Martin Uribe

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

May 2021

To preface: Throughout this course, I was terrified I was going to get a D or worse. I somehow ended up getting an A-. This class WILL feel incredibly stressful while you're in it. Uribe's Macro isn't about economics, it's about math. It's a weird applied math class that requires you to memorize a bunch of models and manipulate them. It's hard to know where to even start when looking at Uribe's problem sets. This can be really disconcerting, especially coming out of principles where everything is more or less conceptual. You have to know strange derivative tricks, log tricks, and weird exponent tricks to solve Uribe's problem sets/exams. These weird math concepts make the class feel impossible. To do well in the class, you have to do a few things: 1) Approach it like a math class. 2) Don't focus on learning conceptual concepts. 3) Focus on the models. MEMORIZE all of the relevant equations associated with each model. 4) Do the problem sets and practice problems over and over again before exams. Overall, this class feels really impossible while you're taking it and can be really stressful/disheartening. I would recommend taking it with another professor. I did end up doing surprisingly well though, so don't be overly worried if you have to take Uribe. Just be prepared for it to mentally feel really weird/rough while you're taking it.

Apr 2021

Do not take this class. Literally the worst teacher and class I have taken.

Apr 2021

This course was a rollercoaster, and not in a good way! Uribe is alright, a boring lecturer but he gets the job done. The real problem is the hw. This man does not know what an example problem is, he spends the lectures doing a lot of talking about the models and concepts, but should really delegate more time to doing the actual calculations given his hw was so technical and required using excel sometimes. You need to a lot the proper time to understand what the hw is even about before diving in because it will likely not have the clearest connection to the lecture. Also, my class, this semester had a lot of drama with the TAs to say the least, because they did not know how to run a proper recitation (minus head TA Eddie). Very inconsistent in their teaching styles and the concepts they would decide to cover, which was a bit of a headache. Personally, I did more than ok in this course, but I definitely saw lots of problems that affected other students. If you are not comfortable with econ already and doing some intuitive maths, and have not taken intermediate micro, or want a more engaging prof, I would not recommend taking Uribe.

Apr 2021

There's been a lot of hate surrounding Uribe but he's a great professor. He's really clear in his lectures; a lot of people say that he's too slow with the lectures but I actually think that's a good thing because he takes the time to make sure everything is clear to his students. The TAs for this class though, at least for the Spring 2021 sections, were a bit horrendous. The organization of the class in an online format hasn't been amazing but I'm watching his lectures now before the final, and they're super clear. His line of arguments are well thought out and easy to follow. People who don't like him are just intimidated by the LaTeX equations; his logic is really clear. He's a good professor.

Apr 2021

literally the worst class ive ever taken. would not recommend

Apr 2021

I'm not sure how people take this class at 8:40am or in person. The 2x speed recordings saved the course which is mostly pure algebra and formulas. There is very little justification or logic behind and applications of the concept, so the course feels very dry and disconnected especially for an econ course. Psets take long and are rather confusing but TAs help. I do not recommend you take this course with Professor Uribe

Apr 2021

I'm not sure how people take this class at 8:40am or in person. The 2x speed recordings saved the course which is mostly pure algebra and formulas. There is very little justification or logic behind and applications of the concept, so the course feels very dry and disconnected especially for an econ course. Psets take long and are rather confusing but TAs help. I do not recommend you take this course with Professor Uribe

Apr 2021

Instead of learning about economics, I felt like I was taking a course on weird math tricks to derive formulas. Nothing is intuitive. Tests are difficult. Granted, I took the class remotely and he might be more compelling in person, but he is not great at explaining concepts. It is easier to get by reviewing the slides or watching recordings in 1.75x speed than it is to attend class.

Oct 2019

Professor Uribe's class was really interesting, and I really enjoyed it. I didn't like macro too much when I took Principles, so I was not expecting to find this class very interesting, but I was wrong. This class made me like Econ, and confirmed my decision to declare my major in Econ. Uribe was a very clear professor and explained concepts very well. I liked the way that he explained the intuition and derivations of each model or theory we studied (he would derive equations slowly step-by-step on the board, and he makes it easy to understand- so don't get intimidated by reviews that say this class is too math heavy). He also linked topics we talked about in class to real world situations, which was nice and made the concepts we studied more relatable. Instead of using the textbook, he uploads his own notes to Courseworks, which act as a supplement to the lecture (they're probably not necessary to read, but I did, and I found them helpful). I thought the grading was fair, and he is very helpful/available in office hours to further explain concepts and questions you might have. The TAs for this class were also very helpful and very good at answering questions/explaining concepts. I would definitely recommend going to both his office hours and the TA office hours. This has been one of my favorite classes at Columbia, and I would recommend it to anyone who is taking macro.

