Evaluation Comments
Course:Data Structures in Java I

Quarter:Winter 12/13
Time: TuTh 15:10 - 16:40
Location: Loop Campus
James Riely PhD

Associate Professor
Instructor homepage

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What are the major strengths and weaknesses of the instructor?

1.   The professor is very passionate about the subject, but at times may go to fast over some of the material.
2.   The major strength of this professor is that he is able to teach some material really well. The largest flaw is that I felt he didn't teach the material that would be helpful in regards to doing homework assignments or preparing for exams.
3.   Has a lot of knowledge in the subject but very poorly taught and hard to understand lessons. Homework was also very difficult and did not cover what was learned in class.
4.   He is very knowledgeable and keeps class interesting, but has some trouble explaining things in laymans terms to students who are struggling.
5.   The professor presented material carefully and in a manner that was easily followed.
6.   Ability to explain code very good.Weakness: Jokes.
7.   This instructor knows how to keep the class interesting. He pretty much always has a silly mood in the classroom, which keeps the class from becoming dull. I didn't think that this professor had any weaknesses.
8.   Strengths: were learning about new aspect of java programming.Weaknesses: Listening to lectures about programming, instead of having labs and assignments in class, is a major disadvantage to not understand the lectures
9.   He knows a lot about the subject which is his strength. He seems to be very passionate. But he does not seem to care at all for his students. Whenever I go to him for help he seemed disinterested and acted as if he did not have time for me, even kicking me out of his room when I did not understand the problem, but could not form a proper question to help clear the air. He makes himself seem so open to students, but in reality is impatient and seems to not care at all about helping.
10.   Strength: Clear explanationsWeakness: hard to pay attention some times
11.   I like that he keeps an upbeat paces for something that some people might consider boring.

What aspects of this course were most beneficial to you?

1.   The on the board code examples really helped my understanding of the subject.
2.   The most beneficial aspect of this class was learning to work with others in order to finish and understand assignments.
3.   None.
4.   Nearly all of it, I learned very much in the topic
5.   Online assignment submission format.
6.   Office hours
7.   The homework. It really helped me understand how each of the data structures work.
8.   Algorithms
9.   The tutoring center and other students. I have learned and received more help from those sources than the instructor.
10.   The talk about coding standards.
11.   I think the textbook does a great job and the fact that the course runs parallel with the textbook is a plus.

What do you suggest to improve this course?

1.   I think that some more introductory into Java would be beneficial, since most students come from Python, they may not be familiar with Java.
2.   I think the material would be easier to understand if the professor wrote more example code in class so we could see his mindset while conquering problems.
3.   Must be taught better.
4.   The secondary book seemed unnecessary.
5.   None
7.   Sometimes students don't catch on to the class material that quickly. Perhaps find a way for students to know what to write down during the class.
8.   Labs and Programming in class
9.   A professor that is more open to helping students and furthering their knowledge, and to try and create a more interactive class, instead of a boring stand and talk based lecture.
10.   There seems to be a large distribution of people with coding experience. Perhaps there should be an accelerated version of this course.
11.   I wish we spent a little bit more time in the beginning of the course on java in general considering most of the students in the class had to pick it up. I feel like we went over it just a little too fast. But then again this is a java 'DATA STRUCTURES' class so i do understand.

Comment on the grading procedures and exams

2.   Grading was slow at first, but that was not the professor's fault. I always felt as though I received a fair grade for the work I put into assignments and exams.
3.   None.
4.   Very fair and I felt I received the grades I deserved. Also made very clear how he was grading and where your grade currently was.
5.   None
7.   Graded fairly and on-time.
8.   Grades were fair
9.   Exams were graded promptly, but assignments were not.
10.   It was fair.
11.   I believe he has done a good job grading in a fair way.

Other comments?

2.   I think James Riely is an extremely talented programmer and individual, I just don't have faith in his abilities to teach that material to others who are not at that level yet.
3.   None.
4.   Many students seemed to struggle... maybe there should be an intermediary class between this and intro
5.   None
9.   I like the class and subject, but not the professor.
10.   This course was a review of the AP CS course I took in high school.