Ben Williams is a great guy; I took EE 2 with him this quarter because he was teaching it (I took 101 with him last quarter). I love how he goes slowly during lecture so you have some time to process what he is teaching. He always answers your questions, and he knows what he's talking about. He always prepares lectures and posts them online afterwards.
Winter 2023 - Really enjoyed taking Professor Williams' class. The workload felt manageable at almost all times, learned a lot from the discussion sections, and had a grade booster presentation that also gave a good push to learn about real world applications of a more conceptual class. Highly recommend taking this class. Shoutout to Anthony, as he was the best TA I've had here personally!
Prof. Williams' EE101 is challenging but rewarding. His lectures are well prepared and he (naturally) speaks perfect English. There are weekly homework assignments that reflect the material in lecture nicely. His tests and quiz are probably easier than the homework assignments. Prof. Williams is the type who doesn't hand out answers, and would prefer to walk you through a problem instead. I really have no complaints for this class whatsoever.
Spring 2022 - Professor Williams is clearly very intelligent and knowledgeable about all of the topics in this class. His slides are organized, and the content of the class is really interesting if you like photonics and solar cells. He often goes over lots of derivations and formulas so it can be sometimes a dry lecture and it can be hard to parse what is actually important. I really did learn a lot in this class that is very applicable in the photonics field. He gives three quizzes, 30 minutes each in class, and they are very reasonable. They are mostly conceptual with some calculations, and it's super important to actually understand what is happening in class and to connect all of the ideas. There are three or four homeworks, and the last one on solar cells is the most intensive one. The second one is also derivation heavy. It's all doable but definitely start early on all of them. The class ends with a final presentation and a final paper on a topic related to the class. The paper is a review so you'll be reading research papers about it and then writing about a 5-6 page paper on it. Because professor williams really knows his stuff in the photonics field you cannot bs any of this at all. If there's a gap in your knowledge he will see right through it. He's honestly probably read all of the papers we all cited and knew specific figures and authors as well. The presentation is also a bit tough, because it's 15% of your grade. He's tight with the timing and will cut you off. If your slides aren't well designed and you don't know your topic well it will show, and his questions that he asks you at the end will show that. Just be prepared for technical questions and to explain all of the concepts, and especially figures of merit, and what the state of the art is in the field. The only negatives of this class is that sometimes Professor is so knowledgeable about the topic that he can't really fathom ever not understanding it. Sometimes he can be a bit passive aggressive if you ask basic questions during class or in office hours. He's more than willing to go over things again, but there's been more than once where I've felt stupid for asking questions and have honestly just kept my mouth shut. He expects you to remember concepts learned in the early weeks and to keep building on those even though it can be easy to forget. This is a pretty common experience for many students, but it builds tough skin which we all need. The recitation for this class is honestly just a friday sometimes where his graduate students give presentations about the topics in class. Sometimes this class is so small that there is no TA, just the professor. These presentations are interesting, but the grad students aren't there to be a TA, so it can be a bit difficult in that sense because you can only really ask questions to the professor. Overall this class is not easy. Professor Williams treats it like a graduate level course, and it's challenging. You will have to dedicate time to this class for lectures, and homeworks, and taking extra time to understand it all. But at the end, it's incredibly rewarding and the content is truly very interesting. Definitely take this course if you're willing to put the work in, and it'll be a good experience.
Fall 2021 - Professor Williams is a phenomenal guy. He puts a lot of efforts in explaining the concepts and try his best to make everyone understood the lecture. He often uses interactive methods to explain the dauntingly difficult topics. The class had 5 HW assignment (somewhat difficult but late submission was allowed), 3 quizzes (Easy), and a review paper (on any topic related to QM) & short presentation. I couldn't score well in the class due to personal reasons, but he graded leniently. Overall, the class was informative and engaging even to somebody like me who had no prior experience in QM. I would highly recommend this class.