professor
Theodore Diament

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

Apr 2003

Ted was absolutely great! After taking Intro to Java, I thought I was doomed for Data Structures, but this class was surprisingly pleasant. For every assignment, he always gave us a tutorial that guids us through the whole assignment, and in it are explanations and examples that helps you complete about 75% of the work. Then the last 25% is the actual homework. This was really helpful. The book is not so helpful, but his lectures are quite important but fun to attend. He learns names of students and explains things not in some comp sci jargon but in easily understood everyday words. Ted cracks jokes often so it's not uncommon to have the whole class burst out laughing. The review sessions are really awesome since he gives great examples and lively demonstrations to make sure everyone understands the material. He's really reasonable with homework also, so we actually got extensions for all the assignments. In the end, there was even extra credit opportunities which really helped my grade. If you can, take data structures with him!!!!

Dec 2002

I might have to say that Ted was one of the best instructors I've had at Columbia so far. Keep in mind I'm an engineer and that's not saying much, but the man was great. He made Data Structures, a class I was POSITIVE was going to kill me, understandable to even the dimmest programmer. Some people in the class were annoyed by this and said he went as the pace of the dumbest kid in the class but hey, when you're the dumbest kid, you're not complaining. Seriously though, I disagree with that statement because I think Ted really cared about whether or not we learned the material. He was very understanding about homeworks and granted extensions whenever necessary, in addition to giving a VERY fair midterm and final (not easy, fair). The homeworks were time-consuming and tough but hey, this IS data structures. He went over each of them in class and made sure we knew exactly what was going on. He's a very personable man with a good sense of humor though he may weird you out in the beginning because he'll stare at you to remember your name (but he makes the effort to learn everyone's name! when's the last time an instructor of a 60 person class did that??) In conclusion, I love the man, I'd take every class with him if I could-and not just because I'm the dumbest kid in most classes.

Dec 2002

Ok, if u r thinking of taking this course, then most likely u dont have a choice. this is for all those non CS majors. its offered only in the FALL so plan accordingly!! if u have to take it, take it with prof diament (we call him TED). he is awesome. has a very good sens eof humor. makes fun of himself and CS. very friendly guy/ he is extremely reasonable to students and underatands that this course is for NON CS MAjors who arent that good in programming. he always gave us extensions. he made long online tutorials posted online which help a LOT! the book doesnt help much so u got to go to his classes, follow them and make sure u go through the tutorials. we were supposed to have 5 assignments but got only 4 due to the extensions he gave us. so he is cool. in general, TAKE IT WITH him; the material is still difficult but he will make it bearable. u can easily get a C+ or even B- if u do well on the programming assgn. its always best to brush up on ur JAVA skills before u start this class and always begin days if not weeks in advance. i strongly recommend this ta named JUSTIN!! he was awesome! a very nice guy. he isnt one of those CVS TA's who just tell u what to do and then leave u there, but one of those rare ones who will help u every step. he even agrees to meet up during weekends or outside his office hrs for programming assgn. another TA was OLGA-- helpful but then again, only if u know what u are doing. if u r raw at java/DS, then she is not for u

Dec 2002

One major problem at this school is that many professors are chosen based on their skills in their field, not in teaching; thus, most of the time it turns out that the prof knows what he's doing but the rest of the students do not. Prof. Diament actually knows what he's doing AND how to teach it to others, a skillset I greatly admire. And on top of all that, he even has a sense of humor!