Carmichael, Andrew  

Physics

2.38/4.00

37 evaluations


PHYS 121


Junior
B
Required (Support)
Dec 2014
Carmichael is an excellent professor and exactly what Cal Poly's physics department needed. I signed up for a staff class terrified of who I was going to get. Carmichael is new and getting used to the quarter system but he did a great job of spreading out the material, tests, and homework. Expect 15-20 homework questions per chapter that will be turned in and graded. There are 2 midterms of about 6 questions and a final of about 10 questions, which I haven't taken yet but he says will be very similar to the midterms--and I believe him! He's not one of those teachers that says oh yeah it'll just be like the homework and the last midterms and then gives you a test that is obviously more difficult. Overall, Carmichael is a great professor that is considerate of his students' needs and will happily slow down the class to address a question. He also often reviews past information in the class which is very helpful. I highly recommend him. I thought physics was gonna completely screw me over but with Carmichael both did well and learned a lot.


Sophomore
C
Required (Support)
Dec 2014
Dr. Carmichael is average at best when it comes to lecture. All he does is spew formulas at you and expect you to know them. He sometimes does examples, but often times he doesn't even show how to use the formulas he teaches you. Then he gets frustrated when students can't figure out the problems. He puts on a nice front in class, but is, for lack of a better word, an asshole in office hours. I went to his office hours a few times because I was finding difficulty with the homework, and all he did was say "Just look at the formula sheet I gave you. You should know this." Going to tutoring or signing up for a study session would be a wise decision if you're not good at physics. Homework and tests were reasonable, it's just his attitude and lack of actually showing us how formulas are used that irks me. Find another professor if you can.


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Dec 2014
This quarter was Dr. Carmichael's first at Cal Poly. He actually arrived on a flight straight from the east coast a day after the class started (due to a delay). Because of this, he didn't have any time to prepare, figure out polylearn, or plan around the quarter system. Taking this into consideration, it came as no surprise that the class was very disorganized (there wasn't a syllabus until the second or third week of school). That being said, Dr. Carmichael definitely knows his physics and genuinely desires to see students succeed. The exams are straight from the homework therefore if you put in the time, you will get the grade you want. I anticipate that the organization problems will resolve as he is given adequate time to plan out his lectures and adapt to Cal Poly. TL;DR Carmichael is a new professor who did well but was disorganized in his first quarter at Cal Poly.


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Dec 2014
Carmichael was a new professor to Poly, and he was kind of a quirky guy. I've taken physics before, but I could see him being a little fast/confusing if you had never encountered this material before. I liked the setup of his class, and I thought the midterms were very fair, almost easy. That being said, there's only like 6 questions, so if you mess up one part, it becomes 10% of your midterm grade that you lost. Not a fan of that. Definitely agree with what someone said earlier. At his office hours, he seemed rather aloof, and wasn't interested in answering my questions to a full extent/talking at all. Also, closed his door during office hours, which I don't think is appropriate. I would take him again because class wasn't that hard


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Jan 2015
Dr. Carmichael is just what the Cal Poly physics department needs. Someone who genuinely enjoys the subject and enjoys teaching it to others. His lectures are always filled with energy and he shows his strong appreciation for the class by giving lots of space examples. He is easy to follow and his homework and exams are all very fair. Go to class, do all the homework, and you should be more than prepared for the exams. And he's an overall cool guy, so that's a plus.


Freshman
N/A
Required (Support)
Feb 2015
I'm in the midst of his Phys 121 and all I can say is TAKE HIM. He's a new professor from England so a lot of his vocabulary isn't the same as here in America. He will tell you a lot of small, interesting facts about the difference between here and England that are usually very funny and somewhat related to Physics. This might be the easiest class ever. I have this class four days a week for an hour and so far, we got out 15-20 minutes early every single day. Now don't be mistaken. Within those half an hour or so of lecture, there's a lot of material. He will help you in any type of way. We always go over homework and do examples from the textbook. The pace of this class is extremely slow. He will review everything we have gone over yesterday and a lot of the times just elaborate a little more and then end of class. Homework is very easy but just a lot of problems. His midterms are structured in a weird way (a mix of multiple choice, short answer, and fill in the blank) but you can easily pass it. If you are taking 122 as well, just buy the book. It's a $200 book and impossible to find an online pdf of.


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Feb 2015
I had Professor Carmichael his first quarter teaching here at Cal Poly and once he got his footing he was an amazing professor. He does rearrange a lot of the formulas which a lot of people did not like but it helped me understand physics. He wants you to succeed and is very helpful during office hours. I wish I could have him for the entire physics series.


