professor
Irasema Alonso

Mar 2021

This class was really challenging on zoom—take in-person reviews with a grain of salt if you have to take it online... Prof Alonso is nice, but her lectures are super dry and there is absolutely no engagement in the class. Grading for the midterm and final was convoluted and opaque, and she responded condescendingly to students’ questions on Piazza asking for an explanation. Final grades seem mysteriously uncorrelated with exam performance. Strange experience.

Jan 2021

Irasema is just kind of awful.

Jan 2021

Oh Prof Alonso. Like other reviews have stated, the online format in terms of testing is completely different from her in-person class. The problems are far more difficult and are not taken directly from PSETs. She also does not curve all that generously even when the class averages were in the 60s for both the Midterm and Final. Also, no partial credit was given for either exam. Oooof. Her lectures are dry and she rarely adds anything beyond what is directly on the slides. However, her office hours were great as she would all but give you the answers to the PSETs. The TAs Matt and Casey were awesome too. Buyer beware with this one. Definitely not the worst Macro section, but not what it was hyped up to be.

Jan 2021

I would definitely recommend taking this class. Professor Alonso is a really nice and approachable person and a great Professor! She cares about her students and always finds time to help them during office hours. The class is very organized, Professor Alonso always uploads everything on time and is well prepared for the lectures. She also gives a lot of hints on what to expect on exams so make sure you note them because if she says she will put something on an exam, you will see it on that exam. I would also strongly recommend going to her office hours, not only when you don't understand some concepts but just to go and listen to what she says or jokes about :) I genuinely enjoyed going to her office hours even when I had no questions. Overall it was a very enjoyable class and if you put the effort into going to her office hours, doing the homework sets, and understanding the lectures, you can get a good grade even without reading a textbook. Professor Alonso also always says that her curve is more generous because if she sees that you work hard, she will make sure to give you the grade you deserve. You do have to put a decent amount of work into the class, however. I definitely recommend doing the problem sets, going to recitations and office hours as much as possible. It is a fairly easy class if you put the effort into it and make sure you understand the material but if you just do the problem sets to get over it and do poorly on the exams even though you go to her office hours, she will not be able to boost your grade from a C to and A so keep that in mind. Also, a lot of other reviews say that she gives homework problems on her exams. I took this class in an online format and since everything was open note, the problems were different on the exams.

Jan 2021

I wouldn't say she's a good professor, but she's a good person? Problem sets are pretty easy. Plus, if you don't know how to do some questions, go to office hours; she will literally tell you the answer and walk you through it. Easy 100 for each. The materials taught in class are not hard at all, but her lectures were so painful. She will contradict herself, talk about how one equation is formed for 20mins, ask us out of nowhere which economist came up with the theory (and doesn't proceed until someone answers correctly holyf*), and misunderstand students' questions. Maybe I have no patience but just reading the textbook (her slides are summaries of the textbook) and checking the slides for problem-solving examples were good for my mental health. So I thought the course would be easy now, but damn I was wrong. Everyone felt good about the exams until the grades came out. The mid-term's average was 50something out of 100. There were even some single-digit grades. Oh btw she doesn't give partial credit on exams, you can easily get 0/15 for questions. So, dear prof gave everyone 30% more points based on your own grade(???). So if you had a below-average grade RIP, and congratulations to above-average ones. You would think an Econ teacher would know better than creating inequality that wasn't there before. Ofcs people were mad, asking on piazza and emailing her and the TAs, but she ghosted us :) Idek if finals are worse: if you have questions about your exam, save it for the TAs cause she will tell you she won't look at it at all since it would "disadvantage other students". Ma'am, I just want to learn cause the answer key doesn't explain anything. Maybe just covid things cause she made exams open-book and extra weird.

Jan 2021

Yikes bro. I was fooled by all the reviews of her class from her IN PERSON days but online this class is a mess. She had technical difficulties in almost every class, the average for the midterm was a C and the average for the final was a D, and the TAs insisted they were doing a good job despite the contrary evidence. The cherry on top of the shit pile was how often Alonso insisted the curve would be generous and she gives out too many good grades. That proved to be kinda true with the final grades but it was a surprise up until the very end! Grades in courseworks did not match SSOL and the SSOL grades, albeit generous, seemed to come with no rhyme or reason. Emails with questions about how grades were determined and how the final was scored (NO partial credit) were met with curt responses from both Alonso and the TAs. She's actually an incredibly lovely woman, and I'm sure the online format does not do her class justice but seriously AVOID the online version at all costs...

Jan 2021

I can understand why some people would like this class, but I do not understand how you would like the professor. She literally power-reads through her powerpoints during class, not really explaining anything. Classes ended up being useless and I had to learn the entire material using the book. She is so obsessed with getting through the powerpoints she will even start a new one when 2 minutes of class are remaining instead of letting you go. Her Psets are not straightforward, but at least you are allowed to work on them as groups. Her midterm and final will destroy your GPA. The grading is extremely harsh. She curves them in a weird way which ends up benefitting those who already got high grades and barely changing anything for those who had the lowest grades. Plus she is not at all lenient. I would really advise you to not take this class with this professor if you don't want a huge blow in your GPA.

Dec 2020

Highly recommend Alonso for Intermediate Macro. She is clear in her teaching and is very accessible to students. Exams are fair.

Apr 2020

I would absolutely recommend anyone to TAKE HER!!! I took her class and everything was straight forward. She is very nice and love to talk to students and help them during office hours. Psets are short and are made out of the lecture notes so you are fine by just reading the lecture slides. I also recommend reading the textbook if you want a better understanding of the subject. The midterm is similar to the problem sets and maybe some things she went over in class. Make sure you take notes. The final has the same format. If you don't understand something or can't figure out the HW, the TA's are more than willing to help you and so is the professor. THIS CLASS WAS GREAT! Never stressed about doing bad or anything.

Apr 2019

I would highly recommend this class to anyone who needs to take intermediate macroeconomics. Professor Alonso's lecture notes were very clear and straightforward. She gives out approximately weekly problem sets which can count towards your grade if they help you. Besides that, there's just a midterm and final exam. The problem sets aren't bad and the TAs and professor are willing to answer questions. If you do the problem sets and read through her lecture notes, you'll be fine for her exams. She's also extremely approachable during office hours and is always willing to talk with you.

Jan 2018

Never take her class. She was the worst professor I’ve ever had. She is just a narrow minded person and does not know much about real world. She was just enteirely anal and obsessed in equations for the entire class. Boring boring boring

May 2017

Alonso is a pretty good professor, all in all. She has relatively easy-to-understand powerpoint slides, and her Problem Sets directly correspond to her exams. Her Midterm is pretty easy, made up for by a challenging (noncumulative) final. She's definitely better at teaching the beginning parts of the course, as it's pretty simple material. She's also a fair grader with decent TA's - they all respond pretty frequently and grade pretty lightly. Her problem sets are optional, but there's no reason not to do them - they only help your grade. Irasema is nice enough to give you two options for how she grades you - either 40% midterm and 60% final, or 25% HW, 30% Midterm, and 45% Final. She gives you the higher grade amongst the two options. Also, about half of her midterm is based off problem set questions, some word for word, without even the numbers being changed. As for the final, she makes it harder by varying the problems based on problem set questions pretty heavily, and asks you to do some pretty complicated voodoo magic with her loss function question. But she's a quirky and fairly entertaining lecturer who explains complicated points fairly well, so I'll give her a pass. All in all, she's worse than what I've heard for Xavier, but she's decent nonetheless.