2004

This class is horrible. Alyurov is a mean-spirited professor who seems to care more about proving his students wrong than helping them understand what is right. He is uncomfortable in one-on-one settings, and much prefers you to bring your questions somewhere else. His grading is completely arbitrary; I had absolutely no idea how I was doing until I got my grade. Avoid his class at all costs.

Dec 2003

Not bad at all. His lectures are clear and straightforward, though his examples in class are much much easier than those you see on the midterms and final exams. Also, he sometimes goes pretty slowly, so you don't cover the homework material during class, effectively forcing you to teach yourself. The workload's not too bad, homework each week, 2 midterms, 1 final. However, the webworks sometimes takes forever depending on the week. For the most part, a pretty good teacher. Plus, he can speak English, which is saying something.

Dec 2003

In the first class he'll tell you how to pronounce his last name. (It rhymes with 'king-kong' not 'gang.' ) Anyway, he does have an accent like most math teachers but it's not that bad and you'll get used to it quickly. For example, he pronounces 'secant-squared-theta' as 'seekene-squayah-seta.' He is a genius and is very nice. He cut the webwork for our class in half because we complained to him that it was too hard. He won't notice if you don't go to class but you have to go to get the homework problems in the textbook which he assigns at the end of class. You can either call somebody or just show up for the last few minutes if you really don't wanna go. Also, he often ends class as early as half an hour before the end of class. He pretty much teaches with examples and finishes when he's done covering the material. If you don't understand something, read the textbook. I actually suggest reading the section that will be covered before class. He is very open to questions. One more thing, don't let him catch you leaving class in the middle. There's not much he can do but he gets very offended and you will sit back down very embarrassed. So if you come to class, plan to stay there till the end.

Dec 2003

I really don't see where these other reviews are coming from. Are they talking about the same professor? Sho Wu Zhang is useless. He is disorganized and unintelligible. I also disagree that he is a genius - he often would make simple mistakes early on in problems that he would need to go back and fix, confusing the class and wasting our time. If you want a professor who will bring the material to life, do not take Sho-Wu Zhang's class. Overall, he is an awful professor.

Dec 2003

Shou-Wu knows his stuff and has a much more bearable accent than many other profs in the math dept. His lectures are informative, at times amusing, and generally more helpful than the text, though I would agree that he lost some clarity near the end. He's easy to approach and very flexible (he cut the webworks in half when students complained, and points given on exams can be easily contested). Based on my peers' complaints of their own calc sections, I'd say Zhang is the best way to go when he's available.

Dec 2003

A wonderful, likable professor. Trying to understand his English, however, is a challenge in itself. Once you do, you realize that the man himself is a math genius, a flexble professor, and throws all sorts of corny references and jokes. And when he realizes that no one gets them, it only gets funnier when he tries to salvage them. In beginning of the course, his lectures helped a lot, but towards the end as the material became more complex, he started getting harder and harder to understand. I eventually skipped a few classes and learned right out of the book, and it worked out just fine.

Dec 2003

Lawrence Hon is the most helpful TA in the math department. I had a problem with my homework so I went to his office hours and his explanation was crystal clear. he even offered to help me via email and phone. I can count on him at any time because it seems as if he never sleeps. Anyway, go to his office hours. He is superb!!!!

Nov 2003

Alyurov is really just a big softie. Sure, the first class was jarring, seeing a guy in suspenders shout menacingly in a strange language vaguely resembling English, but he's gotten much better. He's clearly not a natural teacher and just needed time to get acclimated. After the first week, the accent stopped being an issue and I noticed that Alyurov indeed was trying his best to get the concepts through my thick skull, albeit unsuccessfully. I could conveniently blame Alyurov for my failing his class, but other people pass his tests, so they're probably not all that hard. He even let us do the second midterm as a take-home after we already took the same exact test in class. My score went up over 150%. I only have two complaints: one, that he doesn't have handouts with examples to make it easier to follow what he writes on the board; and two, that he keeps the class too proof-based and theoretical.

Nov 2003

An absolute genius in math and even threw his unintelligble English it shows. Luckily, he does not expect his students to be math geniuses and curves are generous even though the midterms are easier than those in other calc II classes. If you can understand him then lectures are helpful, if not just read the text. Either way it works and he is very understanding about not giving too much work.

Nov 2003

Overall, a pretty good professor. He explains the material well and fairly methodically, sometimes too methodically perhaps but he made sure we understood. Some complaints 1. His examples in class are nothing like the exams or the HW in terms of level of difficulty - they're deceivingly easy 2. Sometimes, because he went so slowly, he would make us do HW problems over topics we hadn't covered. However, on the upside, he's quirky and nerdy, always nervously snickering at something unfunny, so he's always amusing if nothing else. Seriously though, I think he's a pretty good choice in the Math Department.

