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Professor Gunewardena made an expected course interesting and very relatable. Her lectures weren't mundane as those of many other professors who just like to hear themselves talk... and I looked forward to them even at 9 in the morning. Although she gave a lot to read and the material wasn't exactly like reading your favorite book while sipping on an ice coffee, she did a great job deciphering all the "development jargon", as she called it, to us during lecture. Thus, she ensured that we actually UNDERSTOOD everything that we read and not just expect us to take all of it because we are "college students." And if you are ever have an issue, you can always count on a lot of help during her office hour! She is very personable and friendly and is willing to help you out with everything! Team Nandini!
I took IDS 191-Disaster Capitalism in the summer 2009. I really enjoyed the class but the midterm was very confusing. I think the seminar format is a great idea and really got all of us to read. However, the lecture left me a little ill-prepared for the mid-term. (Most of the other students did really poorly, too.) It was disappointing because the subject matter was really interesting. By the end of the course I think that most people had a good grip on the general ideas introduced in the class. Some students struggled because she is demanding in the 191 classes because it's a SENIOR SEMINAR! We were asked to do a fair amount of reading and then do analysis. She asks every student to share original ideas, based in the readings, EVERY time you meet. It's not hard work but one is asked to stay on top of it. Be prepared to do a bit of work and thinking. With all of this is mind, Prof. G is very fair and not out to get anybody in a bind. Meet with her in office hours, find a study buddy and talk about the class. Lectures are a bit "stream of consciousness" but nevertheless interesting and engaging if you're interested in the subject matter. If not, don't take this class. You'll suffer.