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Feb 2015
Dr. Carmichael is a great physics professor. He genuinely cares about the students and their well-being; he starts every class by asking how we are all doing. He always wears a smile during class and is incredibly enthusiastic about physics. He is very knowledgeable and answers every question to his full capability. He teaches through proving/explaining formulas which then can be applied to homework/test questions. His tests are well written and fair; the tests assess not the students' ability to punch numbers into a formula, but instead require students to fully understand the concepts behind the physics. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and learned a lot about physics. I recommend taking a class from Dr. Carmichael.


Sophomore
D
Required (Support)
Mar 2015
While I don't know how he is in other Phys classes, this is by far the most confusing GE I've ever taken. I legitimately tried to understand Dr. Carmichael's formula vomit 4 days a week and still barely managed to scrape by with a D. He is a very confusing lecturer, rushing through sample problems all class, and doesn't even know how to use Polylearn, making it a hassle to find out your current grades on anything while taking the class. If I had cared enough about this class to go to office hours, he does seems knowledgeable enough to have probably helped me achieve a higher grade, but overall I wouldn't recommend this class at all if you don't want to put in a lot of extra effort.


Freshman
A
General Ed
May 2015
Dr. Carmichael is a great professor who sincerely tries really hard to help you understand the subject. He does introduce the material with deriving equations which confuses some students, but as long as you do his homework and just pay attention, it can be an easy class.


Junior
N/A
Elective
Dec 2015
First off, Carmichael is probably one of the best physics professors at Cal Poly. He is very understanding of students questions and was never condescending. Ok, his lectures were pretty skatter brained, with a lot of formula derivation that I felt was unnecessary. The first exam was in week 4, which was fine, but the second was in week 10. WAYYY to late and close to finals. He told us we would have about 7 quizzes and we only got 3. Putting more weight on the 3, obviously. One thing I really want to point out, Carmichael realy wants students to succeed. At the final, he told us not to worry and just do our best, It may seem simple, but to me, who was feeling stressed about it, it helped me a lot. I wish he taught the phys 200 lab along with the class...


Junior
A
Required (Support)
Jan 2016
very nice guy, genuinely cares about his students and wants to make sure everyone understands the material. if you dont understand something do not hesitate to ask and he will not hesitate to clarify, and will hold everything up for as long as it takes for everyone to understand. since he's new you can tell he will do pretty much anything to keep the students happy, he even let us decide when we wanted to have our midterms and quizzes. tests are super straightforward and usually the questions are the exact same as sample problems he'll do in lecture with different numbers. do the homework and ask questions from it in class, if you understand all the homework problems you'll do fine on the test. overall, pretty good professor to have given the lackluster subject matter.

PHYS 122


Junior
A
Required (Support)
Mar 2015
I only had Carmichael for lab, so I can't comment on how he would be as a lecturer. But as a lab instructor he was great. He presented material very clearly. He was always willing to help, and would even stay after class to help students with homework from lecture. He wasn't always very clear about what he wanted us to turn for lab reports, but thats easy to forgive with all his other outstanding qualities. And bonus: hes got an awesome English accent


Freshman
F
Elective
Mar 2016
good!


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Mar 2016
Average at presenting material, great person... the only issue is he's extremely disorganized. His lectures do not reflect his exams. He doesn't always show up to office hours. His exams are pretty disorganized too... For the first one, he forgot to print half the test. For the final, he accidentally put the answer on one of the questions (not like that's an issue, but its amusing). He's a great guy tho and he gets that its a general physics course so he shouldn't make it too hard. BIG TIP: After an exam, go ask him about your test and he usually gives a bunch of points back. I went up an entire letter grade when I asked him about my test lol


Sophomore
C
Required (Major)
Mar 2016
Carmichael is good-natured, but the way he caters to students is to let them out of class early, let us decide which weeks we have our midterms, or says how he's sorry he's not at his best, or says he didn't mean to make a test hard. It doesn't help our learning at all to have him say all these things about how he wants to help us but not have any follow-through. He's very disorganized, makes lectures off the top of his head and just spends the whole class proving different equations without practical applications. This was the breakdown of our class grade: 25% x 2 for two midterms, 20% for lab, 30% for the final. No quizzes, and he posts homework but we never go over examples in class. And the homework is often not reflective of his testing style. His tests were very different from each other. He obviously isn't putting enough effort into being an effective and good professor. He wants to, but gets frustrated when people ask him questions (because he can't explain things in a concise way that people understand).


