© 1998-9 Rainer Glaser. All rights reserved.

The University of Missouri at Columbia
Chemistry 412 - Computational Chemistry - Fall Semester 1999

Teaching Evaluations
Overall Rating 3.84

Criteria of evaluation FS99 WS98
Organization and preparation of lectures and discussions 3.80 3.82
Instructor's enthusiasm for the subject matter 4.00 4.00
Helpfulness in answering questions and clarifying points 3.80 3.82
Ability to lecture in a manner which is easily followed 3.60 3.27
Ability to stimulate interest in the subject 4.00 3.73
Overall rating of the instructor 3.80 3.82
Your rating of how much you have learned 3.80 3.82
Overall rating of the course 3.95 3.64
Overall rating 3.84 3.73

1. List the strong and weak features of the lecturer and include suggestions for improvement.

Student A: He is very and I mean very enthusiastic about the material he teaches and very motivating in terms of getting you interested. I cannot say enough about how helpful he was in answering questions in and out of class. He has even gone so far as to give us "real world" projects and what I mean by this, are projects dealing with our own research!! It is rare that faculty give so much support in the area of your own research without expecting some form of validation (like his name on a paper!). I really have nothing to say in terms of improvement ... he has been helpful, the discussions we have had with him in/out of class have been intelligent and very useful. I would like to see perhaps a second semester of this class, or a lab that would accompany it, because it seems that now our curiosity has been peaked yet we do not have a forum for which to progress in this area.

Student B: Rainer is a very enthusiastic, friendly and an excellent teacher. He knows very well the [tarts?] to teach. The best thing in him is this that he comes to level of students when he teaches. He gets very excited about Chemistry and that excites us (the students) in turn. There is only one thing that I will suggest to you and that is to be a bit strict in terms of "meeting the deadlines" for various submissions. This is a graduate level course and we all are graduate students an I think that it is high time that we learn to be responsible towards us and towards our peers. All of us should very well understand what a "deadline" means at this stage. It is not fair to those, who adhere to the deadlines if those who are tardy, are not penalized.

Student C: WOW - He is very interested that we totally understand the concepts, & will explain a concept several different ways until we "get it". Very organized and always well prepared. Also, he always keep us focused and on track. I can't thing of any weak features. He is also very knowledgeable and current about the literature. He is very generous with his time and even allowed us to meet extra every week for review and comments sessions.

Student D: Well Prepared.

Student E: I would recommend giving more reviews and making a better uniform picture of all the learned materials for the students to preserve in mind. I would have liked more exercises for homework at different levels of difficulty to help me sort out and understand the most important angles of the theory.
2. Compare the lecturer to others you have had (especially with those in science courses at this level).

Student A: Rainer is by far the best lecturer I have had at Mizzou (and even as a undergrad). He took the time to make sure that we learned not just regurgitate the material back to him. For him, excellence is not an option, it is what should and must be achieved, and I have found that this is not an overwhelming quality most of the chemistry faculty are interested in, especially when it comes to their students. I really wish more faculty taught like Rainer, but perhaps this is not just a symptom of teaching but of a person's entire outlook on their career and life. It seems as though many of the classes taught here on a graduate level are done by force, and not out of actual interest. This of course translates into very uninteresting lectures and ultimately little comes out of it. Rainer was not only enthusiastic, but also interested in what he was teaching and what we should learn. I hope to see more of this in future graduate classes in Chemistry.

Student B: Rainer cares about his students. This is the first thing as opposed to some other professors in this department. He made efforts to make sure that students understood the material really well. I like long encouraging discussions that we had during review sessions. This is something that is not possible in all courses. I think that a part of it depends on the lecturer as well.

Student C: Top 99.9999% -- one of the very best . It is unusual in science to have a professor as interested in education as the subject material. Especially in graduate school, most professors just throw material at you and say "You're in grad school, figure it out yourself." Dr. Glaser is very active in our education and I feel I learned more because of it.

Student D: The best.

Student E: Very good. In this course the lecturer used lecture and practice time very well.
3. List the strong and weak features of the overall course (not the lecturer) and include suggestions on how its quality might be improved.

Student A: Strong features definitely include having the software (Gaussian) and supercomputer.

Student B: This class is the #1 class I have had at MU. The review sessions were very helpful. I feel that we all learnt a lot during those. Computational Chemistry is a very vast field. I learnt a lot in these 3-4 months. But a lot more is left to be learnt. I feel that it will be best to split this course into two semesters. Every day of the class we learnt new things. The more we learnt, the more curious we got about computational chemistry. The project work was good to do. Although I learnt a lot about writing proposals, organizing the material, framing the questions, doing presentation, etc. but the most I got out , was from peer evaluations. In the long run, it will help us during our scientific careers. It taught us how to be bold and thick skinned about your judgment. From these peer evaluations, we realized that people will not always agree to what you have to say and then you will just have to accept it as it comes. I think it will be a good idea, if during there peer evaluations, you participate a little bit, since we are affecting each other's grade.

Student C: I would suggest to have a brief overview of all the theories at the beginning of the semester, so we could keep the "big picture" in mind as we go through the details. Overall, an excellent class. I'm going to miss it! I would also suggest expanding this into a 2-semester course: 1) Ab initio and 2) Semi-Empirical and Correlation Theories to get into more details. Also more computer exercises -- I learn better if I can use the methods along the way.

Student D: [No Comments.]

Student E: The course was systematic and not too difficult. As already said better review of the material would have been desirable (as actually in most other courses)
4. Compare the course with the others you have taken.

Student A: Best by far. Interactions with other members have been a major help.

Student B: I enjoyed taking this course. Rainer made this course very interesting and easy to follow. Everyday there was something new to learn.

Student C: This class was an absolute joy to take -- I learned more in this class than in most others. The learning was fun, and because Dr. Glaser puts so much effort into preparing for the class, it motivated me to put more effort into it as well.

Student D: [No Comment.]

Student E: Very Good.

5. Your overall rating of the course (circle letter grade please).

Student A: A.
Student B: A.
Student C: A+.
Student D: A.
Student E: A-B.