Ralph Williams - University of Michigan

Professor: Ralph Williams
Department: English
College: University of Michigan
Rating # 1
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH451
  • Grade Received: B+
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 3.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
As you see here in the comments, when youre a one-of-a-kind entertaining and wildly intelligent professor, youre likely to generate a love/hate reputation amongst students. To me, Professor Williams was hands down (and hands up, those hands!) my favorite professor thruout college. While some students may prefer dull, I did not. An EPIC guy.
Rating # 2
Overview:
  • Course: ENG351
  • Grade Received: B+
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 5.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
One of the most intelligent men I've ever met. The course was hard due to the pure amount of reading, but so worth it. Go to office hours to chat with him about anything, and also to see his incredible, overflowing library. My friends and I quote him on a regular basis now... "For the wind is very much up"
Rating # 3
Overview:
  • Course: ENG464
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 4.0
  • Course Difficulty: 4.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
Ralph is a kind man and is of a rare breed of intellectual. One can learn a lot from him. However, it can be trying to engage in discussion with him. The papers are lots of work and seem to be unworthwhile. He expects a lot so it can be difficult when one isn't able to match that. Take P/F, such to maximize Ralph-time and minimize work-time.
Rating # 4
Overview:
  • Course: ENG450
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Not Mandatory
Comment:
Very entertaining and insightful. He strikes me as the sort of professor who would have been brilliant when he was in his prime. He can now be unfocused and sometimes repetitive, but he's still great.
Rating # 5
Overview:
  • Course: ENG313
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 4.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
Amazing professor! Life lessons learned. Took him every semester I could!
Rating # 6
Overview:
  • Course: RELIGION258
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 2.5
  • Course Difficulty: 4.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
Ralph claims to welcome all to the table for discourse, but ultimately he doesn't care about what you think unless you're agreeing with him. He welcomes varying interpretations, but if they disagree with his, he disregards them. He seems like a nice guy, but don't take this class unless you're willing to change your viewpoints to agree with him.
Rating # 7
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH 258
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 1.5
  • Course Difficulty: 4.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
Completely disorganized.
Rating # 8
Overview:
  • Course: RELIGION258
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: N/A
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Not Mandatory
Comment:
I haven't met a more engaging man, I sat in on three of his lectures with a friend and I couldn't agree more with people. He is really smart, kind-harted, and a gentleman. He engages everyone with the respect you deserve and is willing to talk to any one, if I could I would take all of his classes
Rating # 9
Overview:
  • Course: RELIGION258
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 2.5
  • Course Difficulty: 3.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
Everything just seemed a bit vague. No due dates for the readings and no tests until the final. Two papers on whatever you please (as long as it's relevance can be argued). Lectures are rambling and theatrical. Perhaps the topic just wasn't of interest to me, or maybe I need more structure than what was given, but this class wasn't my favorite.
Rating # 10
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH451
  • Grade Received: A+
  • Overall Rating: 2.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Not Mandatory
Comment:
I've taken 3 classes wProf. Williams. At first I was a huge fan of his. But I started to realize he uses the same anecdotes and same wandering manner in lectures. Very scattered, doesn't explain concepts in clear manner and asks "Yay or nay" in a way that discourages dissent. I feel like he's trying to impart life lessons, not analyze the texts
Rating # 11
Overview:
  • Course: ENG313
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 3.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
Williams is much more preoccupied with impressing his students through his performances in class rather than teaching you anything, even though he claims the opposite. He's very set in his ways; even though books should be up to the interpretation of the reader, it's his way or you're wronggraded down. I felt like my time and money was wasted.
Rating # 12
Overview:
  • Course: ENG450
  • Grade Received: B+
  • Overall Rating: 3.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
I took Williams because I had heard great things, and I've never been more disappointed. Rather than teach, he really just gives book reports, yet he expects his students to analyze for their essays. However, on the final, he expects you to repeat what he said in class, which I don't view as helpful to me in any way. So, you have to go to class.
Rating # 13
Overview:
  • Course: ENG450
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 3.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Not Mandatory
Comment:
Ralph is a very knowledgable professor and has historical context deeply ingrained into his lectures. Unfortunately, he tends to ramble on in his lectures, leaving an abundance of muddled information. Regardless, his lectures are very eye-opening and interesting.
Rating # 14
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH313
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 1.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Not Mandatory
Comment:
Talk about a guy who shapes your college career--who shapes you for life. Ralph is it. One of the most genuine, enthusiastic, kind-hearted and dedicated professors at UM. I brought a friend from another top-ranked school to sit in on one of his lectures--my friend was floored. He picks great books and speaks about them with unparalleled passion.
Rating # 15
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH356
  • Grade Received: A-
  • Overall Rating: 3.0
  • Course Difficulty: 4.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
It would be a sin go to U of M and not take his class. His lack of schedule and frustrations with that will be made up by wit, charm, and inspiration. He is the smartest guy I ever met- and extremely humble. I still have pages of my notebook from tid-bits I found inspiring in his class. YOU WILL NOT REGRET IT. Sorry for being extreme lol
Rating # 16
Overview:
  • Course: ENG313
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 3.0
  • For Credit: Yes
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: Yes
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
Professor Williams is great! I took "Memoirs and Social Crisis" with him and his insights have truly changed the way I think about the world. Great guy, there for students, and really passionate about what he teaches. Grading expectations were somewhat high, but he's the kind of professor you want to do good for. Lots of EC available too!
Rating # 17
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH407
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 4.0
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: N/A
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
This was my second class with Prof Williams and all I can say is I wish I could take a 3rd. He is an incredibly engaging speaker and steers discussion in incredibly interesting ways. I didn't only learn a lot about course material, but also about how to think. Even if you are not an english major, take a class with Ralph! You won't regret it!
Rating # 18
Overview:
  • Course: ENG407
  • Grade Received: A
  • Overall Rating: 2.0
  • Course Difficulty: 3.0
  • For Credit: N/A
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: Mandatory
Comment:
I agree with everyone that he is a brilliant guy, knows his stuff, enthusiastic, and kind. HOWEVER, respectfully, he does have his blind spots. He'll treat material he disagrees with in a belittling manner and if you raise objections in class he just shuts you down. He's willing to engage in discussion, unless you end up disagreeing with him.
Rating # 19
Overview:
  • Course: ENG313
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 4.5
  • Course Difficulty: 2.0
  • For Credit: N/A
  • Textbook Used: No
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
He's literally the best prof you'll ever have. He greets every single student in lecture every single day; he loves us that much and continually tells us how great it is to share time with us. I LOVE this class. We read memoirs about social crisis (slavery, holocaust, vietnam war, AIDS) and I honestly read all of them 'cause they were all great.
Rating # 20
Overview:
  • Course: ENGLISH351
  • Grade Received: N/A
  • Overall Rating: 5.0
  • Course Difficulty: 3.0
  • For Credit: N/A
  • Textbook Used: Yes
  • Would Take Again: N/A
  • Attendance: N/A
Comment:
Ralph Williams is one of my favorite teacher on campus. Both the breadth and depth of his knowledge is astounding. He's clear and enthusiastic and compassionate; I highly recommend taking any class with him. I read all of Paradise Lost for this guy. He is gold.
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