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Professor Simmons was, in my opinion, not very good. His lectures were very conceptual and he tended to jump around a bit and was really unorganized. He had virtually no examples in class, and whichever ones he had were derivations found in the textbook.
The grading scheme was 10% homework, 10% quizzes (there were 2) 20% each for 2 midterms, and a 40% final. An alternate grading scheme was available where he took the higher midterm score and made it 35% and the final 55%. He also drops the lowest homework assignment and quiz.
What irritated me in this class was that homework was graded very harshly. He assigned about 20 problems from the textbook, some of which were pretty difficult. However, he picks 2-3 problems to grade, and if you get those problems wrong, he takes off full credit. The homework was only worth 6 points each, so if you got those problems wrong, but every other problem right, you'd still get a 0/6 on that assignment.
The quizzes weren't too hard, but the midterms were pretty difficult. It wasn't enough just doing all the homework, you actually have to understand the material. His questions were pretty much all conceptual, with one or two derivations in there, and there were always a couple of tricks involved. The final was the hardest one, with about 8 questions, and again was very conceptual.
The only reason I passed the class was because my TA was exceptionally good. He also disagreed with the professor's teaching style and he was much better at explaining concepts than Simmons was.
Overall, if you have to take this course with Simmons, go to all his office hours and study very hard for his midterms and final. And try to get your homework checked by a TA before turning it in. Actually, it might be better just to take this class with another professor.