professor
Mario Valero

This professor has earned a CULPA silver nugget

May 2007

Mario is amazing, even if simply for the fact that he often will speak super fast but you can still understand what he is saying. He speaks clearly and has an energy that is unrivaled at Columbia. If you could ever say that a professor "professes," this is what Mario does: he constantly darts around the room, raises his voice -- "este punto es fundemental chicos, imaginate la magnitud...ta...ta...ta" -- and somehow manages to get you invested in the material (who are we kidding, 15th century Spanish poetry feels very unapproachable and difficult to glean much from at points). His grading is very generous, and he gives you several chances to make up for poor grades. If you're doing a Spanish minor or major, I suggest you opt to take as many required courses as you can with Mario (and of course any other courses he is teaching).

Aug 2006

Mario is a great professor. He gives entertaining lectures, takes time to explain each lesson in detail, returns work on time, and is a generous grader.

Apr 2006

I have had many discussions with Mario after class, in ENGLISH.True, he may not speak english in class, but that just may be why they titled the course: SPANISH. His curriculum is 90% from the text books and the rest are worksheets, which help to make the material from the text more relevant to Columbia students. I have studied three foreign languages, in the US and abroad, and Mario is by far the best instructor I have had. He is patient, energetic, and able to include students from all levels in his discussions. Mario is highly intuitive, and I have seen him alter his lessons when he senses the class is not grasping the material. The only accurate depiction of Mario in this review were the first two words "Nice guy," the rest is erroneous, or at best, completely outdated.

Aug 2005

Mario is a great teacher that really tries to help out his students. He is funny and makes a fifty minute class go by in no time. Unlike some teachers, you actually learn spanish from him. I would fully recommend taking Mario for your language requirement.

Jan 2005

He is a wonderful teacher. I had him for my first semester of college-level Spanish and I just remember that I was never bored by him. If you like Spanish, he will engage you and try to make you speak as much as possible (I remember a number of skits and other like group presentations). Even if you don't participate in class, the group skits will make up for it. I pursued Spanish because of him. Wonderful guy. (and easy grader)

Jan 2005

Overall I think Mario is a pretty good professor. He genuinely cares about his class and he is always really excited to be in class. He actually made class go by reasonably quickly (which is saying something). He jumps around and cracks jokes and does his best to keep everybody interested. On the other hand he assigned tons and tons of busy work. It was about ten times as much as my teachers from the other Spanish classes. Also if youÂ’re serious about learning Spanish Mario might not be the best professor because I did not really learn too much. He is a very fair grader. His tests are not too hard or too easy.

May 2004

Nice guy but doesn't speak English. He waste a considerable amount of time in class. He hates the text book so basically refuses to teach from it. The problem here is that the exams are based off of the text so his classes are worthless. Be prepared for 50 minutes of waiting for class to end. I do not recommend taking his Spanish class unless you can grasp the language without being taught.

Nov 2003

A+ to Professor Valero for his competent teaching, friendly attitude, screwball sense of humor, and impeccable taste in shoes. Getting to know the Spanish language was a great deal of fun under the leadership of this man (who, by the way, insists that you call him by his first name). He's a fair and objective grader who keeps regular office hours and is able, despite a sometimes-shaky grasp of English, to dissect and explain the more complicated aspects of Spanish so that even the more blockheaded students (such as I) can understand them. He's just the right combination of the serious and the lighthearted: at different points in the semester, he employed calisthenic exercises, Blue's Clues, and Broadway acting techniques in his attempt to teach us his native language. My recommendation is unqualified -- I'm signing up for another of his courses in Spring 2004.

Nov 2003

I love this man!! Funny, interesting, clear, and very very approachable. Also a generous grader - he drops the lowest quiz grade and offers extra compositions and assignments to those who want to raise their grades. Take his classes if you can!

May 2002

Mario plays favorites, and when he talks, he tends to backtrack leaving students questioning what exactly he said. The only improvement I made in my spanish this past semester was at home, writing those compositions. It certainly wasn't in the class room with Mario.

May 2002

Although I took these classes from him a little while ago, when I saw that Professor Valero had no reviews on the website, I had to put in 2¢ (no relation to procrastinating on an essay whatsoever). Anyway, Mario (as he insisted we all call him) is great. Suuuuuuuper nice, very clear, and very understanding. Oh, and an adorable Prada briefcase, natch. Take any Spanish class you can from him. People who know him transfer into his classes when they have the chance--it's worth it.