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The Academy of Art University

 
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Review Jennifer Oliver   Better survey, only slightly longer.

Professor Jennifer Oliver
Academy of Art University
Overall F
2 ratings,  [AVG: 27 min, 43 sec]
Workload: Responsible Grading: -

Enjoys Teaching F Arrogance: Extreme
Speaks & Writes Clearly F Respect for Students: None
Sensible Lectures F Appreciates Creativity: Hates it
Organized course D+ Student Feedback is: Ignored
Instructor Effort D
Coursework:
Concepts and Practice
Grading System:
Informed afterwards
Course Requirements:
Unclear or random
Assignment Instructions
Unclear or Misleading
 
Exam Design:
Badly written
Exam Coverage:
Followed from course
Grades Reflect:
Just did the work
Final Grade Verification:
Grade is grade - no change
Gets class involved D
Competent with material F
Friendly/Sociable F
Adds to content F
This instructor is:
Disliked
 

 

 

 
   
 
Courses:
ANM 633 
ANM633 
 
Comments
Overall: F
This class seems to be a waste of time full of simple non-challenging assignments that are boring. 
 
Should do to do well...
This instructor should not teach any subject at anytime.  She does not have the aptitude to teach. 
 
Should know...
A student should learn independently of the instructor and avoid discussing the assignments with the instructor. 
Student Competency: Expert-Level
Student's Grade: B-
Liked Instructor?: Strongly Disliked
 
Overall: F
First off, let me make one thing clear: some of my grades (see above) would have been lower if it had not been for the course 'module', which Prof.  Oliver did not write herself (since it was written by another instructor over a decade ago).  She could not change the module, she just had to teach it.  The module was fantastic and I learnt a great deal from it.

What went wrong with this class really was due to Prof.  Oliver.  She did not agree with the module, and in her assignment instructions would change whole parts of the module's assignments, making the requirements unclear and misleading.  She began these instructions with bold red captions in a larger font admonishing the class to read her instructions carefully; she clearly thought the reason that the entire class did not follow her instructions was due to the fact that we did not read them (we did).

The module which seemed interesting (as did the Professor who originally taught it) was taken by Prof.  Oliver and turned into something else; assignments seemed random and sometimes not relevant to the module.

Prof.  Oliver also did not seem to have much time for teaching.  This was an online course, so contact was already less intensive than an offline course; yet her office hours were even more restricted, as they depended on whether she “had plans for the evenings”.  She was rarely there during these office hours anyways.

When she did appear online, she only connected and conversed with a select group of students (three out nine).  She would comment on their work extensively, answer multiple questions, etc.  Sometimes she would not respond to the rest of the class until fifteen minutes before the deadline of the assignment (which happened again in the week of the finals, of all times).

The feedback received was less than helpful, too.  Often it was clear she had not even looked at the students' work carefully, giving them feedback that was essentially irrelevant to what they had designed.  Often she would latch on to small issues in your work and make you redo the entire drawing.  Essentially, if it did not look enough like her specific style (developed during the 90s with Disney), it was not good enough.  Feedback was limited to draw overs, which did not take into account the student's own style and work; all traces of the original work were lost when she made these draw overs, because her approach to critiquing was not for the betterment of the student's personal skill set or style but rather to get them to draw things like her.

It is always a bad thing when one must conclude that the key to performing well in an art course is not being creative, but rather adhering to formula.

Overall, Prof.  Oliver seems capable in her own style.  But she was single-minded, did not communicate well with other students and was often unavailable for advice.  All in all, I don't think she should continue teaching this course, because it is simply not one of her strengths. 

 
Should do to do well...
It basically comes down to how well you can adhere to her style of drawing: Disney.  Do not try to be creative (great advice for an art student, right?) in this course, for it will not be rewarded with a higher grade.  Expect many do-overs.  Worse still, she might 'draw over' (read: Disney-fy) your work later in the course. 
 
Should know...
This is a course set up for beginners.  This means that you do not (technically) need prior knowledge of the content, as the basics are covered.  You need a foundation in anatomy and basic figure drawing, though; later in the course, color becomes a more important part of the coursework.

But I suppose it is advisable to practice your Disney characters beforehand? 

Student Competency: Average
Student's Grade: B
Liked Instructor?: Disliked
 
The Academy of Art University
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