All Ratings and Reviews for Juana Sanchez
Attention: Please read. Juana Sanchez is single-handedly the worst professor I've ever had at UCLA. Of course after 20 years of teaching, the rumors about how awful she is would make one initially hesitant to enroll in the class. However, she was the only professor Spring 2018, and I had to endure it with her. To give you some context, there were over 100 kids enrolled week 1, and during the final there were only 53 kids. OVER 50 KIDS DROPPED THIS COURSE. If this doesn't scare you, please keep reading. During the first lecture on week 1, we were given a pop quiz that counted for a grade. On her syllabus, she makes "participation" worth 8% , and the final worth 35%. If you chose, you can opt out of the in-class participation exercises and make your final 43%. I'm telling you now, this is a TRAP. And it was the first of many I experienced over 10 weeks. Do not drop the participation to make your final worth more, because the final is so anxiety-inducing. To give you an idea of how awful the homework assignments were, she would make you copy-and-paste code from R into a CCLE portal (instead of a rendered HTML or PDF like a normal professor). But if your code had ANY errors at all, she gives you a 0. In terms of the exams, Sanchez puts WAY TOO MANY QUESTIONS for anyone to finish in 50 minutes. Her testing policies are neurotic, and yes, she will read every word on your cheat sheet to make sure it follows ALL of her arbitrary rules. The midterm exams (each worth 23.5% of your grade) are a mix of MC, written response, and analyzing code. She will ask you to read through a page of code and point out ALL of the errors in the code AND fix them. (How was anyone supposed to do this??) Also, proofs are not off limits, and she won't hesitate to ask you for a proof on the exam! (Eyeroll) When it comes to exams, she also gives you the most inconvenient matricies to multiply. We had to multiply a (4x4) and a (4x1) BY HAND. To make it worse, each value had three decimal places. Perhaps the most annoying aspect of the exam is that she is very stingy with partial credit. Each exam question is only ONE POINT. So each exam is /15 points. (If you get two MC question wrong, you're already at a B, and it's worth 23.5%). To put things into further perspective, a 95% is a solid A. 94 or below is an A- . I bet you're wondering how the final exam could possibly be worse. Well, to answer that question: IT WAS ENTIRELY CODING. 100% of the final exam was done in R in a computer lab where we had to code algorithms to data sets she gave us. If you are not a strong programmer- this class is not for you. The final was open note (the only redeeming quality of this class), but the exam averages were awful throughout the quarter. The exam averages were: Exam 1) 57%, Exam 2) 61% , Final) 61% . Personally, I did above avg on one exam, slightly below avg on the other, and scored pretty well on the final, but somehow ended with a B- and do not think I deserved it at all. The smartest friends I had in that class also ended with a B- and I do not know anyone who earned a higher grade. 25/53 kids failed the final exam, so there is a high chance that ~50% of this class received a C+ or lower (just a rough estimate given my personal exam scores). If you are still somehow not convinced she is the WORST professor on this campus, keep reading buddy! On top of these awful exams and homeworks, she also is EXTREMELY patronizing and rude during lecture. She walks around the room while she lectures and actually kicked backpacks to walk through the aisles. I'm not exaggerating when I say almost every set of slides / worksheets she gave us had errors in them. Her lecturing style is very unorganized also. She scribbles all over the board illegibly, and does not post her handwritten notes online. There were SEVERAL instances where we would get emails from her saying "found an error in the notes, please correct it" and sometimes she wouldn't even tell us what the error was. She also frequently keeps you over the 50 minute lecture time. The only reason I got through this class was because the TA was decent. For someone who has been teaching for 20 years at UCLA, I find this all absolutely unacceptable. There is no amount of psychological counseling that can help one cope with the bullshit she puts you through for ten weeks. Absolutely avoid this class at all costs. If you are thinking about taking any other class with her, keep this in mind. She truly does not give a FUCK about any of her students- even the ones who show up nearly in tears to office hours. So glad I'm done with this class. See you in hell, Juana.
