Most Helpful Review
The previous reviews are pretty accurate. I honestly enjoyed this class and I highly recommend it. The class structure was fair and reasonable. Dr. Loo himself is actually pretty funny and he always tried to make his lectures interesting with little anecdotes. He would gear lectures towards topics that actually interested him and were actually useful, so it never got too boring. You walk away from this class feeling like you actually learned something useful as a future chemist (even if it is mainly mass spec).
The midterm was really long and our class average was super low (55%). I bombed the midterm but I admit it wasn’t necessarily too difficult, he just expects you to remember a lot of little details from lecture, so you basically have to memorize the whole powerpoints.
Even with my low midterm I got an A in the class thanks to the lab reports. The reports make up the majority of your grade, and they will also take up the majority of your time. Lab reports are due every week and trust me, do not underestimate how long it will take you to finish them. I actually pulled my first all-nighters trying to get these done. They’re not super complicated but they do ask for a lot, and the TAs have pretty high standards for how they should be written. The labs are actually pretty interesting, and the lab work and data analysis itself was pretty quick. My TAs were absolutely incredible and I am very grateful that they made the lab experience so smooth.
I took this class Winter 2020, so week 10 and finals week were cut short by COVID. He ended up canceling our final group presentation, extended our final group report deadline, and gave us 24 hours to do a straightforward open-note final, which all showed me that Dr. Loo is a pretty understanding guy. Wish I got a chance to talk to him because he seemed really chill. I knew many people who avoided this class because of the grade distribution, but if you have even the slightest interest in learning instrumentation, I think you’ll be happy that you took this class.