HORRID. If you can get out, get out! He is the worst professor I've ever had. You literally just have to memorize proofs. The entire class has no idea what he's talking about half the time, and he is a very poor communicator. Only take if you enjoy hearing "uh" or "um" every ten seconds. Seriously. First day of class I counted. I hit 100 "uh" or "um"s in 12 minutes. Biggest problem is that he assumes the students can see what he sees. He'll do complex math in his head and not show that step. very few people seemed to be able to follow his work very well. My TA was very frustrated with the questions he gave for midterms. Just run. Run.
I have had the utter misfortune of having Professor Geoffrey Mess for 32A and B. First of all, I would like to talk about his appearance. You'd think a guy with the last name Mess would make extra sure he did not look like a mess every single day of his life. His hygiene is extremely poor. He has a graying lions mane of hair and beard. He often wears dirty, obviously previously worn shirts to class. He has been known to scratch his buttocks and pubic area right in front of the class. He smells. You know, a lot of people might say, why critique his appearance? Because it matters. Two quarters of having to see and smell a man who came to class looking like a homeless man really gets to you. To compliment his poor attempt at having an appearance, Professor Mess also happens to struggle in the social aspect of life. He has trouble speaking and conveying ideas to the class. He does not understand basic small talk and I'm not thoroughly convinced he has ever had a friend or a significant other to practice any sort of simple human conversation. Mess has been vocal about his hatred for computers, the internet, or any gagdets. He feels so strongly about this, that he likes to simply ignore that the internet is the way students find out about their grades and keep them waiting four weeks after fall quarter has ended to finally reveal whether they have passed his rigorous class or not. He does not respond to his email, not even if its the TA. Therefore the TAs are totally out of the loop and must ask the students if there is homework, what they have learned in class, etc. Also Mess does not often remember to give students the homework on the day that he is supposed to. Mess is a genius (although somehow he mucks up simple algebra sometimes). He obviously thinks about mathematics every minute and fails to realize that 99.99 percent of humans do not do this. Thus he teaches in a way that is extremely difficult for the average college student to grasp. His lectures usually go over everyones head, and he seems stumped when he asks the class a question and there are seconds of silence. Then he has the audacity to ask "Everybody get that?" after he has explained something extremely complicated in an extremely poor way. The fact is that almost everybody did not "get that." The poor midterm grades should be a hint of that. His midterms sometimes contain trivial proofs and memorization rather than honing math skills. As expected the curve is pretty low and he guarantees 23 percent A- or better and 58 percent B- or better. Which is nice since most of the class fails the tests anyway. Mess is just an awful, disgusting human being. No, I'm not bitter, I'm passing his classes just fine. I just feel bad for anyone who must experience this horrible man. He is simply an awful professor in every way and does not respect his students at all. I have checked and it looks like UCLA has had enough complaints to remove him from teaching, at least for spring quarter.
I took the history of mathematics with Professor Mess. The class was not too difficult, but that was no thanks to him. He walks into class most likely wearing the shirt he wore the day before, writes stuff on the board and assumes that we understand it. Thankfully the material is not too difficult, and everything on the test comes directly from the book. The first midterm was pretty easy, although I have no idea how I did on it because he never returned the grades to us. What's curious is that the day after our second midterm, the grades were already online. So based on that test, I'm doing alright in the class, but I honestly have no idea. We were only assigned 4 homeworks, none of which we have gotten back. (Gene Kim is an amazing TA, he goes over most of the homework in section. TAKE HIM). In short, don't take Professor Mess. He strictly follows his last name. To. The. Smallest. Detail. His office looks like a small bomb went off, scattering papers everywhere. He often stands in front of the class thinking for minutes, just staring at us until he can formulate his thoughts. The one good thing is that 30% of the class is getting an A- or better, and 70% is getting a B- or better. At least there's an awesome curve.
Mess can be a little awkward, but overall cares a lot about his students. I took him for 123 and 106. His teaching and lectures are hard to follow but he stresses proofs above all else, especially the ones he does in class. He is an extremely easy grader. If you get the proof right, or almost right, or if you're on the right track you'll get full credit, or mostly full credit on the midterm and final.
Really disappointed, he makes me spend most of the time to study MYSELF!!!!!!!!!!! Workload is extremely heavy and takes me lots of time for finishing it. Paper is marked by his feeling and the grade can be quite out of expectation(usually much worse than expected). It is the course I have taken and got the poorest result, even though I spent most of the time for studying it!