If you are like me (and for your sake, I pray you’re not), you can recall eagerly counting down the days until the Stanford Course Bulletin came out, pouring over course reviews and old course syllabi, even concocting multiple four year plans and/or spreadsheets of your proposed schedule for the quarter, complete with an elaborate color-coding system to distinguish which classes fulfill which requirement (shhh…it’s okay. I can stop anytime I want…)
But even if you aren’t hyper-obsessed with course planning, you’ve probably stumbled at least once onto the website Courserank. In this cyperspace Mecca, students can develop their course schedules, track grades, and – true to its name – rank courses. So in order to give some legitimacy to the copious amount of hours I spend perusing Courserank, I’ve decided to provide you all with some of my favorite reviews from over the years. Some of you may be offended, some entertained, some bored, some wondering if I’ve discussed this addiction with my therapist (I have, to answer your question), but if nothing else, maybe you’ll discover a gem of class that will change your life and open your eyes.
…But I wouldn’t bank on it.
“I mean, how hard is it to pipet something into a test tube?”
“Simply put, Tom Kealey is a straight up gangster”
This one sucks less than others.”
“The Good: robert sapolsky, the fact that they taped the videos, robert sapolsky’s notes, robert sapolsky’s beard”
“Reasons to take this class:
1. You enjoy being unfairly and arbitrarily graded.
2. You’re okay with a 3.0 GPA.
3. You like memorizing who Saladin was and how many miles northwest Babylon is from Uruk.
4. you love spending hours reading material you will never discuss, never be tested on, and forget the next day.
5. You relish having many questions, none of which are ever answered by the TFs.
6. You like that when you get an essay prompt that your TF explicitly says should be half summary, only to heed her advice while writing and get the comment “use less summary next time.”
7. You are searching for a reason to hate your life.
8. You are unable to: get into another IHUM, petition into another IHUM, take a quarter long leave of absence, or transfer out of Stanford.”
“Don’t let Chidsey’s mysterious fanny pack and sweet demeanor deceive you. His lectures are far from helpful. All you end up doing in class is hypothesizing about what is in that fanny pack.”
“I went to section once but from then on just came to hand in my assignment and run out, shielding my face from the disapproving TA. I was mildly surprised to recieve an A.”
“If you can’t do the problem sets after the second week, drop it… pride isn’t everything.”
“I feel conflicted about saying that I loathed this class.
The course policies ranged from the idiotic to the insulting. The epitome of this treatment, however, was the requirement that we affix an initialed copy of the Honor Code to every assignment submitted, lest it not be graded. I’m guessing that this was an attempt to convince conflicted students not to cheat, but in reality, it did nothing but provide a palpable reminder – with every one of the myriad assignments – that the faceless They behind this class thought me a piece of contemptible slime, utterly without honor or respect for common morality, who must be reminded at every turn of the dire punishments awaiting cheaters, lest I descend at once to my natural level of vile intellectual dishonesty.
Not that I’m bitter.”
“what a silly little class…”
“If this class was a movie, I would throw popcorn at the screen.”
“No matter how many girls you hear blathering about how attractive Denis Trotabas is, get out of his lecture. He is incomprehensible, and he does not understand English well enough to answer questions.”
“Get Professor Trotobas. One of the HOTTEST professors”
Disclaimer I: if it seems like there is an unnatural bias towards “techie” over “fuzzy” classes listed here, it’s because there is. Perhaps you fuzzies funnel your bitterness and class-loathing into poetry and personal memoirs. We techies apparently bitch about it in a public internet forum. Except for the case of IHUM. Because let’s face it: everybody hates IHUM. You know you do too.
Disclaimer II: And Denis Trotabas is sexy sexy. Although my Math 51 grade might argue that this is not important.