Harvard CS 181 Spring 2021
Update: I received a Certificate of Distinction
from Harvard’s Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning in recognition
of my “excellence in teaching”.
End of Semester Feedback
Click for Raw Data. Summary:
- Evaluate your Section Leader overall (1 to 5, 5 high):
- 21 students (91%): 5
- 1 student (4%): 4
- 1 student (4%): 2
- Very well–spoken and clear. He was clearly very interested in the theoretical underpinnings and the math behind what we were
learning which was really cool to hear.
- Rylan’s a fantastic teacher! He really cares about making sure students understand the material and engage with it.
- I really like Schaeffer because he is very accessible, open to discussions, and thoroughly willing to help out those confused about
different components of lectures and assignments.
- I mainly attended Rylan’s OH and review sessions. Rylan really made sure to involve everybody in the breakout room in his teaching
and always would stop and check and address clarifying questions. He was incredibly patient and generous with his time.
- Rylan did a great job at breaking down concepts.
- was very helpful in office hours and section. Has the patience of a saint
- Rylan is awesome, extremely knowledgable about all things machine learning. If you ever have a question, he knows the answer
and can walk you through an in–depth example and explain each step in an easily digestable way
- Amazing TF and always super knowledgeable and helpful.
- Rylan is a very good teacher. He’s the kind of person I wish I had as a personal tutor, but I think his style is less effective in group
settings. Brevity is not his strong suit, and he tends to get frustrated when students don’t participate, which sometimes made
- Rylan is great at making difficult concepts accessible. His OHs were amazing for debugging code.
- Rylan, thank you so much for your thorough explanations and clear knowledge of the course material. You were an amazing TF!
- Good guy, loves the material, but answers a simple question with a 1–hour speech. Speed up dude
- Amazing section leader!!! He is very knowledgable and explains things so in depth, so thoroughly, and so well – highly recommend.
Super nice guy too :)
- Fantastic, super helpful in a very tough course
- Rylan is a true teacher – he genuinely cares about students’ understanding. His method of explaining course material is extensive.
I never had a question unanswered.
- Rylan is an amazing TF! You can tell he is super passionate about the material and always willing to help explain things. When I
look at the pset and get confused on what the problem is even asking me to do, going to Rylan’s OH helps me find a place to start!
Mid-semester Feedback (Mandatory)
- Rylan’s fantastic!
- [TA 1], Rylan, and [TA2 ] are wonderful and provide great advice for the problems!
Rylan is especially clear in his explanations. I wish [TA 3] and [TA 4] were a bit
more clear with their explanations.
- Rylan is an excellent TF. I really appreciate how he takes the time to slow down
and break things down.
- [TA 5] is great. Rylan needs to move 3x as fast (he doesn’t get through almost all
of the material). He also answered questions really long-windedly.
- Rylan needs to speed up! He has so many digressions.
- I feel included and encouraged to participate in the vast majority of office hours
(95%), but I have a vivid memory of one office hours before the midterm (I believe
it was Rylan’s) where some students were more assertive and constantly kept asking
questions, and I didn’t feel like there was space for me to ask a question I had
about one of the midterm practice problems. I acknowledge that I should have raised
my digital hand or did something to get Rylan’s attention, and for prior questions
Rylan did go around and name everyone who wasn’t speaking to see if they had questions,
but I still struggled to make space for myself. I’m not sure if Rylan could have
done very much in that situation given the students were very quick to ask more
questions, but that was a less-than-ideal office hours experience of mine that I
thought I’d share.
- Nothing. Absolutely want to emphasize Rylan is doing a terrific job for us.
- I really appreciate Rylan’s teaching. Nothing else to say, just passionate,
engaging, and clear. Perfect.
- I attended Rylan’s office hours once (although this was early in the semester
so of course things might have improved since then). However, I found myself
more confused than before I came. I think it would be great if Rylan spent
more time checking in with students when explaining or, instead of jumping straight
into a conceptual overview of the entire topic, it might be useful to ask the
student questions to see what they understand and what their difficulties/misunderstandings
- Rylan is a very clear explainer and I’ve learned a lot from hearing him discuss
concepts from first principles, but he sometimes elaborates too much on the
details, and I find that this can distract from the core concepts at hand.
I’d recommend trying to focus on getting across one main concept at a time.
- Rylan works through the problems with us, if anything the method is more
important than the answer a it can be generalized and applied to more questions!
- Rylan’s walkthroughs are super helpful! I think group discussions are
a more effective use of office hours time instead of only having one on
one questions. I think it would be great if one TF would answer one-on-one
questions while the second TF does group discussions.
- Rylan is amazing!