Sophomore
C
Required (Support)
Mar 2016
He doesn't give any examples in class about the material. But he clearly states the information he wants you to know. You have to do the homework in order to get any practice. But he takes some exact homework questions and puts them on the midterm. He is super confusing because his first midterm was super easy, but his second one was super hard. So he made the final easier to make up for it. He is a super nice english guy. He isn't a terrible teacher, but if you know of a better one i would take them.

PHYS 132


Junior
N/A
Required (Support)
May 2015
So Andrew Carmichael is pretty much one of the best Physics professors you can get at Cal Poly. He has an amazing attitude, is ridiculously excited about Physics, always has a neat bit of trivia and cool stories, and is always quoting movies and comics. He practically bounces into the room, and is always smiling and cracking geeky jokes. He moves through material quickly and precisely, showing all derivations and equations in great detail, and goes to great length to ask the class if they understand how the laws of Physics work. In practice, his tests are extremely fair and straightforward, no trickery to try to catch you off guard. He gives you a very comprehensive equation sheet and allows you to write on it (which I appreciate because I am too lazy to otherwise make a good one). Homework was optional but recommended. He could stand to be a little more organized when it comes to test dates and planning ahead for them. However, he is such a sweet guy, that he will really try not to screw you over. Seriously, he let someone take a midterm early because he moved the date back and they were prepared and wanted to take the test and get it over with. This guy really caters to making sure you are learning Physics the best way for you. Seriously, I failed 132 the first time I took it because my professor was terrible. Carmichael is probably the best Physics instructor I've ever had, and that's including my awesome high school Physics teacher. He really shows that the attitude with which you approach teaching makes a HUGE difference. Take his class, you won't regret it.


Freshman
B
Required (Major)
Jun 2015
Carmichael is a good guy and a good teacher. He conveys the material well and is engaging in lecture. Despite him being a great teacher, he has terrible organization skills. It took him a month to grade our first midterm, and I didn't even get mine back until after our second midterm. He is fair and wants the students to succeed, but is not organized. If you care about knowing your grade throughout the quarter, don't take him. But if you care less about your grade and more about learning the material, Doctor Carmichael is your man.


Sophomore
F
Required (Support)
Jun 2015
Carmichael is an overall ok proffesor. He Is a good teacher and lecturer and easily conveys his material. He is very interested in the physics too which makes it a lot more interesting for you. He is very disorganized though which makes the class hard to follow and can have you showing up for a midterm and then he forgets to print off the midterms. Finally, I believed i was doing well in this course the F speaks otherwise, but then came to at the end of the year find out I had an F. He is a good teacher, but a very lazy man, who never posted grades and makes it almost impossible to know what you got in the class. Also, he is a very hard grader which adds to the challenge of the fact he never gives you your tests or labs back. Overall he's probably better than the rest of the physics department, but still not an excellent teacher


Freshman
A
Required (Major)
Aug 2015
Carmichael is newer to Poly and with that he decides to go easier on his classes. Do ALL the non-required homework because his quizzes and midterms were straight from the homework (literally word for word). Really really smart guy and he knows that 132 is just a stupid filler class so he often goes off on interesting tangents and will continue to if you provoke him. No need to read the book but do do do the homework and you will get an A.


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Support)
Feb 2017
THIS IS THE MOST HONEST EVALUATION YOU WILL EVER READ!!! I am currently taking his class and so far, I am thoroughly not enjoying it. We are currently in week 5 of winter quarter, about to take our first midterm in two days. Let me start with the good things about Dr. Carmichael. First off, he is indeed a great guy. He is really fun to listen to in lecture because he obviously loves so much and goes on tangents about how the material even slightly relates to the content. He will give you make-up points for missing an assignment based on how funny and extravagant your excuse is (so get creative) not even for actually doing the missed assignment. He is engaging in the lesson and is a very smart person. He absolutely LOVES physics. Now to the bad... Now, I have a mess room, and I tend to lose things and forget things a lot, but let me tell you, you will NEVER meet a more disorganized person that Dr. Carmichael. Remember how I said we have our first midterm in two days? We only found that out yesterday. We knew it was sometime this week, but he decided to "leave it up to the class" to figure out when we wanted the midterm to be. A week and a half went by without anyone really knowing when it actually was. I finally emailed him telling him that I didn't know when it actually was, and he then sent an email to the whole class informing everyone that it was indeed THREE DAYS FROM THEN!! Very unprofessional. His lectures, while entertaining, are at the speed of light (pun intended). I have no idea how anyone can first of all talk that fast and second of all write that fast on a chalk board and thirdly, do both of those at the same time. He ONLY does proofs of the same equation over and over and will not do a single example problem. Our "practice" are problems that he posts on poly learn with answer guides that use neither any of the equations that he teaches in class or the equations found on his 8 PAGE equation sheet. He does not assign homework for grading. He also does not give quizzes. There is on midterm and one final (from what I understand) that your entire grade is dependent on. I happen to have him in lab as well, and it is the same way. He does not pass back any lab reports so there is no way of knowing if you are doing things right and actually learning the material, or are just getting everything wrong and have no idea and have no chance of passing any sort of evaluation. Oh and he also does not enter them into poly learn either so you don't even know if you have a passing or failing grade in the class at ay moment. To conclude, If you are the kind of person who easily understands concepts and proofs and know how to apply them effortlessly, this is your ideal professor. You will love this class and will thrive. I will give him credit for effectively and clearly explaining these aspects of the course material. HOWEVER If you are like me and need practice problems and examples and applications i.e. "LEARN BY DOING" (the whole reason any of us are here in the first place) you will hate hate hate hate hate this class. I cannot express this passionate hate enough. I am in utter agony right now in his class. It is nothing against him at all, I just don't learn well with his teaching style. Last quarter, I got an A in Calc IV barely lifting a finger. I know how to study and school correctly, but that professor was my ideal professor. He would introduce a topic and do examples and variations the rest of class. Your decision wether or not to take this is yours alone. I cannot recommend nor advise against him because I don't know your individual learning habits. Read this evaluation carefully, because it is EXACTLY what you will experience. I have no reason to have a positive or negative bias towards him because we are only half way through the quarter. This is the most honest, truthful, and accurate eval. you will ever get on polyratatings. Have a great quarter!!

