Archer, Graham  

Architectural Engineering

2.00/4.00

41 evaluations


ARCE 211


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Jan 2005
In response to a number of bad evaluations on Graham, I am here to defend him. I found his class to be straightforward and the quizzes and exams contained no surprise material. We reviewed in class before each exam and he took questions we asked and made slight revisions and put them on the test. He did mention that very few students attended his office hours, and I made it over there probably once a week, maybe every other week. So, that may have helped. But the point is, I would gladly take Graham again, he is very intelligent and fairly charismatic, especially for an engineer.


Sophomore
D
Required (Major)
Jan 2005
I found Archer to be a satisfactory teacher. He does an adequate job of conveying the material to students. Homework assignments are long, but he doesn't assign an unmanageable amount of homework. Do the homework though, becuase it can come back and bite you in the ass if you don't watch out. 2 tests - a midterm and a final. They are both straightforward and fair; if you study and know your shit, you will be fine. A couple pop quizzes here and there, but again, if you just show up the majority of the time, and come to class prepared, you should be able to manage a decent grade.


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Feb 2005
i actually liked graham's class! he explained things very explicitly and reviewed a lot before the midterm and final. he is very straightforward and assigns a reasonable amount of homework, which takes a long time but is only collected once a week. his grading system is sorta weird, i'll admit, because i know a few people who had an A going into the final but ended up getting a B in the class because they messed up one problem... other than that graham's great.


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Feb 2005
Graham Rocks. Like every Instructor I have taken here at Cal Poly, they feed off of your questions. Graham was no exception. When lecturing he took the time to explain everything clearly, all you had to do was pay attention and apply yourself to the course. The material was at no point too difficult, or tricky. His homework assignments were long, but thats OK, because they are very straightforward. I highly recommend Graham.


Sophomore
F
Required (Support)
Mar 2005
BEWARE!!!! Graham Archer is the worst teacher that I have ever taken at Cal Poly. He says he gives partial credit and doesn


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Dec 2005
Graham is a nice person, but not a fair teacher at all. His lectures are way too simplified. They don't prepare you for the homework or the 2 tests. AND he loves to complicate things in the tests by rearranging things so they are difficult to comprehend. Lets see what else??? Oh yeah, crappy office hours and then when you do show up, he doesn't even help. I went to his office hours 3 or 4 times but gave up because he never gave specific information that would lead to an understanding of a problem. And now he is trying to get tenure! what the F^(k?!


Sophomore
B
Required (Support)
Dec 2005
This class was not easy. I had to go to the arce tutor lab almost every week and even then it would take me a while to get the information clear, but eventually I would. Yes, Archer does not give the same problems in class as he does in the homework and he adds twists to the tests to make them harder, but isn't that what tests and hw are for. His job is not to teach the exact process to do a problem, but to give examples of how to approach solving a problem. He did a very good job of challenging us while teaching how to solve a problem. I was frustrated A LOT but if the class came easy what would be the point of taking it.


Junior
B
Required (Support)
Dec 2005
He does a decent job explaining the material and he does his best to answer students' questions during class. My biggest complaint is that he's a little cold-hearted. There was a homework problem that no one knew how to do... instead of helping us with the problem, he threatened to put one like it on the final. As it turned out, the question on the final was HARDER than the homework one... harder than anything we had seen before. I wouldn't be surprised in nobody got it right.


Junior
B
Required (Support)
Dec 2005
Archer was a nice guy but his class policies and tests were difficult. I knew he was going to give a pop quiz on a Monday that I had to attend a funeral, so I approached him and told him I would be willing to take the quiz during his Friday morning office hours (the Friday before the Monday quiz), but he flat out said NO to my request. Although his tests are not impossible he throws in tricks and sets up problems in a way to confuse you, which was very frustrating (especially when you've put in the time, done all the work, and feel like you have a solid grasp on the material). If you're strugging, go to office hours and the student tutoring weekly b/c that's the only way I got through this course.

ARCE 212


Junior
C
Required (Support)
Mar 2006
Graham is "the peoples' prof" - He's awesome. He explains material so you can easily understand what's going on. He is great at clearly answering questions and is eager to help you learn. The quizzes and tests come straight from examples in class and homework- no surprises. I got a "C" in the class, but I learned, which is probably what YOU want to do, too, if you understand the purpose of college education. Take Graham and you'll enjoy building mechanics.


