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Background Knowledge Expected
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This class was tough.
Theodore Tachim is excellent in writing notes on the board in an organized way that allows students to keep up with him. However, he teaches too quickly at times and when he pushed for time, he never completes his examples and tells the students to figure it out. Another issue is when he provides homework suggestions. He'll select almost all the odd problems of each section of the chapters he'll be teaching, but some of those problems have literally nothing to do with what he has taught us and some are confusing because it will relate and not relate to what he has taught us in class. I would spend an hour looking over he problems to see which ones were really what he taught us before actually doing it and it got to a point where it was too time consuming, so I asked him after a while why he would do this. His reply was that he did not want to restrict us and that he wanted us to challenge ourselves. Okay...so I asked him if he could separate the problems that we should know for the exams from the problems that won't be part of it at all and he simply said to me to just figure it out. It was absolutely insulting because I know a lot of other people were just as confused as I was with figuring out what problems to really do. Not everyone has the time to go through the list and maybe challenge themselves and I was one of them. I had to make time for this and it started eating at my study time for my classes during the semester. Managing it became quite tedious and I never could do all the problems because I would usually run out of time. The main reason I was able to keep up was because I had a good foundation in Calculus 1, but if you've struggled with it a lot, I do not recommend this professor. Even in his office hours, when I asked him for help once on one of the challenging questions before I learned they would not be on the exam, he told me that that was not what we were focusing on in class and I knew, but it was surprising to see him confused because he was the one assigning the suggested problems. When he would decided to tell the class what problems to practice, it was literally a week before the exam, and again I repeat, not everyone has the time to do so much with other classes going on and even making time for those problems became not possible at times. Yet, we all needed to do them to pass the class. In his exams he would put in very few questions and it was extremely nerve racking how he would say as long as you know everything you will be fine. 11 questions were of an exam of 2 chapters with maybe 8 subsections each. Studying for it was nerve racking I say.
I learned a lot of things in this class, but being able to have enough time to practice the topics was very difficult, so I mainly learned more about managing my time better.
Hours per week:
Advice for students:
If you have no choice, but to take him, please make sure you try to do the suggested problems relating to what he taught the very day he teaches it because if you get behind, catching up is really hard with how fast he does the lessons. Even if it seems that he'll unlikely make things much clearer, go to his office hours when you can to ask any questions because regardless of his methods, he does want to help students to pass. Furthermore, if you take him, make sure you don't have other time consuming classes in terms of studying for them because if you do, his class will eat away at the time you want to use for those other classes if you don't manage his all that well.