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sucky professor. i took this class as a GE hoping i'd learn something, but i end up not learning anything except the stuff i read in the book.
pay no attention to the previous review..
here's my review of the course...
read the book = get an A
Prof. Garcia's teaching philosophy seems to be love it/hate it deal, so I'll tell you exactly what the class is like, and you form your own opinion...
Prof. Garcia teaches and tests you directly from the text...he only strays by going slightly out of order in the chapters he covers, and he omits certain things (mainly the biological details of the subject)...but he is very clear from day 1 that he will go by the book...
what this means is that lecture is pretty much optional...there is too many details to cover 40 pages of text in 75 minutes of lecturing, so you don't really learn anything new that you couldn't learn by just reading the book...
grading is based on 2 midterms...there is no final...the 2nd midterm is held on the last day of instruction...each midterm is 50 MP questions...questions are taken pretty much directly from the text...if you read all of the chapters carefully (meaning probably more than once, and not just the night before the midterm), then you should do fine...if you start studying at least 1 week ahead of the midterm, then you should get an A easily...just memorize the key terms, the causes, symptoms, basic statistics, and treatments (and how successful the treatments are)...that's basically what he tests...also, the "character"-based examples are similar to some questions, in that he makes up characters, describing their symptoms, and you say what they have...the slides he puts up are also helpful for reviewing everything...
he curves the grades as follows: he computes the average score, and then if the average grade is below a B- (meaning it's below the 80-82 range), then he'll shift everyone's grade up until the average is a B- (in the 80-82 range)...if the average score is already a B- or higher, than he just grades on a straight 90s = As, 80s = Bs, etc...
bottom line: if you really study the book carefully, then you should have no problem getting an A...if you're looking for a professor that will spell out everything for you in lecture, or you for some reason cannot read a text book, then I wouldn't recommend a course with him...
I do agree with the previous comment about him. There were a couple of ambiguous questions (that could have more than one correct answers) on the midterm, but instead of being fair and taking it out completely like most professors would, he just gave points to those that got it right, which bumped up the average significantly.
There was only one midterm and one final, 50% each. Since the midterm and final are weighted the same, there is little room for improvement if you mess up on the midterm.
Overall, he's a nice professor, but I don't think he knows much about the topic. All he does is read the slides and whenever a student asked a question, his response most of the time was "i'm not sure, go read the book." He never has a direct answer to the questions and 99% of the time uses "sorta kinda" with his incomplete responses. Also, his test overall is okay, better than what I've heard from other students about their abnormal psych prof.
Horrible Professor, AVOID AT ALL COSTS. He does nothing in the class but read the lecture notes and he learns as much from them as we do. If someone asks a question in class, he won't know. Slides are posted 2-3 weeks after each respective lecture is given.
He will tell you that he would like you to know the concepts and main ideas for the tests, but that is just a bunch of baloney. His tests are right from the book, if you miss ONE sentence in the book you will get a question wrong. There is a ridiculous amount of material to cover. Garcia skims over it in lec ture so quickyl that does not absorb.
Do not take this class unless you have a photographic memory.
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