Mahtash Esfandiari

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Easiness 4.0/ 5
Clarity 3.0/ 5
Workload 4.0/ 5
Helpfulness 4.0/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Summer 2021 - Not the best professor. She uploads pre-lecture videos and tells us we're "required" to watch them before lecture. Also she'll upload these videos at midnight.. or even a few hours before lecture, leaving us with little time to actually watch these before lecture time. However I didn't find any of these videos useful and her handwriting can be hard to read since she uses a pretty large pen size for her notes. Her actual lecture didn't seem that helpful to me. Her lecture is mostly her reading her notes and showing us coding in R, but it felt disorganized and all over the place. She also put us in breakout rooms to work on problem sets which she discusses the answers to after. I learned purely from the notes that she uploads to her CCLE site. The notes are okay, but they can look better. The notes have randomly chosen font sizes and there are some typos but if you understand the content, you can spot these. She uploads a bunch of files to CCLE but I recommend you use the notes and the "CFUs" to learn. The CFUs (Check for Understanding) are problem sets that deal with the topics we learn in lecture. She uploads the answers to them as well and these are great preparation for her midterms. We had 3 homework assignments but unfortunately we have to work on these assignments in a group. I wouldn't say these homework assignments are hard and long but it can be difficult working in a group when we're all in different time zones and when some people don't pull their weight. For the midterm and final, we were given a little bit more than 2 days to work on them. They're open notes, open book, open internet which was nice. They're about 4-5 questions with some questions having multiple parts, but the exams aren't too long and can be completed in 4-6 hours if you know what you're doing. They were pretty straightforward and mostly similar to the CFUs and homework. She also posts some previous midterm exams which definitely helped me study. The grading scheme is: Homework (20%), Midterm (40%), Final (40%) Homework assignments are graded very leniently and I think exam grading is fair. This class isn't difficult. Esfandiari isn't the best professor but she's nice and caring. She's disorganized at times but she cares about our learning. Despite all of this, I'm still happy with how much I learned from this class.
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