Brooks, Kelle  

Architecture

2.38/4.00

8 evaluations


ARCH 251


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Jan 2015
Kelle is new to Cal Poly this year, and I think that can be seen through her teaching. Although she is very nice, I do not think that her feedback on projects was particularly helpful, nor were the 4 hour long group critiques that we had quite often. I had no idea what kind of grade to expect until it was already out, and I think that some parts of the projects were rushed while others dragged on for far too long. Overall, not a terrible option, but definitely not my first choice either, especially with all of the awesome architecture faculty here.


Sophomore
B
Required (Major)
Dec 2016
Look, I'm not trying to rip on this teacher. But if I can dissuade students from taking Kelle Brooks than maybe my time in her class can help others. Don't take Kelle. Whatever you do. Find some other teacher, crash some other ARCH 251 course, I don't care. Kelle is one of the nicest teachers you'll ever meet. Which makes it incredibly difficult when you realize that you're getting assigned way more assignments than any other class. Just to give you a perspective, I spent (and yes, I calculated) $376.40 on studio alone. Kelle makes you print everything out (I bought 10 plotter cards this quarter), model everything out (hope you like cardboard), and sketch everything out. You will not use your computer other than for AutoCAD (and even then you don't have to) or Illustrator. Meanwhile, other studios receive breaks every so often (meaning they didn't have a miniature project due every class period) and most of my friends in other studios only really reached into their wallets for their final review, most of them staying under $100 for the entire quarter. Kelle doesn't understand the concept of time. Touching on the amount of work we had to do, it was asinine. Within the first two weeks we had completed 18 1/8 scale models. And if you are only taking studio and practice, maybe that's good for you. But most of us have other classes. Kelle'e boatload of work started affecting my other classes, most importantly Structures and ARCH 217. I had little to no time to do the homework or study for either class, and I (when I slept) was sleeping for only 2-4 hours every night. That's not healthy, and Kelle doesn't care. She doesn't care if you have 16 other units and she doesn't understand how long it takes to make a good model. Over the course of this class, every single person in my studio (bar one) had their craftsmanship drop ever so slightly due to the amount of "fuck it, she's just going to assign more tomorrow" moments we all had. Overall, if you want to lose sleep, not succeed in your other classes, have a professor who doesn't understand college workloads, and in the end get an arbitrary grade based on how much she liked you and not your actual work, take Kelle Brooks. Otherwise, maybe take someone who knows what they're doing.


Sophomore
B
Required (Major)
Mar 2017
Despite the massive amount of coursework she assigns and expects you to complete(in comparison to other studios) Kelle was a good teacher at first. She is knowledgable about modeling/ drawing and gets by with AutoCad information. However, her teaching style didn't mix well with me. She told me that her style is to not tell a student everything that is wrong with their project all at once because it tends to overwhelm them. However, this meant I wasn't told to make a major change to a project submission until 2 days before it was due. It is extremely frustrating and she constantly demands rebuilds of models at full scale if the aren't tectonically accurate or if you make even a small change. The first project was a series of repetitions on tectonic ideas, which I found helpful, but didn't correlate well to the main project and was an extremely ardorous project, making as many as 13 models in a week at 1/4" scale (3" x 25" base). I think Kelle is a reasonably nice teacher and most students will get along with her, but be prepared to work your but off in comparison to other studios. She doesn't take it easy on practice labs either, like some teachers do. I found myself spending more time working on practice work for her than studio. Lastly be prepared to fork out some major dough. I went through 4 plotter cards in one quarter, and that wasn't including shared printing projects. She wants everything printed fullscale and I was spending upwards of $10 a week. Not to mention the materials you'll need for modeling. I do not recommend this class if your short on cash. I know that you will have a lot of work in all studios for the quarter as you transition from 1st year to second year, but at least don't take Kelle your first quarter in if possible.


