Professor

Michael Shin

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Easiness N/A/ 5
Clarity N/A/ 5
Workload N/A/ 5
Helpfulness N/A/ 5
Easiness 2.4/ 5
Clarity 3.2/ 5
Workload 1.9/ 5
Helpfulness 2.8/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Winter 2020 - This class was a ride and a requirement for my major. I would not recommend it to someone who just needs a GE because this is an intensive course. If you are interested in making maps and GIS, this is a great class to start with to tests all of the basis GIS waters there are. This was my first onlinen course, but I chose to do an in-person lab and it made the class more tolerable and manageable. It is not too difficult to get an B+ or A-, but if you do everything correctly and take the time to do a few more extra things, you can receive an A/A+. The WEEKLY FORUM posts are generally written responses with the occasional photo attachment to a prompt. Many times we had to read up on a subject and write about our thoughts and respond to fellow classmates. Easy and practically guaranteed 10% of your grade if you do all of them on time. The WEEKLY QUIZZES would ask questions from the informational videos the professor posts and also information from the textbook. You do not need to buy the textbook because it can be found online and at the library. They would open on Monday and be due Sunday night with UNLIMITED ATTEMPTS between that time period, BUT there is a 90 MINUTE WAIT TIME IN BETWEEN ATTEMPTS, so if you are doing them at the last minute and you didn't get a score you wanted, you are out of luck. Also, after each attempt, you only get the score and NOT which questions you missed. So these quizzes do take a good chunk of time to complete. My regret is not getting a 100 on each one because they are easier points than the weekly assignments. WEEKLY ASSIGNMENTS- Weekly assignments are TIME CONSUMING. No surprise there. I am bad with technology, but the tutorials posted on CCLE give you step by step instructions on how to complete your project in order to get a standard outcome. There are not too difficult to follow, but it is best to work on two monitors or a split screen in order to play the CCLE video alongside the QGIS software. WHAT SUCKS- Even if you do the entire assignment completely correct, you will only receive 80% of the points. I missed out on points to get a 100 on each assignment because I could have made the assignments more aesthetically appealing, or add more extra data. I understand that this is a part of what it takes to get a 100, but I didn't know how to do the things the other students were doing to their maps in order to receive that 100. ALSO, the professor almost never responds to your emails. Your only source of help is mainly your TAs on the weekdays. There is also a Piazza forum for students, but mainly everyone is unresponsive to everyone else's issues or they are just as confused. FINAL PROJECT- I spent countless hours, leading to days, on my final project. It had become optional in light of the situation, but I wanted the chance to boost my grade to an A. As long as you do everything you can for this project and truly do your research and make more aesthetically appealing visuals of your maps and data, I believe you will be fine. I learned how important map-making is in our world. Now that I am reflecting on the content of this course and all of the skills that I learned, it makes the class seem worthwhile. Now every time I see a map online, I get an idea of how that map was made and how map makers still have an important job in today's society. Also, all of the assignments we did in this course can be put into a personal professional portfolio. Grade breakdown: 5%- Syllabus Quiz 10%- Weekly Forum Posts 50%- Weekly Assignments 20%- Final Project 15%- Weekly Quizzes
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Overall Rating 3.4
Easiness 2.4/ 5
Clarity 3.3/ 5
Workload 2.3/ 5
Helpfulness 2.3/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Absolutely horrible. I'm sure Shin as the ability to be a good teacher, but AVOID taking Cartography until they figure out what they're doing the curriculum. Shin is trying to make this an online class, which means several things: 1) The focus is on WEB mapping. NOT cartography. I have learned NOTHING about cartography in this class apart from the blatantly obvious. Most of the class is on HTML, CSS, and Javascript. Not at all what I signed up for, and a complete waste of my interest in the subject. We covered ONE word of the course description, if that gives you a better idea. 2) Class time is spent quietly figuring out the new lab, as you likely finished the previous one the night before. There was NO instruction. Everything was done independently. Shin's excuse for the lack of instruction: "in the real world, you'll need to figure things out on your own." ...we know that, Shin. That's why we pay money to take classes BEFORE we enter the professional world. 3) The curriculum is a disaster. I know that many professors/teachers work on the curriculum during the quarter, based on the progress the class makes, etc. That said, there was NO plan for this course, and without any obvious goals, it was extremely difficult to accumulate a skillset that you could draw upon as the quarter progressed. "Everything is important" and "I can't say what you'll need to know in the future" are complete lies, and nobody appreciated being fed those lines over and over. A good teacher is willing to put effort into curriculum development, ESPECIALLY when exposing students to experimental curriculum. Shin put no thought whatsoever into the curriculum of this course, and when he did, it was too little too late. Although Shin made himself available outside of class hours, his "concern for student learning" should have manifested itself in hours spent making the class time valuable before the quarter started. 4) You WILL spend hours and hours working on the projects outside of class. This time commitment is to be expected when taking a procedures course. However, there were many "lab working hours" scheduled outside of class time, which (I heard) were more useful than actual class hours. Unfortunately for the students busy with work or families, they were impossible to attend. If Shin was going to be useful, it would have been more effective to be so during scheduled class hours. Overall, I was incredibly disappointed with Shin and with Geography 167. If I could, I would ask for a refund on the money I spent to take this course. I feel like Shin completely neglected his duties as a professor and I'm exceedingly annoyed that my interest in the subject had to suffer for it. **This class did have one redeeming element, and that was the TA, Nick Burkhart. He was wonderful and if you get the chance to work with him, do it!
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