PHYS 133


Freshman
F
Required (Support)
Jun 2015
Hated this class. So disorganized so it is impossible to know how you are doing. He never got anything back and I lost all respect for him when he just didn't make one of the midterms because he said he was "too busy".


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Support)
Dec 2015
So sick of this dork. Let's start with the good things about him. He is generally nice and wants students to succeed, and engages students somewhat well. Now for his downfalls. He is THE most unorganized professor on the face of the Earth. He pushed back both of our midterms, making our study and preparation for what we thought was going to be the exam a waste of time. We had our second midterm in dead week. You gotta be yankin my dick off dude. Physics 133 contains subjects that are very hard to understand because so much of it is happening on a microscopic level and is difficult to conceptualize. That being said, he does a terrible job of explaining the material. He teaches the material like we are all geniuses that understand it already by deriving every stupid thing you can imagine, hoping the derivation will explain the concept. NOPE! Exams were moderately hard. I had him for 132 also, and he was an okay teacher for 132, but awful for 133. Proceed with caution.


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Support)
Dec 2015
British. Sci-fi nerd. Carmichael definitely knows his stuff. However, just because he is very intelligent does not make him a good professor. He is the most disorganized teacher that I've ever had. He pushed back our first midterm by a few days, and the second midterm by TWO WEEKS, which ended up being during dead week. His exams are difficult, be he grades fairly. You will find out the grade you got on your first midterm around week 9, and you won't get your second midterm grade before the final. He also doesn't hand back his exams in class, you have to go to his office to pick them up. Although he has good intentions for his students, he is an awful lecturer.


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Dec 2015
Professor Carmichael is a really good professor. It's true that he is very disorganized and he pushed back midterms because he didn't write them in time, but it's only his 2nd quarter here and it's his first time teaching the course. If you actually pay attention during his lecture, everything he says makes sense. His tests were very easy and there were no curveballs. He can get off on tangents occasionally, which is annoying if you don't like what he talks about. For the course material being as difficult as it is, he explains it really well. He's very likable and will let class out a bit early occasionally. I'd recommend this teacher if you're the kind of person that can sit in a lecture for and hour and a half and pay attention the entire time.


Sophomore
B
Required (Support)
May 2016
Great person, not so great of a teacher. He spends every single minute of class deriving equations - we did not do a single example problem the whole year. There are no homework assignments and the midterm problems come straight from the book. So it is not too difficult of a class; just don't go to lecture and teach yourself the material at home. This being said I would love to go to a Pub with him on the weekends.


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Support)
Jun 2016
Honestly- I came into this quarter and initially thought Carmichael was a nice guy. Turns out, I was wrong. He is not willing to help students when they don't understand material at all. He tells you 'well, i don't know, just look at the equations.' He spends class time when he doesnt let you out 30 minutes early deriving incoherently and never does one actual example problem or anything close to what his bullshit tests look like. This guy sucks. the physics department needs to hire some lecturers that will actually give a shit like the rest of the professors here at Poly.


