Rafael Bordao

Feb 2003

Warning! Warning! He's a nice guy but a terrible, atrocious teacher. Cannot explain grammer to save his life. Does not prepare class lecture, exercises, or even a hint of a game plan. He puts the class through boring, repetitive exercises and has difficulty answering questions. I was seriously underprepared for Intermediate Spanish thanks to this guy. You might think you'll take this for an easy 'A'. Don't do it. You'll regret it in the middle of the semester and you're bored out of your mind and in Intermediate Spanish

Jan 2003

Bordao is probably the nicest prof. I have ever met. He is a really great funny guy who will tell you about some of the strangest things and he keeps class interesting. BUT, he is not a Spanish teacher. He does not seem to have a very great knowledge of Spanish grammar (which is what the class is about!) so he can't tell you why things are, just that they are. His rules for usuage are, "Well that doesn't sound right, so it is wrong. See? Say it. Doesn't that just sound wrong?" Well, I thought it sounded pretty damn right when I wrote it. Also, he doesn't make efficient use of class time at all. You will be in class for about 1 hour 15 min and 15 mins of that class will be learning Spanish. The other hour is him off on one of his very odd and numerous tangents. Not to make him sound all bad, he does try very hard to help his students and his does genuinely care about them. It is just that you will have a hard time learning much Spanish. So, expect to teach yourself.

Nov 2002

Prof. Bordao is a really, really sweet guy. He's funny, considerate of students (even if he calls you by the wrong name for the first month of class), and tells some interesting anecdotes of his life back in Cuba. All of this, however, canNOT compensate for his lack of teaching ability. Firstly, he cannot speak English proficiently, which, given this is an elementary-level class, actually matters. His Spanish is way too rapid-fire and injected with a very heavy accent, so no matter what language he's speaking in, you'll be sure you understand. The biggest problem, though, was that when a student asked a grammar question, he was often (literally) unable to comprehend the question, and so the class would spend an extremely painful twenty minutes while various students engaged in various things to try to get him to just understand the question (ignoring, for the moment, whether/how he'd answer once he understood), including pantomiming. While he's a sweet guy, he has NO clue what he's doing in a class room.