Apr 2019

Prof. Uribe is actually a really good teacher. I don't care what others say, and admittedly I missed 1/3 of the lectures due to various reasons. Still, the times I was there to listen to him, he always makes perfect sense. Although he has a slight accent and speaks with one of the blandest voices I have had experience with, the content was great. His lecture notes are also superb. If you're comfortable with numbers, his notes can convey somewhat complex concepts like a breeze. I highly recommend him. Just don't judge by his mere presentation in class. I admit he sounds boring at first, but once you get into it, you'll see his points. Also, his psets are less focused on the nuances of concepts, but on a higher level understanding of them, which i like. There is less number crunching and more intuitive questions. The grading, I heard, is ok. I am only 2/3 finished with the class. Might update when I finish. Psets grade vary a whole lot, but midterm was curved.

May 2016

Avoid taking this professor because statistically speaking, you aren't going to do well. Uribe curves this class so that the average is going to be a B. I don’t think Uribe understands how curving and grading works. Reference sheets are not allowed so the midterm and final were like memorization tests rather than conceptual tests. If you simply regurgitate and memorize the lecture notes, you will do well on the exams. All that happens in class is Uribe derives equations which are already derived in the posted lecture notes. Going to class is not needed to do well on the homeworks and exams. Just memorize the lecture notes.

Aug 2014

I would like to respectfully disagree with the review before me in a couple regards. Martin Uribe was a good professor and I definitely learnt a lot in this class. I agree that Martin's voice is pretty monotone, but if you pay attention to what he is saying you will have a grasp of the material that will be sufficient ammunition for his exams (which were easy, assuming you had bothered to learn the material). Martin moves quite slowly, and he will do multiple cases of the same model to ensure you know what is going on. Martin's class uses calculus, but this shouldn't catch anyone off guard, given that calculus 1 is the pre requisite along with principles. The only calculus needed is knowing how to take pretty simple derivatives. No calculus is needed for the exams since you can memorize the derivatives in the models for the exams. Anyone who says Martin doesn't explain his formulae is flat out wrong. I just went back through my notebook and I have an economic explanation written under every boxed formula. He does mathematical proofs of his formulas but these are not needed for his exams, they are to show you why the formulas are considered good models. Once an equation is proven he focuses heavily on the economic intuition, which is true on his problem sets as well. He always explains why his solution to examples make economic sense as well. Last but not least, Martin cares a lot about the concepts underlying the models rather than blindly using a model. Often on problem sets he will modify an assumption in a model and ask questions, so you have to understand the model enough to decipher what this change means. Long story short if you pay attention in lecture (or read his thorough lecture notes) you should be fine. I skipped most of Carlos' recitations and ended up with a fabulous grade in the class regardless since Martin moves quite slowly. For the sake of full disclosure I will note that I am in SEAS, since people think this matters. I will also note that I got my grade while taking 5 other SEAS classes and plenty of extra curriculars, not because I'm a genius, but because the workload isn't that high. Take from that what you will.

Apr 2014

I would have to say that Dr. Uribe is the complete opposite of a great approachable professor. His teaches style is like talking to a brick wall in a monotone voice. He drones on with a succession of derivations and equations on the blackboard without ever letting students appreciate the big picture. Contrary to what a reviewer wrote below, Uribe's accent is not at all the issue: His intonation and demeanor is. There is absolutely zero engagement with the class. He does not pause to emphasize important points, and refuses to answer any questions during class (even though only about 40 students show up). By the time you ask him after his lecture, most of what he's said has gone in one ear and out the other. If you want to have an enthusiastic, entertaining professor who illuminates and contextualizes the numerous equations you will have to learn, avoid Dr. Uribe with a ten foot pole. Uribe is undoubtedly an expert in his field, but is too absent-minded to effectively share his lessons with a room full of undergraduates. If you can motivate yourself to regurgitate the equations that Uribe writes on the board and translate them into intuitive concepts, you might get something out of the lectures. I, like many others, learn everything from Carlos' recitation. Carlos is hands down the best TA any student could possibly have. His teaching style is everything that Uribe is not able to do. He is personally invested in his students and actually wants us to succeed. I definitely would have stuck with a major in econ if Carlos had been the excellent professor and Dr. Uribe had been demoted to being a mediocre TA.

Apr 2012

Professor Uribe is the best professor I've had so far at Columbia. Yes he is a quiet man, but he is completely approachable and always tries to add little jokes and anecdotes to his lectures so that his students can connect to the subject matter or at least get a laugh.He made me learn to love macroeconomics. There were 9 problem sets which were all really easy (average ranged from like an 85%-95%). Carlos was AMAZING. Best TA in the world and I really hope that Columbia hires him right after hes done with his PhD. He is so caring of his students, teaches everything step-by-step, and does anything to accommodate your needs. His recitations are indispensable so GO to them, you wont regret wasting the 90 minutes each week. He's such a sweet and handsome man.

Feb 2012

Uribe is completely useless. As usual with professors here at Columbia his accent is completely impenetrable. On top of this he lectures quietly and without any confidence making his class impossible to stay awake during. He does nothing interesting and essentially ruins Macroeconomics. His problem sets also serve no purpose, they are essentially busy work, filled with mindless number crunching and vague confusing directions which make them time consuming and frustrating but inutile for learning the material.