Sophomore
B
Required (Support)
Aug 2014
Enjoyed his lectures. His tests are a bit difficult. But fairly similar to the homework.

ARCE 221


Sophomore
D
Required (Support)
Jan 2003
Archer does not seem to grade fairly. A lot of people do not do well in his class. I think the tests were a little hard, and did not accurately reflect the homework.


Junior
N/A
Required (Major)
Jan 2003
Graham really knows his stuff. He obviously has a lot of teaching experience although he is new at Poly. I would highly reccomend him for ARCE majors becuase he presents a solid foundation in statics that carries on into ARCE 222 and 227 (and farther, I'm sure). If you're looking for an easy "A" his class is not the one to take becuade you definately have to understand the material forwards, backwards and inside out to do well on his tests. I felt that he graded very fairly, and if you had a concern about his grading of a test, he will reconsider your test score which I found helpfull. As long as your work is well documented and clear, and you include all the proper units, he is very generous with partial credit. He encourages students to come to office hours and is easy to talk to.


Sophomore
F
Required (Support)
Feb 2003
Professor Archer was a incredibly unfair professor. So many people failed his class that they had to open two new sections. He is unfair with his grading, he would grade one class one way and then grade another a different way on the same thing. Also the grades that you recieved on homework and tests did not accurately relfect your performance in the class. I do not recommend this teacher, stay away if you want to get a good grade in ARCE 221!


Junior
D
Required (Major)
Feb 2003
Well All I have to say is that I had a B- going into the final and ended up with a D in the class. It was one of those finals that seemed to be hard no matter how much you studied. He graded classes differently on the same material. I totally understood everything in his class, got great grades on homework and quizes. I got a C instead of an A on my midterm because I put a positive moment instead of negative. He is intelegent just grades very unfairly.


Sophomore
C
Required (Major)
Dec 2003
Although Graham is a very good instructor and has a lot of knowledge to offer, the guy simply grades unfairly. That is his only downfall that I can think of. I squeaked out a C- in 221, but I swear I should've had a B. I worked my ass off and went to office hours religiously, I felt I had learned the material very well, however, my grade did not reflect it. I was glad I just passed the class, though still dissapointed because I thought I shouldve had a higher grade. He does not curve and grades hard, and as a result, a significant number of students fail his class.


Sophomore
F
Required (Support)
Jan 2004
Professor Archer is not the teacher you want to take for ARCE 221. He doesn't go by the book, and although he may understand the material, he doesn't present it in a way that the class will understand. His test are unfairly hard, the class average was a F. He said that the final would be easier to balance out the midterm but that didn't happen. 70% of your final grade is the final, so even if you do well the whole year, the final will make or break you. I went into the final feeling confident, but walked out knowing I needed to sign up for ARCE 221 again. My advice, don't take Archer.


Junior
No Credit
Required (Support)
Jan 2004
DO NOT TAKE ARCHER AT ALL COSTS. He has to be one of the worst teachers I've ever had. He gave really hard, tricky tests and didn't even seem to care if everyone failed them. Pretty much all the people in my class failed the midterm. For some reason he does not grade on a curve. The homework assignments took hours to complete and were quite difficult. I thought I understood the material, yet still failed the class and now have to retake it. So I advise you all to NOT take him if you want to pass this class.


Sophomore
F
Required (Major)
Jan 2004
Archer is a Professor that can explain the material pretty well, but when it comes to his tests, they FREAKEN hard. I understood the material and all, but his test does not reflect what he teaches. His grading schemes are crazy! 30% for midterm and 70% for final.. his other one was 50% for the final, but because about 90% of the class didn't C's that meant everyone needed to go by the 70% scheme. He says that he'll give an easier final is the midterm was too hard, well... the final was even MORE harder! If you are a person that likes a little twist in their test he's the person for you, but other than that I wont recommend him to ANYONE!!

ARCE 223


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Aug 2003
I have had archer for a couple classes now and overall he's alright. As a person, I think he's a good guy and his classes are not terribly dull. He is definately strict, and unpredictable. I actually got an A+ on his midterm and went into the final with a little confidence, only to fail miserably and get a B- in the class. His tests are just hard, you have to fully understand every concept which doesnt happen from his lectures.