Half of the junior years who were supposed to take 102B class on this spring quarter jumped straight out to 102C from 102A because of her. There were 105 spots for this class but only 50~60 enrollments filled. I've already heard notorious rumors of her but signed up for this class. She personally treats her students rudely as well as her poorly constructed exams & homeworks ruin your GPA.
In her lectures, she points out not to use smartphone, laptop, and any electronic device during the lecture. The point is, she points out EVERYTIME when someone uses them. It was so distracting she spent 3~5 mins of her lectures on pointing out someone not to use their laptop.
I got my points off on my homeworks for all the ridiculous reasons. Like I lost 10% of my homework scores for not putting ############### sign between questions, another 10% for not saying this is confidence interval(The question was only asking about the mean and the confidence interval). I used to lose my points for not having well-explained comments rather than wrong codes, but her homeworks have full of typos even an important formula such as gamma distribution. It was pretty painful to see losing decent amount of credits for these kind of trivial reasons.
I believe her exams were the worst. Given 50 minutes for the midterms, we were asked to solve time-consuming questions like getting the inverse of 4x4 matrix w/ decimals. What is the point of calculating the inverse of 4x4 matrix w/ numbers like 1.616, -3.7534, 5.6134 for this class??? The students all failed not because of understanding the concepts for statistical programming, but unnecessarily time consuming matrix and derivative problems on the test. She is more interested in failing her students than teaching computational statistics.
The thing I love about Professor Sanchez is that she is the best at making concepts easy to understand:
(directly from 02/20/2015 lecture)
SANCHEZ: So, would you say that the people that are in the ‘college or higher’ group are independent of the people that are in the ‘high school or lower’ group? Do you think they are independent? Yes or no? Be, be courageous.
STUDENT: (shy) Yes.
SANCHEZ: Yes, yes. That’s it. Yeah. No, they are not. They are independent, right? No. They are not independent. Right? What did you say. Yes or no. No. You said yes they are independent, or yes they are not?
SANCHEZ: Yes. They are independent. No. Yes. They are not independent, okay? They are not independent. I mean, sorry. Yes. They are independent.
Fuck this class.
Professor Sanchez is infamous among the stats professor and I took her class knowing it was going to be a very rough experience. My expectation for her was low as yours will probably be, so surprisingly she did exceed my expectations. She is not as bad as other reviews describe as long as you follow her "rules".
Some things to note:
1) She takes attendance every single class. Sometimes twice every class! Sometimes it's on a sign in sheet, sometimes she roll calls, sometimes she tells you to turn in a in class exercise, sometimes she calls on random student's name to answer a question, sometimes it's all of the above.
2) There are a lot of in class participation points throughout the quarter based on the correctness of your answer and you will most likely not be given much time for those. However she is nice enough to let you drop the lowest two.
3) She assigns official homework once every two weeks. BUT, there is often smaller, shorter take home exercises that she will assign in class(and she may or may not post on CCLE about it). So pay attention in class!!
4) There are two quizzes in addition to one midterm and one final. She takes these assessments very seriously and will write you many many many bullet points on rules to follow. FOLLOW THEM! DO NOT OPEN YOUR BACKPACK WHEN YOU ARRIVE IN THE EXAMINATION ROOM. One time she was very annoyed at a particular student who looked through his backpack inside the classroom before she handed out the assessment. She yelled at him in front of the whole class and order him to sit at the very front.
5) Homework needs to be turned in within 10 minutes of starting class or else she will begin to deduct points. Try to turn it in BEFORE CLASS BEGINS, or else your P(getting yelled at ^ humiliated) = 1.
Despite my comments above, as long as you follow her rules and pay attention in class, have a decent TA, attend office hours, you will do just fine get at least a B+. She gets through a lot of material and you will feel like you've mastered a lot of material after her class. You learn a lot, more than other more "easy" stats 100a professors. And a bonus, she is quite entertaining, the way she talks, her sarcasm, and her occasional analogy of probability and life/death is quite accurate. She is very intimidating, but deep down, I believe Juana truly cares for her students.
Shout out to Lenny for being an amazing TA!
