course
intermediate spanish

Apr 2006

I love Flora. Though I would not suggest her to a student who wants to learn Spanish in the classroom. In the beginning her classes were unbearable.. but they have become enjoyable! She is very entertaining and relaxed. She just really doesn't teach much. (Though I've heard her more advanced literature courses are amazing) She doesn't go over very much/ANYTHING in class. She expects students to study themselves without her having to explain ANYTHING. Her tests aren't difficult but she grades harshly in contrast to other language professors I've had. Classes are taken up going over the previous night's assignments to which an average of 4/22 people bother to complete.. or at least, copy answers from the back of the book. I love Spanish and though I've missed out on a proactive professor, going through the syllabus is alone strong and fundamental exposure to the language. It isn't difficult to study from the textbook. She will answer any questions (she's very available) and she allows a first draft on every essay, enabling students to learn from their mistakes and receive higher grades. Again, I have learned to really enjoy her class and her presence.. BUT others in my class can't stand her! She is straightforward (sometimes interpreted as mean) and funny. She refers to herself as "crazy", but in a good way. If you are looking for an efficient and helpful classroom experience I'd try somewhere else.... But this is relaxed and pretty easy-- just read the lessons out of the book!

Feb 2006

What a wonderful woman. What a painless way to fulfill a language requirement! Lorena has so much heart, and loves each one of her students. She is incredibly accessible outside of class. Not that hard of a grader, and definitely wants to see each student reach their true potential.

May 2005

If you are taking a Spanish class because you are actually interested in learning the language, this is the class for you. Carimer is friendly, encouraging and you can tell she enjoys teaching Spanish. During the first meeting, she said late homework wasn't accepted under any circumstance, and much to my surprise, she wasn't bluffing. (Papers can be turned in on the day before the deadline though, that worked out for me.) Unlike my previous instructors, she takes the class very seriously and is not an easy grader: minimum effort and a sob story will not get you an "A" on this class. People looking for an easy way to fulfill the requirement will be better off in another section. Even though the workload is heavish, I found it particularly helpful that all major assignments were given weeks in advance.

Jan 2005

The woman herself is precious and not a bad instructor, but I don't think I'll take another class from her. Even though it was a small class she wasn't interested in individual students and moved pretty quickly. If you've got a good handle on Spanish and a really strong vocabulary, this class is probably fine.

Nov 2004

She is the cutest woman with the best outfits. She is petit Guatemalan who is kind and funny. If you participate in class you will do better. She is a tough grader, but she wants you to understand concepts and is always available to help.

Dec 2003

I definitely completed this class with a far better understanding of Spanish than I had when I started. The assignments are relatively straightforward; practically everything comes out of the textbook. Hernandez, or "Pepe" as we called him, was not the most approachable guy ever, but he was very charming and funny and our class laughed out loud a lot. He encourages speaking aloud and this is definitely not the class to take if you're not comfortable discussing issues and acting (that's right...as in a play) in Spanish. Overall, I learned a lot and laughed a lot, so I would recommend Hernandez's section to someone who has to fulfill the language requirement. My grade, however, seemed a little low for all the work I did.

Dec 2003

Paz, frankly, is the best. She is kind, understanding, considerate, has a great sense of humor, and is a wonderful teacher. I am a third year graduate student, so I have had many professors over the years, and I can honestly say that she is one of my favorites.

Nov 2003

Nice guy...it's true that he seems arrogant for first few classes; however, once the year gets rolling, he is quite friendly and amusing as an instructor. Keeps the course fun and is a very lenient grader. Very approachable during office hours and understands a student's situation regarding HW if you express it to him clearly since he is also a student himself. I recommend this guy.

Nov 2003

You won't learn anything from this professor that you can't learn simply from reading the book. She's nice, a decent person, easy to talk to but doesn't really know how to teach. She basically just lets you read the descriptions in the book and then you just do the exercises.

Aug 2003

when you meet her for the 1st time, she'll intimidate you like crazy. but once a few weeks pass, she'll drop the tyrant behavior and be so friendly and sweet and nice. she's so enthusiastic about teaching and it shows. her tests are diffiult if you don't know your verbs well. you often have to make up sentences yourself on her tests, so even if you know how to congugate the verb you're supposed to, if you dunno how to write some other word. she will take off pts. her fill in the blank paragraphs are also difficult if you dunno alot of spanish vocab. but she's fair. definately an intermediate class.

May 2003

Wow, what an absolute doll. Maria is one of those people that no one can dislike. She is a rare professor who is super nice AND an excellent teacher. Usually you don't get either of those at columbia. She came to class with so much energy, ready and organized to teach us and to make class fun. She brought in spanish songs and a lot of supplemental exercises with are essential. We practiced so much that when you took the quizes, you just knew everything. ABSOLUTELY take this teacher. You will leave each class, having learned spanish yet the class doesn't feel like a "class". It feels more like you're hanging out with a friend and learning a lot. She encourages everyone to do their best and takes the class very seriously. If you don't do well, she gets offended almost! Oh, and she has a really hot brother. I hope she teaches 1202 next semester or some spanish lit classes. I'd love to take her class again.

May 2003

Well, I don't agree with those students who say that she is an awful teacher. I will admit that she is not the greatest Spanish teacher in the world, but she is one of the best in the Columbia Spanish Department. Sadly, I have found that Columbia is greatly lacking in the Spanish Department on a whole and you are not going to find your foreign language experience here all that stimulating. Do not cast off Raquel as a poor teacher; she has some very positive points about her teaching style. She encourages/forces Spanish conversation in class which helps a tremendous amount (and can admittedly be a struggle for those who have trouble listening). Also, she is a very nice, interesting, and funny professor who makes what could otherwise be an unbearable experience actually fun. She can explain rules, and exceptions, much more clearly than other professors that I have had. She really doesn't seem to care about grades at all and rather just wants to make sure that you understand her language and culture.

Apr 2002

If she does not like you-it's over for you! She is an ultimate bitch!!!!!! She is known to call students stupid in class she is also prone to making sensitive students cry in class. Her office hours are meaningless-she'll just tell you to ask another student (trust me they are all in the same position as you are in) !!!! She expects you to do her four hour homeworks and will ostracize you beyond belief if you don't understand something! I hated her class and I still hate her! I really hope that whoever reads this review listens to what I have to say because once you're in her class you are scarred for life!!! By the way she grades on how she feels about you-so if you want to be a dumbass and take her class, I suggest that you suck up tremendously. By now you all should realize that I do not recommend this woman's class. If you are looking for a good spanish professor, take Agueda P. Rayo or Flora Schimnovich. They always see to it that you understand and try their hardest to help you no matter how slow you are.