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Abachi may have not been the most effective lecturer, but he is without a doubt, a brilliant man. I had Abachi the 1st quarter he taught 6A, & it was fairly difficult at first. But if you study his practice tests beforehand and understand the HW prob's, you should do fine. He makes up problems and solves them right in front of the class, showing how intelligent he really is: He never uses a calculator. Although this made lectures hard to follow, the main topics he discussed were there. Abachi is used to teaching graduate courses, so you can imagine how difficult it is for him to teach an introductory physics class. He usually answers questions posted on the class website's bulletin board, so you can always post questions there. I was also the lecture-notetaker for his class the 2nd quarter he taught 6A, so I saw that he improved in lecturing style. Overall, Abachi is reasonable to take for 6A.
Abachi has been the worst professor I've had at UCLA. In fact, he is the typical stereotype of university professors that don't care about students and are teaching because they are forced to by their research contracts. First of all, let me tell you that I got an A in the class, but that's because the average on the tests are so low that if you get in the 60s range, that is considered an A. So, I think you get the picture! Like others have said, this guy just doesn't teach. He writes stuff on the board. He spends more time rounding numbers and calculating in his head than he does actually teaching anything. He always makes mistakes and when you tell him, he says that it's your fault because you copied it wrong. His office hours are half an hour long and he does refuse to help students at times because he just doesn't want to and doesn't care. The final was very unreasonable and unfair: in fact it was nothing like the practice final. For the midterms, study the practice tests because they're helpful. But the final was very unfair (average was 48) and I got the feeling that he just wants to make the students feel stupid. He tested on the things that he did not emphasize during lecture. After lectures, he would just run out as soon as he could so no one could ask him anything. You'd ask him a question, he would answer something else. I've always been told that if you go to a professor for help, considering that you've made the effort to seek their help, they welcome you. Abachi once told me that his office hours ended five minutes ago, and he was really just sitting there in his office!
I seriously don't know what to tell you about succeeding in the class with this guy because he is mean and difficult at the same time. He never looks at you when you talk and has no social skills. He just doesn't care about his students and that's just really sad. I mean he wouldn't even answer questions about the midterms; he would say go look it up on the web site. He brings UCLA down as a prestigous school. I truely don't recommend him because you won't learn anything but to hate physics. Try to read the book on your own if you have to take him. Stay calm during the midterms (they're long), and try to do well on the other parts of the class so the tests don't hurt your grade as much. Also, I hope you have good TAs because they're your only hope. Good luck!
I took Physics 6A with Abachi during his first quarter at UCLA. My only salvation was the textbook.
My class went through so many terrible things with Abachi. I don't even know where to begin. The first midterm had an average of 60%. Abachi said that everyone who got below 40% on that midterm needed to drop the course, become more prepared, and take Physics 6A another time. (About 25% of the class scored below 40% on the first midterm.) Abachi then decided to not count the scores in the lowest 40% from the class average and he calculated a new average... 80%! It's very unfair and wrong to exclude the lowest scores when calculating the curve. Let's just say that Abachi got into big trouble and the average went back down to 60%.
More on Abachi... he tried to teach my class three chapters during tenth week! As if cramming three new chapters the week before the final wasn't enough, one of the chapters that he taught wasn't even meant to be covered in Physics 6A. It was Physics 6B material. Abachi got in trouble again and had to omit that chapter from the final exam.
I guess I told these stories just so you could get a feel for some of the bizarre things this professor does. Oh, another thing... he LOVES to do extensive derivations of formulas on the board, but he often makes a mistake. After looking at the board for a minute or two, he is unable to find his error. He'll then say to the class, "You can find the mistake tonight for homework." (Not to turn in, of course, but his notes aren't worth anything if there are mistakes everywhere!)
Anyway... avoid Professor Abachi if possible. You'll end up learning solely from the book if you take him for physics.