professor
Linn Mehta

This professor has earned a CULPA silver nugget

Dec 2020

PLEASE AVOID THIS PROFESSOR. Not only is the class not rewarding, but the professor also went out of her way to undermine and degrade me as a student, person, and learner. I am still healing from the constant harassment and discrimination she put me through.

Aug 2020

Despite the mixed reviews, with deep regret, I took the chance with this professor. This professor created a hostile environment in the classroom, office hours, and in the virtual classroom. When we were on campus, I attended office hours 1-2 per week. Office hours were uncomfortable and hostile. This hostile environment began with a writing assignment and speech on our personal story that shaped our perception of America. In seeking help on articulating my story, this professor compared me to others in order to invalidate my story. In particular, if you are a person of color, first-generation, or low-income, I highly recommend not taking this class. As we are taught to question, argue, and advocate, I always approached her about the problematic statements she would say about my essays, in class, and during office hours. This professor would always get very angry with me and defensive. When the classroom went virtual, I faced a wide range of barriers to accessing classes and learning. This professor refused to listen to multiple people that were contacting her about me; she was extremely unaccommodating. While The College went to universal pass/fail grading in the middle of the pandemic, she only increased her expectations and continually held a passing grade against me. This professor also completely overstepped; she took it upon herself to contact my previous professors and contact people to get information on me.   Aside from all of this, I can honestly say that I did not learn anything from this course. I am a very serious student and absolutely love an intimate learning experience. I was very disappointed that I didn't get the promised Barnard First-Year experience. This professor does not know how to engage students or lead a discussion; classes were often silent and awkward. This professor was inattentive to my writing and would often simply misread my drafts. Her feedback only consisted of surface-level edits (ie. grammar, style, sentence structure). I highly discourage any course with this professor.

Apr 2020

Linn Mehta is the sweetest woman in the entire world. She is also very helpful when giving feedback on your writing. As long as you make and effort and take her corrections, you can succeed in the class. The discussions in class can be very boring, it's true unfortunately. The readings are good (except Wasteland, that was awful), people just don't do them (this was true even before classes went online). But also, she could do a better job of getting the class engaged. I feel bad saying anything bad about her, she truly is the sweetest person ever.

Dec 2019

Where do I start? Professor Mehta is quite the controversial figure. Some dislike her, some are ambivalent, and others love her. Her comments, although well-meaning, are for sure occasionally eyebrow-raising and has caused many an eye-roll (and a lot of stifled laughter). Our class was entirely discussion-based - every class is based on a reading or two, and although she initiated the conversation with some guiding questions, the discourse was pretty free-range and went in any direction the students wanted it to. In that sense, the discussion can be very thoughtful and provoking, but if none of us read the readings or if nobody was really interested in the topic at hand, it would not be so fruitful and can even become very shallow. Writing for Professor Mehta is a double-edged sword - on one hand, she is awesome with allowing multiple drafts and many feedback sessions as long as you are prompt and give her adequate time; however, although she gives a lot of freedom regarding topic choice, she does drop hints about what direction she wants the paper to take (and the general consensus among all of us in her class is that she isn't satisfied with "independent choices" unless she agrees with them; so sometimes you'll have to bend your narrative to fit her thinking) which honestly isn't that bad - it just gets on your nerves sometimes. This is a class that requires you to do what you're told and if you do you'll be just fine. It also exposes you to a lot of South American literature that you wouldn't be interacting with otherwise. Although it was a pain sometimes and gave me headaches, Professor Mehta has good intentions and truly wants every one of us to do well. This is beside the point but at the end of the semester, she invited all of us to her place to have Indian food and dessert, which was super heart-warming.

Dec 2019

Where do I start? Professor Mehta is quite the controversial figure. Some dislike her, some are ambivalent, and others love her. Her comments, although well-meaning, are for sure occasionally eyebrow-raising and has caused many an eye-roll (and a lot of stifled laughter). Our class was entirely discussion-based - every class is based on a reading or two, and although she initiated the conversation with some guiding questions, the discourse was pretty free-range and went in any direction the students wanted it to. In that sense, the discussion can be very thoughtful and provoking, but if none of us read the readings or if nobody was really interested in the topic at hand, it would not be so fruitful and can even become very shallow. Writing for Professor Mehta is a double-edged sword - on one hand, she is awesome with allowing multiple drafts and many feedback sessions as long as you are prompt and give her adequate time; however, although she gives a lot of freedom regarding topic choice, she does drop hints about what direction she wants the paper to take (and the general consensus among all of us in her class is that she isn't satisfied with "independent choices" unless she agrees with them; so sometimes you'll have to bend your narrative to fit her thinking) which honestly isn't that bad - it just gets on your nerves sometimes. This is a class that requires you to do what you're told and if you do you'll be just fine. It also exposes you to a lot of South American literature that you wouldn't be interacting with otherwise. Although it was a pain sometimes and gave me headaches, Professor Mehta has good intentions and truly wants every one of us to do well. This is beside the point but at the end of the semester, she invited all of us to her place to have Indian food and dessert, which was super heart-warming.

