This class was tough.
She openly admits that this is a weed-out class. While this deters many students, don't let it deter you. She is one of the best professors I had at Columbia! She teaches in a very clear way, and if you put the work in, her office hours are well worth your time. There are the horror stories of her telling students that they are just not smart enough to go to medical school. But these are students that don't take advantage of all the resources she provides. I found her to be helpful, funny, and encouraging, so long as I did the work and thought. While a stressful class, it was also thoroughly enjoyable, and set me up to succeed in all my Columbia classes that followed - not just the sciences.
Her exams are tough but really teach you how to think. Highlights for me included the sections on immunology and virology, which also lead me to take both Immunology with her husband (who we dubbed XY Mowsh), and Virology with Dr. Racaniello. I was also a huge fan of the week on neuro. While we didn't get the guest lecturer, I am almost glad, as I loved Mowsh's teaching style so much. Think of this: while you are taking notes, you are learning about the hugely complex system that allows your brain to connect to your hands that allow you to write and learn, while also continuing to control your heartbeat, your breathing, your bladder, all your hormones, etc. Have to pee while doing so? There's so much that goes into that! Did you have coffee?? ADH suppressed. Did you drink lots of water?? Your glomerulus is filtering your blood at a higher rate and your nephrons are opening up water channels. I found myself thinking about everything going on inside my body as I took the notes explaining what was going on inside my body. Talk about meta!
Hours per week:
Advice for students:
Give this class the work it requires and you'll get so much out of it. Her exams are not about regurgitation, but about understanding, which will help you in all your courses to come. Also make sure to take advantage of her problem book (it was my bible during that year), and the recitations. Your TAs are awesome and work just as hard as you do for this class, so give them respect and use them!