Junior
B
Required (Major)
Dec 2003
I've had Archer for 221, 223, and 227. I've gotten an A, B-, and C+ while putting about the same amount of effort into each class. In 223, I got a 100% on the midterm, did all the hw, did the extra credit lab, and then did so bad on the final i got a B- where I had a solid A. He's a good teacher, and a decent guy, just seek help if you need it. His tests can be ridiculous, and there is no sympathy in the grading. Be prepared to bust your ass to pull off a B or C, anything higher than that is a freak accident or youre a genious.


Sophomore
B
Required (Major)
Nov 2005
Graham is not bad at all. He is actually a great teacher. I dont know what this person wrote below me but they dont know what the hell they are talking about. Graham will do anything to help you pass the class. I have him for 302 now and can teach the stuff pretty damn well. Take Graham, hes not as bad as these people are saying.!!..!!


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Jun 2007
i've had Graham now for 2 quarters and he is one of my favorite teachers so far at cal poly. his lectures are clear and organized and answers questions well. he is also really nice and helpful in office hours. arce is hard, get used to it.

ARCE 226


Junior
B
Required (Support)
Jun 2004
I took Archer for 221 and hated him. I took him again for 226, and thought he was great. Go figure.

ARCE 227


Sophomore
B
Required (Major)
Mar 2003
Archer was an overall good teacher. I agree with the rest of the comments, tho, in that he was unfair in a couple areas. First of all, his homework policy is pretty rediculous. If you try to turn in your homework after he starts writing on the board, he wont let you...no exceptions. Second of all, he put a couple of "tricks" on the final that a bunch of people didnt catch, which cost many people an F on the final, and also in the class (since the final was worth most of the grade). However, if you failed the midterm (like I did), you could make the final worth pretty much your whole grade. It was nice of him to allow this, because the midterm was pretty rough. Graham is a nice, friendly guy. A little strict tho, when it comes to grades and homework...


Sophomore
C
Required (Major)
Apr 2003
Graham is a pretty good prof, however, somtimes he can't really explain things in a different way so you can understand it. Pretty much if you understand his way of doing things, you have a better chance of doing well in the class, if you don't folloe his way of teaching, then you should really go to his office hours and also try to get help from other people to see if they can help you understand the materil in a different way.


Junior
D
Required (Major)
Aug 2004
Professor Archer isn't a very good teacher. I had an A going into the final and ended up with a D overall. He won't help you to make sense of a problem whatsoever. When taking the class you get the impression that he doesn't care about you at all. If you can understand his teaching style then you can probably do decent in the class, but if you can't good luck.


Sophomore
C
Required (Major)
Jan 2005
One thing sums him up....WTF?!?!?!


5th Year Senior
A
Required (Major)
Nov 2005
I think that Graham is one of the best teachers in our department. He goes out of his way to help you understand the material and to help you pass the class. I think that he presents the material in a straight forward manner which is easy to understand. And to the one complaining about 223 and 302: they are harder classes, the material gets harder the higher you get in your major classes. So if you are going to be an ARCE for 5 years, suck it up, because it just gets worse!

ARCE 302


Junior
B
Required (Major)
Oct 2005
BEWARE OF ARCHER!!! stay away from this crazy Canadian. The harder the class he is teaching, the worse he is as a prof (211,212 not so bad. 223&302 are hell with him). His tests are much harder than material presented in class and have all sorts of tricks and curveballs in them. Don't get me wrong, he is a very nice guy and will make you laugh, but he is a VERY HARSH GRADER (tests, homeworks, everything is graded harshly). I would stay away from him if i were you


Junior
B
Required (Major)
Feb 2008
I would avoid taking Graham for critical classes like ARCE302. He is too lazy to solve his own example problems, doesn't clearly answer questions, and makes many mathematical errors in class. He hasn't even mastered critical concepts for the class, like finishing complex moment diagrams. Graham will always take the easy way out. He has the class try and work through the problem on the board for him, and doesn't correct any mistakes made in that process. He told us that most of our ARCE223 notes from last year were totally incorrect because nobody stopped to correct errors on the board in lecture. His homeworks were much more complex than his exam problems, but everyone did poorly on tests because he gave us too little time and always threw us curveballs. He has hinted to us that he gives out grades relative to the other students scores in the class, and tries to separate the A's and B's in somewhat of a bell curve fashion. Graham may be smart, but he doesn't teach his knowledge well, and is just plain lazy.


