Diana Bowstead

Apr 2004

The woman is totally crazy. Avoid like the plague. She is totally inappropriate in class, which she runs like a gulag. Be ready for seventh grade remedial grammar lessons (no joke) that go on for hours. Do you remember how to use a semi-colon? Well, you'll learn. You'll also "unlearn" all the writing instruction you've ever had in the past, as Bowstead claims that undergraduate and graduate schools (Columbia included, apparently) "corrupt" their students' writing abilities by rewarding erudition and jargon. She wanted our master's level thesis to be aimed at a target audience of "bright 8 year old children." WTF!?! I did not just pay $40K to be able to talk to an 8 year old. She's nuts--examples of which abound. She'll go on and on about whatever random topic hits her brain--usually something either grammar related or totally unrelated to ANYTHING students were working on. Loves to talk about her adoration for WordPerfect and hatred of MS Word, just based on the grammar functions! (Sensing a pattern here...?) You will find yourself constantly staring at the clock, rolling your eyes, and hopefully, talking back to her at some point. After all, it's not like she has any control over your grade, which she informs you time and again. But you do still have to go to class, so that she can see the "body" of your thesis--apparently the intro, background research, and discussion are no longer considered "body" parts of an essay.