professor
Keri Bertino

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

May 2007

Keri Bertino is the best thing since sliced bread. Imagine a boring, mean and evil instructor as 90% of UW teachers are guilty of one of those, yet she is the complete opposite of all of those. She really cares about the students that put in a good faith effort, and she considers improvement in her final grade. She had class outside a few times. She let everyone be themselves in class, and still managed to have a learning environment where everyone learned what was going on. This was one of the most helpful classes I have ever taken for my writing, and it is mostly thanks to Keri Berino. Is my review excited? Yes. But she is there for everyone, not just the students that did well. She always was asking people when/if they wanted to meet.

May 2007

Keri's sweet and easygoing manner helped to create a relaxed environment, which is saying a lot given how initially neurotic myself and my eleven classmates were, and the fact that our classroom was one of those hot, sweaty, hellish bunkers in the basement of Pupin. At first, I was happy to take part in the game that is University Writing, completing my exercises and banging out my drafts with great gusto. But as the year dragged on, I became more and more embittered towards the way the class glorified such artificial constructs in such euphemistic language. What in God's name is a "lens essay" or a "conversation essay" or a "CCP" or a "seed text"? You see, University Writing with Keri doesn't really teach you to write, it teaches you to write academic essays, but it doesn't really teach you to write academic essays either, it teaches you to write academic essays in the University Writing way, and it doesn't exactly teach you to write academic essays in the University Writing way either, it teaches you to write University Writing essays through the lens of Keri, or maybe there's even a conversation between the two. It's all good and well to know to write in such a style, but kind of restrictive, and after reading my classmates' essays instruction in writing with voice and panache would have been just as helpful as robotically cranking out a few more passionless research papers. David Foster Wallace or Hunter S. Thompson would have gotten C's. But maybe that's just the way academic writing goes, and I did learn a lot without going through any sort of intense pain that often marks other UWriting experiences, so I can't complain. In conclusion, I'd recommend Keri, especially if you need work on tightening your writing, but with the above qualifications. Grading is typical Columbia-tough: reasonably hard to get an A, just as hard to get a C.

May 2006

How Keri manages to have so much energy in the morning amazes me. As a person, she's very hyper and sweet. As a teacher, she basically does what the course requires of any professor. Some of her input and evaluations of essays may help, but in the end you just revise your essays accordingly. The class was actually bearable with Keri as a teacher and her grading is very fair. My semester, we used the portfolio system which I found to be very helpful and the grading tended to be easier on the folders.

Apr 2006

I love this woman. She was genuinely interested in helping everyone improve their writing abilities, and she did a good job of cutting through the standard U. Writing jargon so the assignments were clear. She was always willing to meet with students outside of class, and her feedback on papers was helpful. She could certainly be critical in grading, but her points were valid and she took long-term improvement into account. She also catered to our interests in selecting readings, so the course was always pretty interesting in terms of content. It didn't really change my writing style that drastically, but I learned some helpful techniques, and Keri did her best to keep things lively. Overall, a sympathetic and fun instructor who was always well-prepared.

Apr 2006

Keri is a wonderful UW teacher. I made all my friends jealous talking about how great my UW class was. She is a writer in the school of the arts and taught writing in a ways that I'd never thought about before, like how to use language to make an argument. She is so passionate about writing and teaching. Her comments on my drafts helped me see things about my writing that i never even thought about before, and she was really great in conferences-she obviously paid very close attention to my writing, and would remember page numbers for specific SENTENCES and help me talk about my paper in ways that would help me develop new ideas. She has pretty high standards for grading but does a lot to help you live up to those standards in your writing. Also she's really funny and a caring, dedicated teacher. Definitely take this class with Keri if you have the chance!

Apr 2006

Hyper and Happy! Yay Writing!! I actually really liked Keri. I thought she did a good job of helping me on my essays, and graded fairly. She liked to sing and dance in class, which I enjoyed and helped me stay awake. I felt she chose good and fair texts, and was willing to help me when necessary.