Dr. Sheehan is a pretty good professor. I am definitely not an art person, yet she managed to make some of the topics fairly interesting. Our class was very interpretive; unlike most other Art Hum classes, we didnt have to memorize pictures and names and dates; we had to analyze the pieces (it sounds hard but it's really not). There were 3 papers, each 3-4 pages, dealing with an analysis of 1 or 2 works. Also a final; before the final we were given a list of 16 possible essay questions (which the class prepared and she edited) and the final consisted of 2 of them (no choice of the questions on the exam). For the final, you do have to think of some works from memory-you wont have the pictures in front of you-but it is really not too bad. A good teacher who cares about her students and the subject, though a bit flaky at times.
Ok she's really not that bad. She will make you work extremely hard for your grade and yes it is very beneficial to talk to her about your papers in advance so she knows what she wants. While she has some irritating quriks, she's still definitely a nice person, really cares about art and her students learning and tries to connect with them. She is still very new at teaching and you can tell she is learning a bit as she goes along but she is quite smart and constantly trying to improve. This might not be your first choice for art hum, but certaintly shouldn't be your last either. It is possible to do very very well in this class if you are willing to put some effort into it.
If you are reading this review, its probably because you have been assigned to Dr. Sheehan by the core office and you're trying to decide whether or not to stay in the class. DROP THIS CLASS. In my opinion, the work you put into the class and your own knowledge of art are almost entirely irrelevant in determining the grade you will receive. Instead, to me, the best way to get a good grade is to pander to the professor's own views on each subject. As another reviewer noted, the paper topics she assigned would require 20 pages to respond in a manner she would find satisfactory, but of course she will not allow any paper length extensions. In order to get anywhere near an appropriate grade on a paper, you have to bring it to her and argue your point in her office hours. However, she is extremely inaccessible in office hours, because all the other students will have figured out that they have argue their points to her in person as well. Therefore despite the fact that she gives her time generously, you will find it very difficult to do well on the papers because the open questions have behind them a very specific and hidden agenda, deviation from which will only yield a mediocre grade. In office hours it often seemed that she had not even read the paper students needed help with. She worked very hard to prepare for lectures, which were enlightening, but had virtually no knowledge of art outside of the lecture she had reviewed and her field of study. Students were often surprised at artists with whom she was unfamiliar, and on field trips she often attributed works to the wrong artist.
First of all I would like to start by clearing up something which the previous reviewer had stated - Dr. Sheehan is NOT a "bad person", infact she is a Good person. I will clarify as well that her class is not an easy "A" and that you will have to work hard and do some real thinking about the subject. She was always available for each student who needed to speak with her about papers or anything regarding the class, and even sometimes things not regarding the class. She is a very dedicated person and even put her students first when she was very ill in the hospital. Her lectures are highly interactive and she encourages everyone to say whatever it is they think about a subject. She guides the class discussions and then allows the students to roam free in their interpretations and ideas about the art or atists the class is looking at. This format is highly conducive to learning as she encourages the students to use their recently aquired knowledge in challenging and interesting ways. Her class is far from boring and really ended up being the one class I was actually looking forward to every week. So, yes, the class is tough and if you take the time to try hard you will do well. And you will find that Dr. S is really an amazing person when you get to know her. You will come out of her class at the end of the semester happy to have had the class and you will be packed with tons of interesting and essential facts, and knowledge about art. A really good class and a great professor.
After taking this class which could have been quite interesting, I am left with a bad taste in my mouth. Dr. Sheehan was a decent lecturer and once she started to come down off her power trip and became less domineering in class, discussions picked up. This was supposed to be a core class and not a difficult one at that. Her assignments, which seem very innocent at only 2pgs each, ask questions which need 20 pages to answer. Then after spending hours trimming my essay back, I get notes on it asking to elaborate in several spots. Good luck getting a decent grade in this potential GPA nukebomb.