Martin Widzer
School:University of Denver
Department: International Studies
Location:Denver, CO
Overall Rating
rated by 13 students
Helpfulness
Clarity
Easiness
Rating Comment
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Pros: Best professor I've ever had, really knows what he is talking about. Makes class fun and entertaining, you feel like you really learned something in the end.
Cons: Will be difficult if you are the kind of student who needs notes written on the board or a pre-made study guide. You are own your own for note taking and studying for quizzes.
Great class
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Pros: Will prepare you for the real world, especially considering the brutality of politics
Will not sugar coat and will tell you when you were wrong
Widzer is my favorite professor at CSU, he is willing to guide you on the proper career path in order to be successful. He may appear intimidating initially,yet his personality and teaching strategy inspires growth for a student to critically think
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Cons: Grading system not clear.
Very rude and disrespectful toward students. Grading system doesn't make sense.
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Pros: Very knowledgeable about International Security. Forces you to think, treats you like a graduate student/junior analyst. Has high expectations but not unreasonable.
Cons:
Dr. Widzer was one of the most engaging instructors I had during my collegiate career. This class in particular was, in his words, a graduate level course being taken by undergrads. As such, the difficulty was there, but he wasn't completely unfair. I did not complete the readings as I should have, and sometimes felt out of my depth during discussion. That said, I learned a great deal. Don't expect him to throw an A at you unless you put in the effort. He'll recognize the hard workers. Come in with thick skin, his sarcasm and language can be taken the wrong way by the more sensitive students, but if you're wrong he will tell you why.
In terms of workload:
-2 online quizzes which were moderate in difficulty (take thorough notes in class)
-4 policy briefs (only a page long but he will tear it apart if you don't do the requisite research and/or just make stuff up)
-1 negotiation simulation for the final (again, do the research and know your role)
First rate instructor. if you want an easy class to screw around in and get easy A's go look somewhere else. If you want a challenging, but forgiving, course that you'll actually learn something in, this is for you. Ask questions and be involved and it'll pay off
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Pros: Very knowledgeable and teaches the class in a style that is very engaging for students. He is funny and sarcastic so if you are very sensitive his teaching style may come off as offensive, but you will get over it. The movies we watched were actually good movies, not the typical boring documentary or outdated movies you have watched in other classes. The "simulation" project was less stressful than a typical final exam, and I learned more from it too. If you work hard, and show interest in the class it's not hard to get a passing grade.
Cons: He is not on campus frequently. However his TAs are and he is always available if you make an appt or prior arrangements after class.
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Pros: Knowledgeable, smart, funny and engaging
Cons: Flies by the seat of his pants type instruction, as a result do not miss class!
He was my favorite professor while at CSU and helped me to see more of what is out in the world, more of the problems that need fixing. He is an inspiration and a joy to be around, provided you get his sense of humor. He managed to quote comedian George Carlin in a funny and apt way, making the class that much more enjoyable. Bottom line, take his courses, you won't regret it!
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Wonderful teacher by far my favorite. Extremely funny and intelligent. I learned more in this class than I did in most.
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Pros: Fun class.
The guy knows everything!
Cons: Rarely in Fort Collins so be prepared to talk to your TA's.
I really enjoyed the class and learned a lot from Professor Widzer.
Make sure you talk in class and get to know your TA's.
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Pros: He is very knowledgeable and has a lot of really cool experiences to share. He is funny and entertaining. He really makes you think and answer questions yourself.
Cons: He has his TA's do all of the grading.
This class is very geared towards people who are interested in military things. Wars, arms dealing etc. He is really a pretty good professor. We have watched a few good films and he always keeps lecture interesting. We do not take exams, instead we have 3 online short quizzes (which are a challenge) and we write a few papers.
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Pros: Very knowledgeable about International Relations. Very engaging and gives a lot of hints about every quiz, test, and paper.
Cons: Rarely on campus, but his TAs typically can answer all of your questions.
Talk in class! He loves it and the TA’s notice.
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Pros: sarcastic and funny and has life experience in what he's teaching and uses stories from those experiences to help teach.
I loved this class. I thought it was really interesting and I think it was due to Martin. He was an excellent teacher and I learned a lot from him.
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Pros: Widzer knows his stuff. He has worked in the real world, including at the United Nations as well as working as a bartender/owner. This gives him a insightful yet down-to-earth perspective.
Cons: A bit of a prick. If you're wrong, he'll call you out on it. But honestly, I think you learn a lot from that experince.
I learned to think! To not just read the headlines and accept that as truth. I also leaned that US foreign policy is not as clear-cut as it often seems. There are many stakeholders (both foreign and domestic) and all their view weigh on the outcome of US decisions and results. Awesome insights.
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Pros: Is engaging and honest
Material is easy
Class Participation (and knowing the material) will net you brownie points
Cons: Is somewhat sarcastic.
Midterm and term paper were 50-60% of the overall (If you do bad on these you will do terrible in the class)
Dr. Widzer is a helluva' good professor if you're used to learning through communication. Also, it helps if you go into this class knowing something about anything. I was one of the few people who participated (read: all the time). I wasn't supposed to get above a B (due to having missed a test) and he threw me an A anyway, because I got an A on the midterm and term paper. The book reading is pretty dry but he links everything together with what's going on in the world and after the first exam on the different theories on IR (Online tests that you can use google for though you shouldn't, learning it is actually beneficial to the later exams and midterm) I didn't even have to open the book again. Overall, if you have the ability to retain information, but most importantly, concepts, without reading, this will net you an A. Highly recommend him for his sense of humor (he's a sarcastic jackass if you say something stupid and I did a couple times) and his presence in the class.

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