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Kistaro Windrider, Reptillian Situation Assessor

Unfortunately, I Really Am That Nerdy

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I Have A Remarkably Low Opinion Of Dr. Bayazit Right Now
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Computer Architecture class has hit a new low.

I'm in class right now, hypothetically paying attention. The fact that I'm making a LiveJournal post should show exactly how much attention I am actually paying.

Dr. Bayazit is out for some reason; he had a guest lecturer for two lectures, but this lecture, the TA is trying to teach. That's not always unreasonable; I've seen it work out before.

The TA seems to have a better command of the English language than Dr. Bayazit. He's answering the questions better. It is not encouraging for a TA to teach better than the associated professor. But that's not why the class has hit its low point; it's the material.

Dr. Bayazit has decided to teach us the basics of VHDL. This was all taught in Digital Logic, a prereq for the class. Everybody in the room should already know this material. I cannot stand classes that spend so much time teaching us something we already know...

Did I mention that the Powerpoinc slides are as gramatically busted as Dr. Bayazit's usual fare? Or that we're being stepped through a Flash tutorial on the course wepsite- with the TA reading verbatim off the screen?

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Most people around here would walk out on a teacher/TA doing that shit. Ever considered doing that?

Not an option for me; I'm too well-known. Most professors in the CS department, whether I've even had them in a class or not, can identify me; because I always sit in the same place, the TA, Abdel-Karim Al Tamimi, would know exactly who walked out, and that can't help my grade.

I may hate the class, but that doesn't mean I want to tank my GPA...

Do they factor in attendance on your grade? That's pretty cheap if they do. If not, I'd so walk out.

There's a disturbingly vague "Failure to attend class regularly may be reflected in your final grade" in the syllabus; I prefer it when a professor tells me exactly what my penalty for not attending will be. I don't like penalties that are so vague- I'd rather know what it would be so I can decide whether or not the disadvantage of this course of action is really greater than the disadvantage of wasting an hour and a half going to class. I don't know whether it's a vague "You'll miss important things" threat or an "I am going to dock you an arbitrary number of points based on my imperial whim" threat, but I've got no choice but to take it seriously.

In-class quizzes are worth 20% of the grade, too, and those are nearly weekly.

It sounds like Dr. Bayazit also has a low opinion of all of you.

1) He will not expect you to notice mistakes in his lectures.

2) He thinks you'll sit still and listen to any topic he'll present, even if you're supposed to know it already--probably because he doesn't know what the course is supposed to cover. Does he teach it often?

3) I pick my subs very carefully. I wouldn't let my class meet if I couldn't find an adequate sub. Someone who'd read a power point presentation to my class might be good for proctoring an exam (walk in, hand out papers, shut up and sit there and watch for cheaters) but not to teach anything.

It sounds like he'd rather be anywhere than teaching that class, just like you'd rather not be there taking it.

Actually, I suspect Dr. Bayazit has gotten rather reliant on us noticing his mistakes- he sure doesn't. He's got to be used to it by now- it's not like the clas is letting them slide. They're getting mercilessly corrected- although I am not the only person frustrated by now.

I'm not sure how often Dr. Bayazit teaches this class. It's offered every semester, but I think Dr. Bayazit only gets it every other semester. He's been at it for years; he should be better by now. I do wonder why he dedicated so much time to the trivial stuff of VHDL, given that its knowledge is a prereq of the course.

Just reading off a previously written Powerpoint presentation is Dr. Bayazit's lecture style, as well. The TA's ability and willingness to actually answer more than a third of the questions and explain things without screwing up means that he is actually a much better lecturer than Dr. Bayazit- or, for that matter, Dr. Crowley from the last week, who seems to spend less than 1/4 of the time actually on the subject and a significant amount of the remainder in "uhm, uh, uhm, uh..." mode. Right now, I've got more respect for Abdel-Karim Al Tamimi, the TA, than Dr. Bayazit.

Dr. Bayazit is, despite being a lousy professor, a very nice person. Computer architecture is not his field, however, it's motion planning- so I suspect he really isn't so fully inspired to do this course so well.

Dr. Crowley told us in 361 that he just couldn't stand how bored we looked in 362, but was really lost on how to make it better. He's actually pretty good in 361 where he made the slides and knows what he wants to say. It's at the least a lot more enjoyable and perhaps more informative. (He also normally teaches a graduate level Comp. Architecture class, I believe. This is his first time teaching undergrads.)

(Yeah, 362 today was terrible. I spent the class finishing my stats homework that's due next Monday. I did write three words--after 10 ms--in my notes, though, so it wasn't a complete waste of time... (not.))

Step 1 to make Computer Architecture better: Defenestrate Dr. Bayazit's notes.

It may or may not have been Dr. Crowley's style at all; there may or may not be anything he could have done to get our interest. He wasn't covering new material (or had I just read that far ahead?), and I think the entire class is already pretty burned out...

I kinda know how you feel - a lot of my lectures have been covering old ground, especially the QB supplementary lectures, which included drawing quadratics and differentiating ke^(bx).

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