Nov 2017

Linn is a very nice woman, but she does not facilitate discussion successfully. The readings are often interesting and carry a nice thread throughout the course; however, her class is incredibly boring. Only 2 students participate and are engaged. She changes her feedback after handing back the essay, which makes it incredibly challenging to write successfully for her. Unlike any other first year writing class, we had to write an extra essay and a 10-15 page research paper (not the usual 7-9 pages).

Jul 2015

Prof Mehta encourages you to find your own voice and seek out your own interpretation and meaning in the material, which makes her a rare gem among the overly pedantic, egotistical English teachers that we all know too well. I wasn't interested in Latin American literature at all before taking this course but Prof Mehta made me fall in love with it. She's open to a more creative slant on assignments, and she believes in pushing you to find the beauty of the written word. She is one of the best professors I've had at Barnard and I urge you to take her course-she's one of those "life changing professors" that the Barnard recruiters were telling us about when they convinced us to come here.

May 2015

First Year Seminar: The Americas Professor Mehta and I got along like oil and water. Shade was thrown 24/7, and I think there was a mutual dislike of each other, which you could tell even whilst in class, where she would subtly try to make all of my arguments fall through, and always look shocked when I said something that could be construed as smart. She also is very easily side-tracked, and picks favorites. I came into the class not quite knowing what to expect, but I'd heard good things about her. We had much more work than other seminar classes, and it was treated more like a first-year English class than a seminar. Each paper had its own spin on it; one time we had to give a speech to the class, one time we had to do a creative writing, etc. You don't really need to read the books to keep up in the class, and most of the class is discussion. This is, however, a pretty work intensive course, with a great deal of readings as well as writings. However much we did not get along, I will admit that my writing did improve in her class. I felt my writing tighten and was much less wishy-washy. which is funny, because she always gave me poor grades on my assignments because she felt I was "too concise". She very much likes students who are prolix and are deeply interested in subject matters that come up in her class. Otherwise, she won't really be fond of you. Mehta is very good with drafts, and she always meets with students one-on-one to help them out, and responds in decent time to emailed drafts for more input. Her grading is generally quite fair.

May 2014

I am so grateful that I had Professor Mehta for my first-year English course. SHE IS AMAZING!!! She single-handedly gave me the "small liberal arts school" experience that made me choose to attend Barnard. She works one-on-one with each student, and is interested in their lives outside of class. I found that I spent extra time on her class because I knew that she would give me specific feedback on even my best work, so the more I put in, the more I would get out. I decided to take her class for my first-year Seminar, and again, found it incredibly rewarding.

Jan 2011

One of the nicest and most understanding professors you'll ever have. She has a really intriguing life (she's married to a famous Indian author, and invited her students over to her house for a meal at the end of the semester) and incredible passion for all of her subject material. She's very encouraging during discussion, which is great for first-year students who are hesitant to speak up. The class will really bolster your speaking skills. The reading assignments bordered on excessive, and we didn't even discuss most of it in class. She could have done a better job with facilitating more enthusiastic discussion. The papers assigned covered a broad range of writing styles, and I guarantee you'll be a better writer upon finishing the course. Her conferences are very helpful, though she rarely ever criticizes.

Apr 2010

Linn Mehta is a great professor. She knows so much about her field and all the readings that she is always happy to clarify or help get the discussion started. Also she is extremely helpful in improving writing skills. I was lucky enough to have her for both semesters of my first year and my writing improved immensely. I started out as someone who would write about something boring and safe just to make sure it made sense and by the end of the year I could write about much more complicated topics with more confidence and clarity. I would highly recommend this class and Professor Mehta. She is such a nice person, always willing to meet with you to go over drafts or simply to talk about ideas. At the end of the semester, she invites you to her apartment for Indian food which is also very fun. If you have the chance, definitely take this class! It's full of interesting reading, discussion, and writing.

