Variable Topics Research Seminars: International Development Studies -- Senior Seminar
Winter 2023 - For the IDS senior capstone, I was a bit let down. It's not hard, you'll choose a week to present on the readings, and then lead class discussion. There isn't a penalty for participants to not do the readings & the class is fairly disorganized, so it can be kind of painful to get through 3 hours this way. Then there's a pretty hefty research paper requirement at the end, the subject of which is very open-ended. Overall wish this class had more structure and I ultimately felt like it was a bit of a waste of time. If you want to learn something new, take a different prof. Apter himself is an interesting person, I wish he had tied some more of his own research/insight into engaging lectures to help us build skills to go out in the world as development scholars. Instead he would sometimes give a lecture, sometimes join discussions if no one else would. Much more engaging in OH.
Fall 2018 - Dr. Lorena Fuentes was a wonderful human being and an eloquent lecturer to say the least. However, I do feel it necessary to include to recommend future students to NOT take this class. Although her material was very interesting, she offered little to no guidance on the final 16-page research paper that was required to complete the course. I understand that this is a senior seminar and I am more than capable of writing and conducting my own research. However, she chose to leave to Chile for two weeks, of a very short 10-week term, to conduct her own business, where she had limited access to email and was not responsive. This is not the behavior of a professor that wants their students to succeed and for that reason, she is not a good candidate to take this incredibly dense class with.