Joint Research Colloquia in Invertebrate Model Systems


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Overall Rating 2.8
Easiness 1.8/ 5
Clarity 2.5/ 5
Workload 1.5/ 5
Helpfulness 3.5/ 5
Most Helpful Review
I took Dr. Merriam for LS4 (there wasn't a choice for LS4 in the tab). Although many students, including me, noticed many instances where he tried to help us and acted "nice" towards us, overall his lecturing style, organization, and communication skills were disappointing for someone that our parents/we are paying money to. First of all, his lectures, although entertaining in the 1st few weeks, will fool you in their simplicity because after the 1st midterm many people who thought he was a harmless "old santa/grandpa" figure, felt like the exams were unfair. The wording was very confusing. There are typos, but most of all, there was one exam question where NONE of the TA's could answer because it involved knowledge of a very minute detail in the textbook. For genetics, most people DO read the textbook, but I never was expected to know such trivial details for any class I've EVER taken before. Second of all, his "clinics"/office hours do help you, but you have to sit through him lecturing you about useless stuff (arrows, education, ethics) for a good hour until he finally gets around to answering your question. I spent quite a lot of my precious Monday, Tuesday, and Friday afternoons/mornings in these clinics, along with 20+ other students clawing for the professor's and TA's attention. I would say you need to spend ~ 2X the amount of lecture time in office hours to even have a chance at competing for a decent grade. Also, although the curve is nice for LS 4, beware of uber-competitive pre-meds that will take your eye out. I encountered this guy who told another person "you should know that hemophilia and colorblindness are X-linked by now." Third of all, his final has a lot of multiple choice because it's easier for his TA's and him to grade. Professor M said in class "MC's are hard for me to write because I have to think really hard about all the wrong answers and how to make it harder...." Fourth, I am not a sadistic pre-med who got a bad grade. I did well in the class, but it ruined my quarter. Gluck with Dr. Merriam.
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