Worst professor I have ever had. She was completely disorganized and unprofessional. Her lectures were lengthy ramblings of whatever liberal, communistic thought that popped into her head at the moment. The book was terrible as well (not even high school equivalent)and the readings were baisically useless. Though i happen to agree with many of her political views, they were fairly inappropriate and irrelevant in this context. Cohen was unable to teach objectively (not to mention engagingly)and I found that the few times i bothered to pay attention i just got pissed off. I did the BARE MINIMUM amount of work required and got an A- which didn't seem like nearly enough for what i suffered through with this useless class.
She was highly disorganized- often forgetting/losing papers, coming to class late, and repeating the same material in class week after week. The grading was inconsistant, and she even admitted writing harsh comments on people's papers because she was in a bad mood while she reviewed them. The mandatory attendance was ridiculous, particularly because no roster was ever created, so we would take time to fill out our names each class. She said she'd consider class participation despite it being a lecture and not knowing our names. The last class we introduced ourselves. This was her first time teaching at Barnard/ Columbia, so perhaps that is why she was disorganized, so hopefully for the benefit of future students her style will change. Otherwise expect a professor whose approach is pretty unprofessional.
This class is really terrible. No, wait, correction: this class is really terrible with Prof. Cohen. This woman is a disaster. She breezed in once a week to teach the class (she only taught this class, the rest of the time she teaches at Hunter College), totally disorganzied and spacy. The lectures were PAINFULLY boring. She took attendance, so I opted for no reading and all class. The lectures were textbook anyway. She always raved about her Hunter students, and you could sense an ever so slight attitude of hostility toward the class because we go to Columbia/Barnard, and therefore must be elitist brats. The papers were very stupid, especially the first, which was an autobiography. She told another student that she refuses to give As on principle!!!! Then she freaked out when the TA was giving ppl As, and tried to reduce everyone's grade! It was unreal!!! Then, to top it all off, at the final she asked what we would be writing on (seemingly unaware of the use of blue books), and since she didn't have any, we had to write on unlined Barnard letterhead. It was laughable. Seriously, spare yourself.
Only take this class with this professor if you have to. Lectures rambled and rambled and rambled, and never strayed from the book - you didn't actually have to go to class because lectures added absolutely nothing. it got to the point where I could only force myself to go to class once every two weeks (and because of the "mandatory" attendence, which was, in reality, only checked sporadically, and given my sparse attendance and my grade - in no way actually held against you).
I hated this class. Prof. Cohen taught directly out of the (boring) textbook, and I found myself bored almost into a coma. The good news, knowing things and paying attention in class was not necessary to achieve a good grade. Attending all lectures could help, but overall she was very disorganized and I don't know if she would have noticed any absence anyway. She lost everyone's grades and my paper (though it was eventually found), and wrote rude comments on some of my classmate's essays. Overall, I would skip this class.
This is an easy intro class if you want to fulfill a requirement, but not great on content. She's a nice lady and tries to bring class discussion into a large lecture, which is tough. Ernesto the TA is great, but a little hard to understand with his thick accent. Mandatory attendence is a bummer, but classes are occasionally a bit interesting.