Junior
N/A
Required (Major)
Feb 2008
notice that all of archer's polyratings on upper division courses are horrible... the only positive ratings are for 211 or 212. archer sucks at teaching hard concepts, gives impossible tests, and enjoys tricking you

ARCE 304


Junior
N/A
Required (Major)
May 2016
Avoid Graham at all costs. He's not just a bad teacher. He is a disgrace to the entire department. He is a fan of crippling students' education, giving sloppy and lazy lectures, giving hour-long quizzes in order to avoid lecturing, and giving ridiculously complicated design problems and telling us to figure it out while he sits there and gets paid to do nothing. He does not care for his students whatsoever. You can try as hard you can in his class, but if you do not catch on from his terrible effortless lectures, he will not hesitate to fail you and fully believe that it is 100% your fault, not even one bit his own. He is zero help in office hours. He tends to give short and generalized replies, and he will stare at you like you're an idiot if you still don't understand the problem. He makes students feel hopeless when they don't understand a concept, because as soon as you don't understand something, you're basically on your own. Its ironic what a terrible teacher he is vs what a harsh and relentless grader he is too. If you didn't know, he is the president of CFA SLO (Cal Poly's faculty union). He is the one who was willing to deprive students of a week's worth of education that they had already paid for. That's 1/10 of your quarterly tuition. And for what? So that the high up's like Graham could have an increase in salary? Granted, certain professors like John Lawson and Cole McDaniels actually deserve a fair salary. But the fact that the biggest scumbag of all was the one leading the strike, demanding more money when he deserves none of it, is the biggest contradiction yet. Something needs to be done about this teacher. He has tenure and he is the CFA SLO president, so they will never fire him unless it is due to misconduct or some kind of student protest. Its absolutely f*ed up that he is allowed to just carelessly screw up so many critical aspects of so many students' structural engineering educations.


Junior
N/A
Required (Major)
Jun 2016
Incidentally, graham is an extremely lazy professor. Regrettably, I had no choice but to take him for timber this quarter. Indubitably, he is the WORST PROF IN ALL OF ARCE.

ARCE 305


Senior
A
Required (Major)
Nov 2016
Graham makes his lectures pretty damn clear. He runs through examples that are really similar to his quizzes and tests so I dont understand why everyone is so confused and thinks he is such a bad prof. Especially if you attend his office hours, he will be extremely helpful and make sure you learn the material. The only unfortunate part is that he does not prepare very well for his lectures

ARCE 322


Junior
F
Required (Support)
Jul 2004
Graham is a difficult teacher. The quarter I took him for steel a majority of the class did so poorly on the midterm that he had to give us another one so that at least a percentage of the class would pass; which ultimately didn't help much of us in the end. He doesn't grade on a curve which hurts a lot of people's grades. He's good during office hours for information on the homework but his midterms and finals don't reflect anything on the homework or the example problems in class.

CRSC 358


Graduate Student
B
General Ed
Nov 2016
Prof cried today.... What a weirdo hahahah get a grip of your life.

ARCE 371


Junior
A
Required (Major)
May 2015
I liked Graham's teaching style. He expects you to do most of the learning on your own, so you just have to really put the effort in to learning the material outside of class. He is also a super cool guy. I really like hanging out with Graham.

ARCE 444


Senior
A
Required (Major)
Dec 2012
Indubitably.

ARCE 483


Senior
N/A
Required (Major)
Nov 2011
This teacher is an absolute disgrace. What you've heard about his laziness is only topped by his inability to care about his students. Graham is also guilty of lying to me about my final grade in his class; in an e-mail he sent to Al Estes he said I got a certain percentage(%59.89)while in an e-mail he sent to me he said I had another. He held up my graduation date by six months because he "didn't have office hours in the summer." Does that sound like a guy who is helpful? Graham is currently under investigation by the Cal Poly Fairness Board for lying to a student and unprofessional conduct. Not only should you not take him, you shouldn't let this terrible human being teach at such a prestigious university.

ARCE 502


Graduate Student
A
Elective
Dec 2015
Archer is an expert in higher-order effects. He sets the tone in a great way the first day, he tells you to call him Graham. He really cares and you can tell he really loves the material. This class was super tough, there was no text book: just the lecture notes.