Nov 2003

This class is totally useless. I'm not one of those students who goes to extremes either. It's totally true. The first thing you'll have to get over in this class is his incredibly horrible Russian accent, which makes him difficult to understand. On top of that, the majority of the class is spent on proofs that go on forever. Ultimately, one or two of these proofs will randomly turn up as a question on a midterm or final, adding to the egregious nature of this class. Oftentimes you will be able to do all the problems in the book, and will not be able to do well on the midterms. First midterm was easy, second midterm was horrendous. On top of this, he is an ambiguous grader, almost inferring that there will be no curve with statements like "if you get in the 70's you can be guaranteed a C, and MAYBE a little better." That's not usually how it's supposed to work. However, if you take this class, you may very well end up getting a C for having a 70ish average, even if the class average is still in the 40's. DON'T TAKE THIS CLASS. Do yourself a favor and choose a professor who enjoys teaching and tests on things pertaining to the material.

Nov 2003

Shou-Wu is a genius in math, flexible (he cut our problem sets in half because two people complained it was too much work) and funny, but has some communication problems with his hilarious Chinese-American accent. The lectures were more helpful than reading the text, but when a student would ask a question, the response was usually unintelligible, or at the most, unhelpful. In his class, unlike my physics lecture, the seats were never empty. He can be strict (don't try to leave his class early!) and unorganized, but no one is sorry for taking his class.

Oct 2003

Why they make this guy teach undergraduate mathematics is beyond me. It's boring for him and displeasurable for his students. Alyurov may or may not be a sadist (that's still open for debate,) but he is not a pleasant person to learn calculus from. He tries to be interactive but derides students when they don't understand a concept. Sample answer to a student query: "But I just showed you that on the board, right there." He repeat the much-beloved falsism of Columbia math professors that there are "many excellent examples in the book" like a litany. Much of the class is devoted to proofs that you are either given too little time to understand or do not even care about in the first place. If you can't get it in classroom you will be perfunctorily referred to the calculus help room. Numerous and tedious are his complaints about students unable to recall topics that "should have been covered in calculus I." So says he of Calculus I, but experience tells a different story. Eventually you too will wonder why you need to attend this class and recognize that the abuse isn't worth it. To add insult to injury, the exams are next to impossible, i.e. quite possible to get a 0.

May 2003

This class was excelent. Phan is a very good teacher, and is always available to help you out if you are having problems or if you want to joke around. Take his class if you actually want to learn some calculus. He's not easy, but if you stay on top of your work and pay attention, you will most likely do well.

May 2003

Jeff was amazing. He taught the material in a straight forward manner. the class however is VERY difficult, especially the exams. Put in effort and he will reward it.

Jan 2003

I generally agree with the other reviews. Neumann's pacing will get on your nerves, and he doesn't explain things well. If you can't learn from the book, or haven't taken Calc IIA concepts before in high school or something, you're probably better off with another professor. He's nice and tries to help his students, but he's kind of flighty and disorganized. I would recommend him to someone who would only be reviewing these concepts or who has no problem learning math from a textbook, as he's pretty nice and you can miss class if you keep up with the book.

Dec 2002

good things first: prof. neumann is a nice person. he attempts to answer your questions (for the most part) and allows extensions on his homework assignments and webworks when there is mass confusion over problems. trust me, there will be mass confusion. BAD THINGS: this professor is unorganized and confusing! he tries his best to follow his syllabus, but it is pointless. everything he covers needs to be explained at least twice - and most people still won't understand it. it is tough to follow what he says because he works and walks in circles, pacing around and around. my class got stuck in the worst part of calc, sequences and series, because he did not explain the ideas at an understandably. *if you are not incredibly strong in calculus, GET OUT OF THIS CLASS. mass confusion ahead. X(

Dec 2002

I read all the bad reviews on this site but still, being a dumb freshman, decided to stay in Sean Paul's class. BIG MISTAKE. This professor simply can't teach. He goes way too fast and is all over the place. His tests are predictable, at least after the first one, but impossible. The one time I came to office hours he showed up 30 minutes late, stuck his head in, then said, "Can you wait just a second? Can the TA here help you?", and he was gone. And let's not even mention his trip to Italy for the 3 weeks before our final. I got a 5 on the BC exam and am hoping to pull a C in this class. Hard, confusing, and unhelpful- not a good combination.

Dec 2002

I enjoyed Professor Paul's class immensely. He really enjoys teaching and is always willing to repeat ideas as many times as you need to grasp them. However, if you are shaky in Calc this is definitely not the course to take. Prof. Paul always starts each lesson with the most difficult examples of the subject matter and expects you to read the chapters in advance, and know them. If you enjoy calc. and are willing to put in some outside effort, this course is very enjoyable and not difficult. If you expect to learn everything in lecture from square 1, you will be sorely disappointed.

