Fundamentals of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Fall 2020 - This professor is new and this impacted how the class was structured, as I felt that the professor did not reach a reasonable pacing until later in the class (he would go fairly fast in the beginning where it was not possible to take detailed notes of everything). I did feel like I learned a fair amount about chemical engineering and the thought processes that we need to learn to succeed in our field. The homeworks were in "report" style, where you had to almost draw a diagram or description of every problem (usually around 4-5 problems each homework), restate each question in your own words, and state any assumptions you had to make for your solution. These homeworks took a large amount of time to complete and the pdfs I handed in usually amounted to 12-18 pages of written solutions. The first two exams for this class (the two midterms) were poorly structured to the point where it was nearly impossible to complete everything in the given time limit. The second exam was slightly better in this aspect, we had more time but the exam was still extremely hard (average was in the 40s). However, by the final exam the professor got a lot better at exam design since the final was extremely reasonable difficulty-wise and more reasonable to be completed within a time limit (yet we were given 24 hours). Overall, the professor improved over the course and I definitely believe you will learn a lot if you pay attention and be diligent in your studies.
Fall 2018 - Many reviews here from previous years describe this class as not too bad once you mastered the material and that's not wrong. But regardless of those reviews, remember that this class is THE ChemE weeder class and you'll be surprised at how bad of an end grade you can get. Monbouquette has complete control over how he wants to distribute the grades - for our year the percentage of actual A's given was somewhere around 10% of the class which is significantly lower than other years because it was probably judged based on the fact that the final exam was ridiculously hard and had an average of near 50%, which he was probably disappointed by. Beyond that expect a not-so-engaging lecture with endless examples of how to do endless balances in time-consuming problems that take endless time to complete, especially the MATLAB assignment which he gives you despite most ChemE's having zero MATLAB experience - this assignment will take a very long time, and you'll have only a week to do it if it was like our year. TL; DR: Weeder class, not that easy, grading depends on Monbouquette's opinion of class, material isn't terrible but super time consuming.
Fall 2019 - Just a heads up, CH-ENGR-100 is NOT a class taught solely by a single professor. For our quarter, we had around five different professors lecture across the span of ten weeks, each on their own specialty. As such, I will only comment only on the structure of the class and Professor Rahardianto himself. The major of your grades will be based around two midterms and a single final exam. In between are weekly homework assignments and quizzes in your discussions. The homework assignments, while not difficult, are in fact time consuming. It would serve you well to invest some time in learning Excel and Matlab in order to simplify your homework and finish it a lot quicker (a lot of people complained about taking 10+ hours to finish the homework, but if you're tech savvy, you can shave that down to 4 hours like me). It's still a time commitment, so make sure to start your homework early. The quizzes are relatively easy; simply go over the lecture slides for the week before your discussion and look at vocabulary and key equations, and you'll do fine. The midterms and final are very straightforward and similar to your homework. However, you are required to think critically, as expected of an engineer; the majority of the questions can be easily reasoned through even without prior knowledge, and generous amounts of partial credit is given. As long as you do your homework, and ACTUALLY UNDERSTAND IT, you'll ace every exam. The lectures themselves vary quite a bit in terms of quality, depending on the lecturing professor. I will only discuss Professor Rahardianto for this review; Professor Rahardianto is a new professor, and thus isn't exactly the best lecturer. However, he is very willing to help his students and provide clarifications, and is empathetic and flexible with assignments. I found his lectures best when you have a laptop on your lap opened to the textbook, which would provide supplementary information while he is lecturing. Don't worry too much about taking notes; he always posts the slides on CCLE afterwards. Overall, I found this class to be mildly challenging and definitely rewarding. This is basically a required class for all chemical engineers, and does give a good impression of what chemical engineering entails.
Professor Tang is pretty awesome and his TAs (Wei and Yanran) are also top notch. Fall 2011 was his first time teaching Chem Eng 100 and I think so far (finals next week) he has done an great job. Lectures: Definitely go to these. While 90% of the time he just goes through examples and problems from the book, sometimes he does examples that aren't from the book (like old exam questions etc) or he'll say things like "I really like this problem" which is a big hint that he'll put some form of the example in a midterm question. I would also suggest reading the material before class as some of the later chapters (4, 6, and 9) get confusing, and then ask questions in class (don't be afraid to speak up!). TA Discussions: They usually just ask if anyone has any questions on the homework and then set up the problem for you if anyone asks for a specific problem to be done. While some people try to get free answers out of the TAs to homework problems they haven't done yet, the better approach is to attempt the homework before discussion and then ask the questions you are unsure about (set up or how to even start). Also, the TAs are pretty hot, so they're easy to pay attention to and worth waking up on Friday morning to go see. Professor and TA Office Hours: Definitely go to these when you're confused or have questions about lecture material or the homework, everyone is very nice in OH and it is to your benefit that Professor Tang and the TAs know you by name and face. Alternatively, they have this e-mail address set up for the class that you can mail questions to and get replies pretty quickly. This is a very nice perk that I haven't seen in any other class and would suggest you use it whenever you're between their office hours or the weekend. Homework: Very fair problems, rarely do you see a problem that you're like "... wtf?" on. Also, the homework policy is that you can work in groups of 4 and turn in 1 set of homework between the 4 of you, which is an excellent policy because then all of the slackers and dgaf-ers leech on to their friends' homework and never do the problems by themselves and then get fubar'd on the exams and lower the curve for you! It seems like everyone and their mothers has the solution manual to the textbook, so as someone who doesn't have the solution manual (and does the homework), this works out tremendously in your favor as people just copy the solution manual and proceed to get fubar'd by the exams. Midterms: These are very fair and partial credit grading on them is very generous. If you have truthfully done the homework and understand it, you should at the very least be able to get the average as the majority of the exam questions are similar to homework problems (although they might not look like it initially). I can't say anything about the Final since it's next week, but hopefully it'll be just as reasonable as the Midterms were. Grading: I believe getting average in the class gets you in the B/B- range, so it is definitely possible to walk away with an A in the class if you study hard. In the end, I recommend you take Professor Tang's class over anyone else who might teach it in the future. If you put in the work it'll give you (or so I believe) a great foundation for future classes.