Sep 2009

I loved this class and I loved Prof. Mehta. She helped my writing skills so much. I know that for some people in my class she demanded quite a few drafts, which I can understand can be annoying, but it's only because she wants your writing to improve and she wants to give you a good grade. For me, she was always open to me sending her as many drafts as I wanted and she really helped me clarify my writing. After each rough draft she would always write detailed notes and critiques as well as engaging in a 10-15 min long meeting, where instead of speeding through it and looking at her watch like most professors, she acted as if she could give you as much time as necessary to really help improve your writing. With the class being only 16 girls, she molded herself into more of a member of the discussion than an overseeing professor. When we (as a class) were really getting into the nitty, gritty analytical parts of the literature she was always helpful with her thoughts and helped to move the conversation along. That being said, there was some amazing girls in my class who honestly made the course that awesome. Being a lover of analyzing lit myself, there were quite a few of us in this class so we didn't really need much guidance when it came to discussion. Mehta didn't even really lead the discussion (which I appreciated), she prompted us with a few questions or thoughts but other than that my class was pretty self-sufficient. I know a lot of people hate their seminars and whatever, but I was so lucky. This class was amazing. On the last day of class, everyone was saying how this was the way people imagine college classes: deep, interesting, expanding and engaging.

May 2008

Mehta is a sweet lady with absolutely no business leading a discussion-based class. She was so unassertive that our class walked all over her which, reasonably, upset her to the point of scolding us often. Mehta lectured for almost half the class and then was shocked when we did not participate in the narrow dicussion topics she gave to us. We were not allowed to lead our own class or set the tone for any of the discussions. Sitting through an hour and fifteen minutes of this class was insanely excruciating.

Sep 2007

I love love LOVE this woman! She knows everything about the subject matter, genuinely cares about her students, and rewards those students who show her how much of an effort they are making. There are not enough nice things I can say about this professor. The class was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life and I would take it again if given the opportunity. I only wish I were an English major to be able to take more classes with her. At the end of the term she invited my class to her apartment to have an Indian lunch. She's just so great. Take classes with this professor! I can't fathom what anyone WOULDN'T love about her.

Mar 2007

Professor Mehta may seem too timid to direct a class at a first glance - but don't be fooled, she is an incredibly strong and knowledgeable professor. Once she begins to lecture on the course material, her reserved demeanor disappears, and you realize she houses a vast expanse of knowledge on everything literature-related. She comes to her lectures very well prepared, equipped with all sorts of hand-outs to complement the material being read. Her lectures are interesting, not just for the literature chosen, but also because of her own enthusiasm and engagement with the material. In addition to her intelletual prowess, she is a very sweet and caring person. She will meet with her students whenever needed at whatever time. She is very kind with her criticism and honors differences in personal style. She makes sure she gets to know her students as individuals outside of the class setting, and is willing to serve as a mentor for any questions you bring to her. BOTTOM LINE: The course material is interesting and thoroughly taught. My writing style also improved under her gentle, guiding hand. Despite having the class at the early hour of 9 a.m., I always looked forward to it because Professor Mehta made the small seminar room a warm, comfortable, homey environment for her students.

Jan 2007

Writing in college is difficult. Few teachers have Prof. Mehta's patience and skill. This woman taught me how to WRITE. She really really cares about her students and allows rewrites. She meets with everyone after each paper and sometimes its annoying but trust me ull appreciate her. She is such a sweet woman and really facilitates discussion in her class. I would love to have another english prof like her.

May 2005

Prof. Mehta is one of the most understanding professors I've had yet. I feel l ike she honestly cares about her students, and she's always available if you need her. She was very flexible with the paper deadlines, and she always let us write first drafts and even scheduled meetings to discuss them. If you want to improve your writing, she's a great person to go to. Unlike most professors at this university, she will give you the paper grade that you deserve, it's no easy A. (probably an easy B though) If your paper is bad enough, she'll give it back without a grade, and let you rewrite it. She's a very caring and wonderful professor. She even changed the syllabus for this awful class to fit our interests.

Dec 2003

while the class was tedious, it's hard to say whether it was Prof. Mehta's fault or not: the first year english syllabus that she had no control in designing really sucks. also, it was a 9:10 class, so no one wanted to participate. Prof. Mehta is extremeley understanding: very flexible paper deadlines, always available to meet and help, always understanding if you're running behind. she's also happy to get rewrites, and her grading isn't easy, but it's always fair, with room for improvement. she's a good editor and a great resource if you really want to improve your writing or your grades. always available. i thought she was just a really nice person, so i'd be interested in seeing what a class of her own design, that wasn't taught at an ungodly hour, was like.

Nov 2003

Not so hot. Not suggested.