May 2002

Take this class if you're not great at math. He's a great guy and makes lectures not as boring as they could be. His exams are totally easy, and you get a review sheet in advance so you know exactly what to study. Lots of As are given out, including A+s for those who get 100s on everything, which in this class is totally doable. Take this class!!!

Jan 2002

Professor Gallagher was a pleasure to have as a professor. He's a sweet guy who has a genuine love for math (he held a review session before the final that went well beyond the scheduled length because he wanted to make absolutely sure that he had answered all the questions we had). As a teacher, he has a solid understanding of the material, which he is readily able to communicate to the class. Negatives: he has a thing for numerical computation and proofs, and often went on tangents involving one or both. When this happens, you can generally stop taking notes and paying attention, because that sort of thing was generally not on the exams. Overall: I thought he taught the material very well, and his lectures were (speaking as someone who does _not_ generally enjoy math) actually fun to go to. Highly recommended.

Dec 2001

A very nice woman who honestly cares about her students' grasp of the material. She will go out of her way to have office hours, give practice tests, and go over hw problems in class. My only problem is that she often spends too much time in class answering questions about material that students should be learning on their own, and forgets to cover new material. The flip side is that she is an easy grader. If you are willing to sit through at least three or four classes which consist of getting nothing accomplished, take this class.

Nov 2001

Gallagher is a veritable math pimp. He lectures without any notes, relying instead on his experience in the field (he's gotta be around 65). I have not seen him fail to answer a question yet. At times, he spends class time with extraneous material, such as long, but clear, proofs. Still, if you don't mind learning a bit from the book on your own, this class is a dream. His exams are short, simple and curved generously. Usually there is one fairly difficult problem at the end that separates the high A's from everything else.

Oct 2001

While there is no apparent rhyme or reason to what Troels choses to teach, he teaches the material well and keeps the class constantly amused. He's a fun guy and quite adorable. His grading policy is a mystery to me but his incredible generousity mitigated my need to probe into it further. Take his class--it's worth your time and it's a requirement for econ majors.

Oct 2001

Very tough to understand what he does in class, tests are impossible. Prefers sharing little tidbits about all the cool advanced math he learned as a grad student (and which is obviously way beyond his students) to teaching the stuff you need to know. He always politely asks if you have any questions, but usually answers them by saying "oh, that's really easy," rattling off a quick explanation you can't even follow let alone understand, and moving on. On the last day of class we reviewed for the final. He started by giving us a problem that he said should be really easy because it was the most basic stuff we did all semester. Only one person in the large lecture hall had any clue how to do the problem and he didn't even quite understand how to do it right. Prof. Paul's reaction was something along the lines of "hmm. that's not good. you should all know that. it's really important. hmm. okay, any questions on other topics?" The fact that he had completely failed to teach us anything escaped him. About a week before midterms, a friend of mine who was worried about the Calc IIS final (but knew IIA stuff cold) transferred in.... and, like the rest of us, had absolutely no idea how to do anything on the final. Everyone I know got terrible grades. We're not stupid or terrible at math -- we all did well in other math classes and studied a lot for this one, but even after mastering the concepts and procedures in the book, we had no idea how to do Prof. Paul's problems.

Jul 2001

If you already know the material pretty well, then you won't mind the fact that Prof. Gallagher spends most of the class time doing long, unnecessary proofs, or telling random semi-math related anecdotes. He's a pretty nice guy and always makes time if you need extra help, but the problem is that he speaks math, making it difficult for us non-math majors to understand him. You have to learn of lot of the material on your own and contrary to his high opinion of the world-reknown "Early Transcendentals," I think the textbook sucks! Maybe I'm just stupid, or maybe I just really suck at math... But then again, he dropped my lowest grade and I ended up doing well after all. Oh, one more thing, the homework is spot-checked (he forgot to tell us the first time) which is really bad when you can do everything except for one really difficult problem. Try to make use of the math help rooms (which aren't always "help"-ful). workload=

Apr 2001

A student who once loved calculus, I will study the subject no more, after Paul's class. Extremely dry and mechanical, Paul knew the material, but, it seemed, only what he had prepared the night before. He often could not explain problems - he would just write some equations from his notes on the board, and the poor students were left confused. No great teacher; not even a nice person to compensate. I would advise against taking his class.

Jan 2000

Patrick Gallagher is not a young professor, but is far more down to earth and happier to work with students than most professors. He speaks clearly and not too quickly, responds to questions well, and lectures well. While he may get a bit off track with a not as relevent proof that takes up much of a lecture, he also displays suprising humor from time to time. This all makes him an excellent choice for lower level math courses.

Jan 2000

As a person, he is very congenial and willing to help at his late night, pre-midterm help sessions. As far as the lectures, they are almost completely unnecessary for the homework and the midterms. If you don't mind learning out of a good textbook and just using a professor for the things you have problems with, he is definitely the way to go.