I don't understand why the Statistics department still chooses to retain Juana Sanchez as a lecturer for twenty years now in spite of the many complaints students have made about her. She is without a doubt the most ineffective lecturer I have had the unfortunate chance to encounter at UCLA.
Let me give you a rundown of just how horrible this class.
1) Lecture Notes
She assigns a bundle of lecture notes that is plagued with mistakes and typos. She is so severely disorganized that in week 8, she gave us a handout and told us to toss the one she gave in the last class altogether because it every page was filled with typos.
She made a "participation" thing optional for students who don't want their final grade to account for ~40% of his/her final grade. She requires us to "participate" in almost every lecture. The amount of "participation" she makes her students go through on top of the homework as he assigns (I'll get back to that later) is ridiculous. Some participations, such as the one that requires you to look for the k-means, can take 1-2 hours. Also, she is very vain with grading. In one unfortunate occasion, I wrote Var(Cx) and just started calculating the variance-covariance matrix. I got 0.7/1.0 even though the answer was right because I didn't write Var(Cx) again. I asked her for my 0.3 back since technically the answer is correct and I showed her all the steps, her response was "0.7 is not a bad grade".
Her exams are the worst. The amount of material she wants to cover in a 50 minutes examination is ridiculous.
She had multiple choice questions for both midterm 1 and 2 and required us to "give an explanation" to our choice. My explanation for the 2nd midterm wasn't enough so she ducked 0.5 points off even though my answer was correct.
She also makes us go through lines of codes and highlight things. I was unsure of what she wanted us to highlight for midterm 1 for the confidence interval code. I rewrote the section of the code manually. Turns out, she just wanted the numerical solution.
She held a cumulative midterm for the second midterm, which she held, a day after Memorial Day weekend ON week 9. My friends and I thought the questions would build on each other, I mean that's what professors usually do? Instead, she explicitly tests us on materials before midterm 1, EVEN though she also explicitly tests us on post-midterm 1 material. I am unsure of what she is trying to achieve by employing this technique.
She made us "Code" on the final and required us to code about ~4/5 questions in 2 hours. It was lengthy, difficult and time consuming.
Side note: In week 10, she introduced us to Gibbs sampling/MCMC/etc. 2/5 of the final examination questions required us to code the material she introduced in week 10, which she failed to explain and give us sufficient exercises on.
Every other Statistics professor at UCLA that I have encountered require us to Knit our homework to pdf/html. Juana Sanchez, is unfortunately, an outlier. She requires us to use an Rscript and copy paste our code to CCLE. On top of the difficult coding assignments that she just throws at us, she would require us to comment on everything and have it compiled with NO ERROR. She doesn't even give us partial credit on anything with an error. Well, if she wants an error-less chunk of code, why doesn't she implement a pdf/html submission???
5) Final Grade
The final grade my friends and I got in this class was ridiculous. Some of my friends "aced" the final by scoring way above the curve and ended up with a B-. I scored right above the mean during the final, below the mean during the second midterm and above the mean for the second and ended up with a C. Does this mean 50% of the class got C or worse?? Isn't this a reflection of how she failed as an instructor?
Fun fact: 50% of the class dropped after midterm 1. But since she is the ONLY instructor for spring and it isn't offered again until Spring 2019, I had no choice but to endure her.
I could go on and on about how this class was the absolute worst for students' mental health and learning experience but I would like to move on with my life. I just wanted to say one more thing, I came to UCLA because I wanted to learn and was open to the idea of making mistakes. The material for 102B was actually interesting. I spent some of my free time reading about it. But her way of teaching makes it SO DIFFICULT to appreciate the material or take away anything meaningful from the class.
Juana Sanchez fails to embody the UCLA spirit and has failed us for an instructor. It is such a pity that UCLA's Statistics Department has tolerated her for 20 years now.
She's not as bad as people say! If you follow instructions and don't mess around, you'll be fine in this class.