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
May 2017
Honestly? I loved Kelle, probably because we think in really similar ways. I do a lot of brainstorming through sketching and physical modeling, and that style is so so conducive to the way she teaches. She is a big fan of printing things out and redlining them, but I really loved that, because it gives her a chance to be specific about graphic representations / conventions, instead of constantly working on your own (without printing) and just hoping for the best. As a result, I got really good at AutoCAD because of the numerous printouts/deliverables. She's definitely very involved throughout the whole creative process, which was a great transition between first and second year, when you start to design your first building (seemed daunting at first, but ends up very doable). If finance is a deciding factor, don't worry, now that the KIP printer is free, the only costs are modeling materials, and even then, it's easy just to find scrap cardboard and modeling materials in recycling bins (I'm a huge fan of scavenging and repurposing, haha) I spent maybe... $50? That's the high estimate. $20 on plotter cards and $30 on modeling materials. Overall --- I recommend Kelle. She has a nice vibe, a quiet resolve and assigns everything with a purpose in mind.

ARCH 252


Sophomore
A
Required (Major)
Apr 2015
I was pleasantly surprised by Kelle. I ended up learning a lot in her studio and practice class. She really helps you learn how to make high quality digital drawings. I also found her feedback on my project very helpful. Overall, I really enjoyed the quarter and I learned a lot in the class.


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Mar 2017
Kelle is a very solid studio professor. I recommend her for anyone looking to challenge themselves, as she does require a lot of work compared to other studios, especially physical modeling. She is highly proficient in developing her student's representational abilities; she will help a lot to advance your knowledge of drawing conventions, and she knows AutoCAD well compared to other professors. Be prepared for a rigorous iterative design process, which includes iteration after iteration of physical models as well as drawings. She will often ask her students to plot and re-plot their drawings many times to improve clarity. She is good at quickly discerning the strengths and weaknesses of her students' work, and I feel that she will generally nudge her students in the right direction. She gives pointed and specific advice, which is a much different teaching style from other professors, who often tend to be vague and will want you to figure it all out on your own. In contrast Kelle has no problem getting more involved in her students' design process. Kellers studio will always start with basic explorations of tectonic systems (plane, frame, and mass), especially in the form of physical models. In my class we were presented the program after these initial explorations, which I thought was a little awkward because we had spent so much time with programless abstract forms and it was hard to integrate those ideas into our final design. I think the best thing about Kelle's teaching style is that she definitely teaches for growth rather than proficiency. It seems like she spends about an equal amount of time with each student and doesn't play favorites as much as other professors. Obviously she will spend more time with students that consistently ask for the help, but I think she's pretty fair about the time spent with each student.


Sophomore
N/A
Required (Major)
Mar 2017
Honestly, I don't get the bad rap that Kelle gets. Yes, she is one of the more demanding second year professors and will assign a lot of work. Yes, there is a lot of model making and plotting. But this is what architecture is about isn't it? I think that her method of teaching the class is very structured; from what I've heard, she almost always starts off with a bunch of tectonic models (mass, plane and frame) to get you to start thinking spatially, which I think is very helpful. Her philosophy is to get students to think simple in second year, obtain a solid range of basic skills and develop them for future studios as they progress. As such, she doesn't put a lot of emphasis on digital modelling and would prefer students to develop their ideas through hand drawings and physical models instead. She is very polite yet always blunt and clear about what she thinks of your project. Every time I have talked to her about my design I leave the conversation with some great ideas, which is not something I can say about every studio professor. As frustrating as it is sometimes (especially when she tells you to move a part of your project which forces you to basically revise the whole design) Kelle is always right. The only downside to her studio is that she is constantly telling you to change large chunks of the design up until plotting for final review, so many of us had to (reluctantly) disregard her advice just so that we could finish our presentations. Oh, and she hates renders, which is reasonable cause most of us second years can't do them properly anyways

MATE 402


Graduate Student
B
Required (Support)
Nov 2016
Missed the first day, went to the second day. Went to the midterm. Went to the Final. Three days of class total. I got a B, easy. This kind of shit gives our school a bad name.