All Ratings and Reviews for Samuel John Cumming

Ratings

Bad
Overall 1.5
Good
Hard
Easiness of class 1.2
Easy
Heavy
Workload 1.3
Light
Not Clear
Clarity of professor 1.6
Clear
Not Helpful
Helpfulness of professor 1.7
Helpful
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Reviews

PHILOS 172, taken Fall 2018 Submitted April 3, 2019 Grade Received: DR

Worst professor/teacher I have ever had. He was the most confused and unclear person I have ever met. Half of his students wouldn’t show up because it wasn’t worth showing up to class. Don’t take a class by him. Save yourself the headache.

PHILOS 1 Submitted Nov. 30, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

[NOTE: I know it says that I took him for Philo 1, but I actually took him through my GE cluster (Mind over Matter) this year. The GE cluster was not one of the classes available on the drop down menu.]

Professor Cumming isn't that bad of a guy... When he's not teaching. He's an absolute horrible lecturer. Goes off on completely random tangents, repeats himself constantly, can't formulate sentences that make sense. On the first day I had him, he was literally in the middle of explaining the mind-body problem when he suddenly remembers something and goes "Oh, by the way..." and then starts talking about how he doesn't put words on his PowerPoint (He really doesn't, it's all pictures. It's the worst - what kind of philosophy professor doesn't put words on the slides? It's PHILOSOPHY.). Then he launched into an entirely different discussion which consisted of his habits and how he does certain things, blah blah blah. He never finished his thought about the mind-body problem... The whole class was so confused by the end of lecture. I doubt we learned anything at all. It was terrible. Avoid him if you can.

Again, nice guy. Awful teacher.

PHILOS 133 Submitted Oct. 16, 2014 Grade Received: N/A

Professor Cumming really cares about his students. I took PHILOS 133 with him last spring quarter. Very patient in explaining things. Very accessible during office hours. The course itself is not very hard. He makes it clear what would be tested during the exam. Small class. very easy to get help from fellow classmates.

Overall, highly recommend it if you are interested in logic and math.

PS, he is from Australia, the accent...

PHILOS 172 Submitted Nov. 19, 2009 Grade Received: N/A

Super nice guy who's not disassociated from the normal world like a lot of philosophy professors are. he's young but knows what he's talking about with philosophy of language. plus, he's a very fair grader.

PHILOS 133 Submitted March 22, 2010 Grade Received: N/A

Prof. Cumming is a really solid professor. This class was a really small class, and we had great discussions with him over the quarter. He did a good job of explaining his approach to symbolizing and brought up interesting side topics, that although were not part of the course, were relevant. I had him for 127A as well, and the concern he has for his students is clear. Because of a weird scheduling conflict that interfered with some class time he set up an additional class for us all to meet. He is very knowledgeable concerning the fields of linguists, philosophy of language and even some set theory, which makes him quite able to explain things with full understanding. He will only get better with time.

PHILOS 7 Submitted May 15, 2010 Grade Received: N/A

I agree with the posts below saying that he will ruin your GPA. This class was by far the most ridiculous class I have ever taken. It was pointless going to lecture because it was nearly impossible to keep your eyes open. He goes off on random tangents. By the end of lecture, you were more likely to be more confused. I absolutely DETEST philosophy after this class. In fact, the mere mention of the word philosophy makes me want to run for my life. Don't take this class with this professor if you know what's best for you.

PHILOS 7 Submitted Feb. 16, 2010 Grade Received: N/A

I think his greatest downfall is his age: he's way too young! Taking into account the fact that he has a PhD from Rutgers and that he has written some pretty impressive material, I was baffled by his explicit struggle and strain while attempting to explain basic concepts related to the Mind and Body problem. Many people, including myself, had to look at online sources prepping for the tests... my notes made no sense to me. He would jump into these convoluted examples even before he gave the generic, basic definition/description of the term on the board. By the end of the period, looking at the board, one would guess a chicken was playing tick-tack-toe. I think he's a great person with a lot of talent and knowledge. Having taken 3 Phil. classes with the same teacher thus far, I guess I'm used to a different style of teaching. He should prepare before lecture, look over things, etc. Overall, if you're not very knowledgeable about Phil. I wouldn't recommend taking this class with him.

PHILOS 7 Submitted April 2, 2010 Grade Received: N/A

Philosophy 7 with Cumming was by far one of the easiest courses I have taken at UCLA. Definitely possible to get an A. That said, if you are used to taking relatively easy north campus lower division classes, don't take Phil 7 with him. I heard Almog is much easier. Cumming is a really smart but not such a great lecturer. He just doesn't seem to know how to get the words out. He will repeat things over and over again so it makes lectures kind of boring, but know these subjects well for midterms. He posts study guides (with and without answers) which are really helpful when studying for the tests. Before explaining what a term means, he usually gives really complicated examples that just ended up confusing you more. Your safest bet is to just read the book for the material from the first half of the quarter and go to discussions because your TAs are very important in helping you understand what he is teaching.

PHILOS 161, taken Spring 2017 Submitted June 23, 2017 Grade Received: A

Professor Cummings is not a very good lecturer in class. However, i found him very helpful during office hours. I think he will be most helpful if you already have some idea of the material and want some elaboration. Hoeverer if you go to him Conpletely clueless, his explanation might be a bit confusing.
All in all, I think he's a good professor and a nice guy. He's also quite a lenient grader. However, be ready to do a lot of self study if you take his class.

PHILOS C127C, taken Fall 2016 Submitted Feb. 9, 2018 Grade Received: A-

This was the worst professor I had at UCLA. If you can find out I wrote this about you I am sorry. You are a very smart person, but you are just not a good teacher. There is a big difference between knowledge, and knowledge of teaching. Smart man, just bad at teaching. Blabbers non-stop about and goes on gambits. That's not a cool thing (I guess most philosophy professors think it is or it shows how ingenious they are). Just structure your lecture have some structure to your class. Think it out beforehand and not just arrive and start talking nonsense. Sorry for the harsh criticism but as a transfer Philosophy major and this being my first class I think I was traumatized for a long time, not really but basically until my next class which was really well structured. Don't take him unless you plan on having him take pictures of you for attendance and talk in his Australian accent about nonsense that has almost nothing to do with your papers but he somehow expects you to know what he is thinking.

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