Courses Taken: PIC 10A AND PIC 10B The most important thing to know about Prof. Ouellette is that he does not curve. He cares about his students and is a nice guy, but it is very difficult to get a good grade. PIC 10A: The first half of pic 10A is very easy, then it gets moderately difficult. I did well above average on all the exams, 100% on the homework assignments, ended up with a B in the class. That is because he did not curve the class, and my raw score was a B. I felt that my comprehension of the material was at an A- level, but I accepted the B and enrolled in his 10B class. PIC 10B: The hardest class I've taken at UCLA. On the first day of class, the class and waitlist were full with around 65 students. After the first midterm, only 40 of us remained in the class. The exams were very difficult. Still, Ouellette cares about his students. He's always in the PIC lab helping us with homework, and he once sat down with me for two hours to go over my past exams with me. Such a nice person, but does not give generous grades. I ended up failing PIC 10B and I know I was not the only one. I will be retaking the class with another professor. His Grading Scheme: 30% homework 15% Midterm 1, 15% Midterm 2 40% final Tip: Check the testbank, he repeats questions and format year to year. Good luck!
I felt that Prof. Ouellette is super fair, but how difficult you find his class will most likely be dependent on who you had for 10A. And ironically, I don't think Ouellette for 10A will adequately prepare you for Ouellette for 10B. I took 10A with Virtanen, and by comparison, Ouellette's class was a relatively more one. Pros: - Ton of time to finish homework assignments, just don't EVER start 1 or 2 days before it's due. Even if you just look at it the day it's assigned, that's better than pretending it's going to go away until a couple days before it's due. - Exam formats are pretty much the same, from midterms to final. - On a related note, the final did NOT take all 3 hours. Major plus. - MY GOD THE AVAILABILITY OF THIS PROF. Never take it for granted- massive bonus that he will answer content related questions over email! And seriously he like lives in the PIC lab there's no excuse for not getting help. Go to him before TAs, Lab assistants, classmates. He is your key. Cons: - No curve, no dropped exams. He's really straightforward about this going in. It won't change for you. - Memory based: More than problem solving, I felt this class was for homework, ability to follow directions to a tee, for exams, remembering all the little behavioral details and syntactical requirements. C++ is a strict language and his exams reinforce that. MY TIPS: - Please start the homework when it's assigned. - Find a homework buddy! I had one, we met every week on a day that prof O had office hours and got the assignment done in <5 hours - Use his resources. Studying will require going back through every lecture, looking at examples to supplement your understanding, etc. - DO THE BOOK PROBLEMS HE RECOMMENDS. - Find old exams. I got a B and had there been an alternate grading scheme or a curve it would've been an A- or higher. Just be prepared to put in work for this class, ESPECIALLY if your 10A class didn't focus too hard on either pointers or classes.
This is how a typical class would go...Spend the first 45 minutes trying to figure out why his examples don't work, and then begin the days lecture in the remaining 5 minutes. You can spare yourself his sh**ty lectures and learn everything you need from the w3c tutorials. Not especially hard or anything, but nowhere near as cool as I was hoping it would be.
Summer 2016 - Always Always Always ALWAYS ALWays Always avoid this professor. Always avoid this professor. I can't emphasize enough how important to not take his class and save your GPA. This professor has HORRIBLE and RIDICULOUS grading policy. First of all, he does not curve the score. You may say, not curving the score is not that bad right? Trust me, not for this professor. I have taken some lectures from other professors who do not curve the score, but they try to make their tests fair and make the average around 80. For Ouellette, lol, the average for the first two midterms is around 65. The average for the final is 66, but he DOES NOT CURVE the fucking score, which means almost half of the class will fail. The worst thing is not only his grading policy, but his TA (Eric Prizomic, do remember him) . This TA does not know anything about Math. I went to his office hour once and asked about homework problems, he can't explain shit. During discussion, he even asked students for help because he didn't know how to solve the problem. And his discussion is a complete waste of time. This TA is also EXTREMELY strict on grading homework and exam problems. The only thing he knows is to follow the solutions he did himself, and if anything on your homework is different from his solution he will take points off. 131A is one of the most difficult classes among upper math classes. It is a class about proving, which means on your exam and your homework, it is hard for us to give a perfect proof during exam. They can take off points anywhere they like. Making his students get low score seems please this professor and his horrible TA. Taking this professor's class is one of the worst decisions I have ever made during my life. Try to avoid this professor.