professor
Alexandra Anderson

Mar 2003

Alas, I finally must step into the fray. I don't approve of "flaming" anyone, however I understand the strong feelings of my classmates. First of all, I think Ms. Anderson is intellegent and interesting. I actually found her to be a nice person. (I also found my classmates to be intellegent, hardworking and despite the fact that I am old enough to be a parent to most of them, "high school babies" is NOT what these young people were AT ALL!) I tried to get transfered from the class after the first week and found I could not do that. This was after I approached Ms. Anderson after getting my first paper back with a question about structuring an "inductive" essay, and before I could ask my question she said "You got a B+ what do want?" and walked away. We did not deconstruct a well structured "inductive" essay until the second half of the semester, so some of us were simply using trial and error. As a teaching model, "discovering" is a wonderful thing in some minds. I find flailing around counterproductive. At it's best, writing is an art. For those of us not touched by genius, writitng can at least be a craft. Craft has technique and there are tools which can be learned. Structure and form are part of that. Exercises for an essay were done after the essay was turned in. For instance, and essay that focused on description was written and turned in, and after this we did an exercise on how to describe a white mug. One student asked if it would be better to do these exercises before attempting these essays and was told "no." This is a teaching model that I am not familiar with: to do preparatory exercises afterwards. But, that I'm not familiar with it does not mean it does not exist. The fact that this teaching model may exist that does not mean that I found it a vailid or useful. Our last few weeks were spent on "humor" which consisted of reading funny prose. How this related to our time spent on "inductive" writing, I could not quite fathom. I was also shocked when after slugging it out as best I could for the whole semester my final rewrite got a FULL grade level higher than my original paper. The kicker was, I changed three words and really passed in the same paper again. (That's how discouraged I was). While I was glad for my GPA to accept the large grade hike, I could not feel I deserved it. For all you who may be tempted to call me a cry-baby and bitter: I got an A in the course. It was the first A I have ever recieved in my life that I felt was meaningless because I still don't know what the heck and "inductive" essay is or what it can be used for! But a note: I enjoyed talking the Ms. Anderson, I am actually reading some of the books she recommended and am enjoying them. I DO think she has a tremendous amount to offer. I think if Columbia is going to have "young" teachers, they should give these kids some kind of method of teaching. Teaching is also an art at it's best, and a craft at least. One must learn a craft. L&R is an ill concieved class, and Columbia is sending talented people into the classrooms without the basic tools, or methods to effect any value. I think fault lies with the English department rather than with Ms. Anderson. At $800 a credit, I think the English department should be ashamed!

Mar 2003

I really don't understand the 3 really horrible reviews on Ms. Anderson. Thus far, she has been a very good teacher and a fair grader. The sutff I have learnt in her class actualyl ahs helped me in other classes. Her comments on the paper are insightful and they are their to point out actual weak points in your writing. They are not just there to annoy you. And, yes, class someties lacks energy but that's mainly due to some students lack of participation.

Dec 2002

Reading the tough reviews Alex has received from other students, I can only imagine that these students are the HIGH SCHOOL BABy tyPES who miss their mommies very dearly, especially when churning out crappy, llogical thoughts in essay form and handing them in for a Columbia teacher to grade. Alex is a strict grader, but it is apparent from the commentary on my papers that she wants me to think about the logic in my thought process. (Also fine grammer points). Alex is not the sweet homemaker mommy that many of her students have left back home. It is difficult for her to hide her frustration when students do not participate or show disrespect by chatting. Nope, she will not braid your hair nor check that the elastic in your boxers fits just right. She asks that you participate in class and put alot of hard work into your papers and not ignore her commentary on corrected papers. Class discussions often lacked enegry. Alittle bit because of BABy tyPES. Alittle because of uninteresting teacher feedback. Alot of focus on grammer. Alex was available after class for private discussion. Must do alot of hard work or you will no way be a favorite. Also if you act like L&R is for idiots, you will definately notice that Alex thinks that yOU, my friend, are an IDIOt. Accept that hardly any one gets A';s in L&R. Accept that though you may be have a great alto voice, you will not get an A in a mechanics training program (Get it?? Write LOGICALLy in L&R, not poetically) and stop crying.

Nov 2002

If there is a way to change your L&R teacher, then do it now! Andeson openly admits that she will not give anyone a final grade of an A- of higher. Her classes are a waste of time, and if you attempt to use what she has taught in any other class you will be told that you are wrong. She does not care about her students, and is quite frankly just obnoxious. I am not just an angry student trying to complain... For your own sake get out!

Oct 2002

This woman is not a good teacher. Our class time is spent either going over pointless grammar or embarassing someone by reading their work aloud. She finds the necessity to berate the students in the class because she feels it is the best way to make us learn. She does not make herslef easily available...she has a set time, and is very rigid with this time. This would not be a problem if she was there all of the time!!! Her attitude towards her students is all in all bitchy. I HATE THIS WOMAN!!!!! If you see this name on your schedule, attach jesse owens legs to yours and run the hell away!!!

Oct 2002

This woman is a monster...she should be completely removed from the classroom....[CULPA CENSOR]...She has a magical ability, that I can't argue. She has the ability to turn a person in love with writing off completely to the subject of english. She takes off letter grades for simply using contractions...ONE CONTRACTION FOR ONE LETTER GRADE?!!!! What the hell is wrong with her? Her topics frequently deal with pictures, and her language within the assignment is annoying. "Please write a masterful essay". This would be funny if she was joking, but she's dead serious. Now, I'm being serious. If this woman should appear on your schedule, don't take the class. I don't care about requirements, just get the fuck out.