Review Comment

[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

May 16, 2004

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

I took this class because I'd like to become an architect and the name of the class sounds really cool right? Well it's too bad, because this IS the most boring class. Almost all my friends in this class agreed. No matter how interested you are in civil engineering or architecture, you will dread going to class, and most likely end up skipping it altogether (which most of the class did). Testa could make this class so enjoyable: we could look at slides and learn about the design aspects, and possibly design and build our own stuff. Instead, we do boring physics, test the compression and tension of steel and concrete, and learn about law!! If you are interested in all of that, then by all means take this class, but if you are truly interested in designing stuff, take another preprofessional class.

Also, most preprofessionals curve to around an A- because they are meant to get someone interested in the field and are typically easy. For instance, almost all my friends in different preprofessionals (such as ChemE) got As. However, Testa curves to a B-!!! When I told my friends in the class that, they were flipping out!

Workload:

~7homeworks, which are are very difficult (20%), 2 midterms (Each 20%), final (40%)..his wording on exams is very unclear and confusing

May 07, 2004

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Don't let the title of the course fool you. You won't be doing anything more interactive in this pre-professional class than watching a block of concrete get crushed in the Mudd laboratory. What Rene Testa does is lecture, repeating himself in a monotone. Did I learn some civil engineering? Yes. Could the class have been more informative, exciting, involving? Definitely. The professor is typical; nothing special.

Workload:

He never tells us how the grading really works. There are problems that are very toughly graded (I got 3/10 on many of the homeworks). But those apparently don't really count. There are also two quizzes but there is no curve that he gives, so who knows how well you are doing? And a final exam of course, and still no word how much it counts towards the final grade.

April 18, 2004

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Testa is a really nice guy, too bad his lectures are boring. Most of the class passes out in the first 15 min (even the most attentive students). He repeats himself so many times that it is just as well if you only caught the first 15 min of lecture, or the last 15 min for that matter. If you have an immature side, you can find ways to amuse yourself. After the hearing stiff, member, shaft, and errect all in the same sentence multiple times, one can't help but let his/her minds wander and giggle just a little bit. The guest lecturers are more interesting only becasue their lectures are less general than Testa's. The guests are usually from the Civil department and talking about their specific fields. The labs are pretty cool though, if you are into bending steel/concrete beams or simulating earthquake failures. Bottom line, you have to really be into the whole structures and bridges thing to really get anything out of the class. There is not text and if you are not interested you'll sleep right through the notes.

Workload:

7-8 HW assignments (3-5 of them are labs, WAY EASY), 2 Quizzes (insulting to the intelligence), Final (No sweat!!!)

May 17, 2003

Deodatis, George Gold_nugget
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

George Deodatis is the friendliest, most helpful professor ever. He has absolutely no professorial ego, and will explain things till he's blue in the face. He is always open for questions in his office, whether it's office hours or not, and if you don't have the homework prepared for class, that's fine with him - hand it in when you have it done. When I was having trouble with a homework and presumptuously called the guy, he even called me back and left a message. He gets the "above and beyond the call of duty" award in my book.

Deodatis is a good lecturer, even if the material is a bit dry. He speaks very precisely and organizes his talks in a way that helps note-taking. His greek accent is "cute", nothing that makes your life difficult.

Workload:

10 hwks throughout the term (fairly easy for those decent at physics), including 2 based off observational labs. Midterm (easy), Final (medium). 2nd half of semester is dominated by guest lectures whose presentations are not on the final.

January 30, 2003

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Aww, come on, Prof. Testa is not so bad. The course itself is an introduction to the discipline, so naturally you end up hearing over and over things that are common sense, but eventually you will probably have a pretty good idea of what this field is like. Or not. The material just barely grazes the surface, never really letting you appreciate the complexities of the design process. Expect many guest lecturers (moslty from the department) concentrating on their individual areas of expertise.

Workload:

Weekly or biweekly homeworks. Not difficult at all. Midterm, final.

May 08, 2002

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Professor Testa is very boring. He teaches at the slowest pace possible and will review each topic of discussion at least seven times before moving on. Then he will review it again at the next lecture. The guest lecturers can be very interesting, however.

Workload:

Very light, 2 Homeworks and 2 lab "write ups", 2 quizes

May 01, 2002

Testa, Rene
[E1201] Design of Bridges, Buildings, and Spacecraft

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

This is a boring man. He makes little or no effort to motivate an interest in the material, and when he does try he fails utterly. He seems to assume we all have an interest in the topic incoming (maybe he should notice that the course is one of the ones on the list of pre-professional ones). He is extremely reliant on powerpoint slides, and about two-thirds of the class is taught by guest lecturers on assorted "specialty" topics. He has a penchant for asking some extremely broad questions, and then some very specific ones on other topics. But most of all, he is boring.

Workload:

4 fairly short homeworks, two quizzes, and a final.

Directory Data

Dept/Subj Directory Course Professor Year Semester Time Section
CEEM / CIEN CEEM CIEN E1201: Des Bldgs/Bridges & Spacecraft Rene Testa 2005 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
CEEM / CIEN CEEM CIEN E1201: Des Bldgs/Bridges & Spacecraft Rene Testa 2004 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
CEEM / CIEN CEEM CIEN E1201: Des Bldgs/Bridges & Spacecraft George Deodatis 2003 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
CEEM / CIEN CEEM CIEN E1201: Des Bldgs/Bridges & Spacecraft Rene Testa 2002 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1
CEEM / CIEN CEEM CIEN E1201: Des Bldgs/Bridges & Spacecraft Rene Testa 2001 Spring MW / 2:40- 3:55 PM 1