Based on 11 Users
There are no grade distributions available for this professor yet.
Sorry, no enrollment data is available.
Since his lectures did not align with the reading, the readings tended to be unclear. But fortunately, he is an approachable guy and so I attended many of his office hours to clarify what was said in class and was able to get an A. His midterm and final are formatted the same way and the questions themselves are not tricky.
Took Political Geography in Spring 09. Readings were on the heavy side but not impossible, but you did have to read since the lectures were structured around them. Sivak is approachable, nice guy but as a lecturer, he's a bit unclear. I think it's the way he explains things but I typically walked out of the lecture, having a rough concept of what's he's talking about but never entirely sure. Definitely go to lecture, or else you won't be able to study for the tests. He breaks down his lectures, which helps, and roughly connects it back to the reading but I think you really need a firm grasp of urban planning or general geography in order to call this an easy class. The tests are in-class essays, which limits how many he can assign. He's a fair grader, but there's no curve. If you take this class, be ready to go to every lecture, take notes, and do the readings.
This class was hard! Prof. Sivak is a very awkward guy but a great professor overall. There are a lot of readings in which he expects you to know the key points well. The lectures are well organized and insightful.
I thought I could half-ass this class and get an A but I ended up with a B overall. This isn't a class for slackers.I hated the readings and I hated all the materials he expected us to know. It was like 5 classes in one.
Geog 140: Political Geography
Man I hate politics. I hated doing readings for this class and I hated going to lecture. But I got an A on the midterm and a B on a paper that I turned in two days late with a 10% reduction, meaning I probably got an A on it. It wasn't me--the TA was Rob and he is a really approachable guy who grades easy and Sivak seems to grade easy as well. I didn't do much reading (basically at all, except for the paper), but I did go to about 75% of the lectures and focused my studying on that. His exams were the same for both the midterm and final. Blue book essays, pick two out of 5 or 6 topics, so as long as you are solid on a few key points and authors/readings, you're good for the exams. He set the midterm and final in class, though, so that means you have 50 minutes to write two essays. The paper was 35%, the midterm 25%, and the final 40%. Sivak himself is awkward in lecture, yes--but the 50 minute time limit makes him (and the topic of politics) bearable, and going to lecture is most definitely worth your while.