I think a lot of the bad reviews just come from miscommunication/misunderstandings. There's definitely somewhat of a language/cultural gap between Prof Sanchez and her students, but if you treat her with respect, she will do the same. She is honestly very nice towards her students and cares about our success.
I emailed her multiple times and she was always willing to help and added words of encouragement and niceties in each of them that a lot of the reviewers below won't tell you about.
She is somewhat disorganized and goes extremely fast in lecture! Pay attention or get left behind (I often found myself in this situation multiple times). The homework is easy and can be finished in a couple hours at most, but her quizzes and tests often are too long to finish (in my opinion) without rushing super fast. Practice proofs! That's what separated me from getting a way better grade in this class.
The book isn't really necessary. You need it a few times in the class when her homework questions (maybe one or two per fifteen question assignment) ask you to go to the book for reference, but it's not worth 60-70 bucks, just go look at it rq in the Science and Engineering Library.
If anything, don't procrastinate taking your Stats 100a class because Sanchez is the only professor taking it (i almost did because of her reviews), just push through and you'll be fine.
Stats 100A is not supposed to be that hard a class. Content-wise it's not the worst, but Professor sanchez makes it way harder than it needs to be. She grades on an absolute scale where an A is 95+ and the range for B+ is 88-89 but B is 80-87. She overloads us with work, there is always lengthy homework, participation quizzes or random participation assignments due. She basically had 3 midterms, although she calls 2 of them "formal quizzes" and even though they're easy on content, it's IMPOSSIBLE to finish them comfortably in time. Lengthy computations make it impossible to score well in these exams, and a couple points here and there can get you down by 3 grades. She's also extremely intimidating, and unnecessarily condescending. I respect that she wanted us to be thorough with the material, but she treats us as if Stats 100A is our only, and hardest class, and gives too much work. I took this class thinking how hard can she make 100A, but trust me, avoid it if you can.
Take Sanchez If:
-You learn better with structure and someone constantly keeping you in check
-Dont mind going to class
-Learn by practicing
-Want to learn the basics of probability really well
Don't Take Sanchez If:
-You prefer to cram the night before tests
-Care more about getting a slightly better grade than learning Stats
Her class isn't hard, you are just going to have to do a lot of problems. The upside is the night before each test you will barely have to study because Sanchez already made you sure you've done each problem literally 10 times.
> Overall, Professor Sanchez has some strict rules but they were easy to get the hang of and the class structure made it really easy to learn the material without outside study. The class would be best for people who learn well during lectures and are detail-oriented.
> I understand why students would be frustrated with Professor Sanchez, she has a lot of very strict rules and is a bit rude to students who break them. But I found that if you just follow what she says as best as possible (it is hard sometimes) she's a fine professor. The class was easy and I feel like I retained a lot of the information. When she was rude in class it was often the student who started it by complaining about one of her rules, so just do your best to follow them without complaining and you'll be fine.
> She takes attendance randomly in lecture but discussion section attendance counts for extra credit so it's still easy to get 100% attendance missing a few lectures.
> In terms of the lectures, she gets turned around sometimes but overall the slides themselves are very clear and follow the book exactly. She does multiple-choice questions in class with color cards which some students found stressful but it doesn't count for anything so it's really fine. I actually found those questions super helpful because between those and the homework assignments I found I didn't have to study much to do well on the tests.
> For the tests she lets you have a full front and back cheat sheet with all the formulas so as long as you understood the homework (which is exactly like the book example problems) you'll do well on them. The hardest part is remembering formatting and details like writing down labels for the sets and events.
Maybe I killed someone in my preexistence, and she was sent by Jesus to make me atone. I don't know what to say about her. Seriously, DON'T TAKE HER CLASS. I don't think there is any language in the world that can descript how bad her class is. Her homework is 100 times more difficult than climbing Mount Everest, I'd rather feed the pigs in some kind of yields. Her exams are one of the top 3 tortures in the United States, and the rests are the hw and watch her class video. She requires an attendance quiz. If your answers are wrong, you get 0 on participation. How should people suppose to know what she is saying with her horrible handwriting and get the quiz answers correct? And she doesn't do curve.
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