All Ratings and Reviews for James Gimzewski


Overall 2.7
Easiness of class 1.8
Workload 1.4
Not Clear
Clarity of professor 1.6
Not Helpful
Helpfulness of professor 2.3
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CHEM 20A Submitted June 18, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

Gimzewski can't teach period. He uses ppw slides, and expects you to absorb everything he says. I fell asleep almost every lecture and then just stopped going. If you take this class, be prepared to teach yourself the book. Also, i recommend attending extra discussion sections because the TA's are actually able to teach the material, especially when it gets more complicated toward the second half of the course. TA OH are also helpful, his suck. His midterms are 20 question multiple choice which sucks because some lucky guessing can really mess up the distribution making it hard for the people who actually study to really show what they know. The final is 60 mulitple choice and not too bad. I got average on the first midterm, then top 10% on second midterm, and got an A- in the class. I'm happy with it. I took AP Chem btw, and it really only helps for the first midterm, and not really after that.

CHEM 20A Submitted Feb. 18, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

He's basically the epitome of the nutty professor. He doesn't do a good job at explaining concepts and its obvious teaching really isn't his first priority. This man is a giant in his field and if you ask him about STMs during office hours I'm sure he'll come to like you. On the other hand, all the midterms and finals were multiple choice so it wasn't very hard to get a good grade.

CHEM 20A Submitted Feb. 15, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

Better than Baugh or Neuhauser. Midterms and finals are multiple choice, while the quizzes are free response. He's okay.

CHEM 20A Submitted Dec. 20, 2011 Grade Received: N/A

I didn't attend many lectures because his powerpoints were pretty much directly from the book. You're probably better off reading the book if you plan on learning something. I suppose he's a decent professor but I didn't go to many lectures to know anyway. The midterms were fair and his final was ridiculously hard. I walked out wanting to cry. But I ended up with an A- in the class so I suppose the curve was pretty high. If you had to choose between Gimzewski and Baugh, take Gimzewski!

CHEM 20A Submitted Dec. 17, 2011 Grade Received: N/A

Okay, first of all, let me just tell you that he is a great professor. Go ahead and read all the other reviews, but in my opinion, he is nice and cares about his students. There were people who took Baugh after comparing the reviews on Bruinwalk, but I saw so many people crying after taking Baugh. Their test were all free response, while our midterms were two multiple choice tests around 20 questions each. The final was around 60 problems multiple choice, but for a 3 hour period, that was more than enough time.

The problem with Gimzewski is that he only teaches first year chemistry once every two years or so (or at least that was what he said), so think of it as a privilege to be taught by this professor if you ever get the chance to enroll in his class.

If you think you aren't learning much in lecture, which I sometimes experienced, by all means go to his office hours and he will be more than happy to answer questions or go into further detail about the subject. While some professors may cancel their lectures if they are not on campus, Gimzewski is different. While he was working in a lab in Japan, he created a video lecture so that his students would not fall behind in lecture materials. I do not know a professor that was this dedicated to teaching his students, and although people may think differently of him, I truly applaud this professor for his knowledge of the subject and kindness towards his students.

CHEM 20A Submitted Nov. 25, 2011 Grade Received: N/A

First off, I didn't learn anything in this class at all and I'm really disappointed because I'm a Chem Engineering and I love chemistry. He copies and pastes everything from the book into the powerpoint...and then read it off the slides. So you seriously are better off reading the book. But if you are looking for an easy class, you have it.
There are two midterms which are based on knowledge from AP Chemistry and physics so if you have a really strong background on those. You will do fine. However, BEWARE: there are only twenty questions on his midterms (which means 1 point = 5 percent of your grade) so stupid mistakes can doom you.
There are three quizzes which count for 10 percent of your grade and those are actually harder than the midterms.
His Lecture is really boring and everyone around me always fall asleep. I personally think he's one of those genius mad scientist who can't explain simple stuff because he's always thinking about higher level chemistry.
He's funny and my friends who went to his office hours say he is really nice but he can't teach so I have to give him a bad grade for teaching.
All in all, my advice to you?
- Review your highschool chemistry notes or if you don't have those, form group study with friends who know their chemistry well and review basic principle with them
- Bring your book to the lecture AND your ipod to prevent you from falling asleep. You can save a lot of time reading the book using that 50 min lectures.

CHEM 20A Submitted March 29, 2011 Grade Received: N/A

Okay, I actually took Honors174, a nanotechnology seminar with professor Gimzewski. I can see why he is not a very good teacher because he mumbles and he is not very organized. I don't think he even read all of our assigned blogs.
But he is really passionate about nanotechnology. He worked in the IBM nano-department for goodness' sake. And best of all, you don't get tested on the things he talks about. The whole course is just sitting there for 3 hours (once a week) and writing a 1000 word blog almost every week.
There're also two presentations that were really chill and a final paper, which sounds like a lot (12-15 pages) but it's nothing serious.
This class is a 5-unit, upper-division honors seminar. And the best part is that you get a guaranteed A. Well, I got an A-, but that's because I didn't really put as much effort into my final paper. Take this class!!!!

CHEM 20A Submitted May 4, 2008 Grade Received: N/A

Horrible. Horrible. Horrible. Be prepared to teach yourself. Goodluck! The tests weren't too bad but they did contained several errors. Just memorize the millions of formulas and concepts and you should be ok. Final grade:B-

Course not listed Submitted March 10, 2008 Grade Received: N/A

This proffessor is not as bad as other students say he is- and trust me, I'm not some smarta$$ getting A's on his tests.

You DO have to be knowledgable of the material BEFORE class. You should use the class lectures not to learn the concepts but to see which formulas or concepts he emphasizes, so that you may be prepared for the class.

This is pretty much a self-teaching course. His tests are not too easy, but if you read the book over and over again and work out problems, you will get at least an average grade. The problems on the tests are based off the problems in the textbook, so you know what to expect.

I just think chem in general is not a fun, easy course (for me anyway) =T

Course not listed Submitted March 5, 2008 Grade Received: N/A

He is the worst professor I have had so far. He wastes class time by coming in late. His equipment breaks constantly. He fails to prove or provide any rationale behind anything he teaches - it is all just memorization. The book for 20A is also the worst book I have had for any class so far, but I learn far more from the book than from Gimzewski. The tests are mostly multiple choice with no points taken off for wrong answers, with an average score of about 50%. as such, the standard deviation is small enough that accurate guessing makes the difference between 1 to 2 full letter grades. also, he is stoned every time he comes to class. he constantly mumbles and nothing he says ever makes sense. i don't understand anything that he is teaching. but nobody understands anything that he is teaching. since the class is graded on a curve, i think i have a relatively good grade. but i definitely don't feel prepared for 20B.

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