Sophomore
B
Required (Major)
Jun 2016
Carmichael is so funny and just a breath of fresh air compared to other stuck up professors. He loves physics so that is why everyone is saying he goes over proofs that he never tests you on, but it's nice to see someone so passionate about the subject. He knows everything you could ever care to know about in physics. Do the non-assigned homework problems and just enjoy his teaching style, he is a genius.


Sophomore
C
Required (Support)
Aug 2016
Carmichael was pretty good and incredibly knowledgeable of 133. He really likes to derive the formulas you use and relate them to Phys 141. He hardly ever uses the book unless it was for an example and he even told us in class that all of his derivations are "fresh and not copied". If you do take him I would recommend reviewing 141 and DO THE HOMEWORK. Even though he doesn't collect it your grade is entirely dependent on the midterms, final, and lab grade. Huge Star Wars, Star Trek, 2001: A Space Time Odyssey fan. Ask him questions about anything and he will make it interesting. Also has an excellent British sense of humor.


Freshman
N/A
Required (Support)
Mar 2017
Carmichael seems super pretentious. He likes to show how smart be is. Consequently, all he does is derive equations. All day. In all of his classes. Sometimes he'll be deriving something and at the end he'll say "oh you don't need to know this I was just doing this for fun." I think we've done maybe 2 or 3 example problems total. His midterms weren't exactly hard, just long. I rarely ever finished one. When your grade in the class is based off of 2 midterms and a final, it's a struggle if you're not a fast worker. In the lab, he never really answers your questions well and will leave randomly. Not a fan.


Freshman
F
Required (Major)
Apr 2017
Professor Carmichael spending the entire class proving equations and telling you what these equations are. THIS IS NOT HELPFUL! He never explains how or when to use these equations he just proves why they exist and then gives you a 13 page equation sheet with all of them on it and expects you to know what you're doing. He is also very disorganized, he takes a long time to grade midterms and never gives back lab reports. He is a horrible lab instructor because he never really explains how to do the labs or gives a layout for what he expects from you and like i mentioned before he never gives back reports so you don't even know how well you're doing. Oh and also something that really frustrated me is that he does not give you a breakdown of how your grade is made up so you have no clue at any point in the class whether you're passing or failing

PHYS 141


Sophomore
A
Required (Support)
Nov 2016
Worst Professor/teacher I have ever had!!! I had taken physics in high school and knew most of the material already and he did not present it well! Tests were easy enough, he assigned hw but completely forgot about it and ended up jut giving out free 100's. He forgot the midterm on the day of the midterm. He didn't have office hours till half way through the quarter and rarely showed up on time to them. Extremely rude and condescending when answering questions. I'm fairly certain he scared a kid who kept asking questions to the point where the kid stopped showing up to class. If you already know physics, its an easy class just show up on test days and turn in something for homework eventually. If you dont know physics I'd highly recommend finding literally anyone else.

PHYS 211


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Dec 2016
Carmichael is an overall swell guy. He always introduces us and asks how we are doing in the class. He is funny and clearly knows the material. However, he was clearly disorganized and would even admit that he was disorganized during lectures. He taught us things that were barely relevant to the material at hand and I actually felt like I learned next to nothing this quarter. On the bright side, there are no examinations in this class so as long as you pay attention and do the HW you are solid. Nice guy, terrible teacher.


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Jan 2017
Great man. At first he had high expectations for the class, but realized that he was and changed his teaching methods. He's an amazing professor and is exactly the types of person the physics department needs.


Junior
A
Required (Support)
Jan 2017
This was a strange class for myself and i think a lot of other people. Professor Carmichael took a very different approach from the traditional teaching style of other courses that I was more used to, which isn't a bad thing unto itself. What happened was that he would lecture every day and cover the required material for the course, and give a homework assignment either weekly or every other week. There weren't any exams except for the final. The homework assignments were only 2-3 problems each due to the conceptual nature of the course, there wasn't much actual work to be done; it was just understanding the material that's important. However, this placed a very significant weight on the homework and many of the students didn't know what to expect on the final or where they stood academically due to the nature of returning homework assignments. All that aside, i really enjoyed the class as Carmichael is an enjoyable lecture and the lack of quizzes/tests made me feel good about coming to class each day without the stress of performing under pressure. I was able to just relax and listen to him talk about physics, which i would think most students majoring in the sciences would at least find interesting. Despite the lack of consistent work, i would recommend reading the book to fill in the gaps and keep up to date with the lectures.

FRSC 282


Freshman
C
Required (Support)
Nov 2016
I learned that if I were to take up hunting, I should shoot deer, not bears, because a bear will hunt me back if I successfully wound it. Fascinating! I didnt know that the key to production and operations management was so brutally simple!