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Professor Ratings & Grade Distribution Data for Brian Drake

Brian Drake
Professor (2008 – 2015)
Georgia (UGA)
History
Rate Professor
 
3.9357***+
Overall rating
Rated by 140 students
2.71
Avg GPA
across 6 classes
Fall 2015 Schedule
Add to schedule MF 9:05am-9:55am,
W 10:10am-11:00am
Add to schedule MF 9:05am-9:55am,
W 10:10am-11:00am
All Classes
HIST 2111
HIST 2112
HIST 2112H
HIST 3073
HIST 3160
HIST 4725
HIST 4960H
HIST 4990

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Most Helpful Favorable Professor Review
Most Helpful Critical Professor Review
5*****
HIST 2112 - American History Since 1865
First off, Drake's class is not easy. Everyone says that it depends on your TA...but truth is this: if you go to class, discussion, and read the books you will do fine (granted that you can remember the info).
This isn't your typical history class.....
Read the full review >
Pros: Awesome lecturer
interested in material
no attendance for lecture
No textbook (but small books)

Cons: Tons of reading
must pay attention to detail
attendance for discussion group
Professor rated by: Marketing Student on 7/3/13
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+8 Helpful
2**
HIST 2112 - American History Since 1865
Drake is great but his class isn't. The tests were ridiculous in my opinion. They completely depended on which ID terms and quotes were selected and if those were the topics you knew in detail. I would not take the class over again.
Pros: -Drake is an awesome lecturer. He makes the class pretty interesting and he really knows his stuff. I actually enjoyed the lecture most days
Cons: -Tests were unnecessarily hard. Short essay and quote identification AKA it was hit or miss. There was so much information to study that you never knew what to focus on.

-Breakout section was easy but pointless. Had to turn in weekly questions over the readings and then class discussion was unhelpful mostly because it was unorganized and the discussions were random. At least mine was.

-Readings were also pointless. They related to the class material but didn't do anything to enhance it.
Professor rated by: Economics Student on 7/1/13
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+2 Helpful

Student Ratings 1 - 20 of 140

 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Awesome lecturer

interested in material

no attendance for lecture

No textbook (but small books)



Cons: Tons of reading

must pay attention to detail

attendance for discussion group
First off, Drake's class is not easy. Everyone says that it depends on your TA...but truth is this: if you go to class, discussion, and read the books you will do fine (granted that you can remember the info).

This isn't your typical history class... he focuses on the "importance" of events rather than the facts about them. So when we were talking about WWII we didnt talk about the battles or whatever, we talked about the IMPACT afterwards. I prefer this because its not about memorizing dates and places, its about how it changed the world after an event.



It is imperative that you do the readings though. I read about 90% of them, and it paid off. Try and read them in time for discussion because it will help your understanding. Some books he just gives you sections to read, other books he makes you read like half the book (those are the ones I didnt read the entire thing).



So, basically you CAN make an A in this class if you put forth the effort and get on your TA's good side (since they will be grading) so that means TALK in lecture (I did and it worked). The term paper at the end is sort of a drag... but if you start in advance it would help a ton.
Professor rated by: Marketing Student on July 3, 2013
Helpful Rating?
YES
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HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
4****
Pros: Knows his subject and makes the class very interesting. Highly suggest him.
Cons: Tests are essay format and you HAVE to start studying at least a week in advance. Lot of reading. Some of it is engaged and some of it isn't.
Depending on the T.A. you have the class will be easy or hard for you. If you get one named Kainen Morel switch immediately!!! He doesn't know anything about American History and is extremely rude to his students.
Professor rated by: Child and Family Development Student on November 7, 2011
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
4****
Pros: Drake is very fun to listen to in lecture.

Explains everything you will need to know for test.

tests are not cumulative
Cons: Very hard cumulative end of term paper
The class is very heavily reliant on who your TA is. Many students struggle in the class but I have found that this comes from studying issues more than anything else. My advice for studying is to record all the lectures on your computer and then go back to listen to them. the class tests are not cumulative and generally cover very easy topics. The biggest struggle I found was the end of term paper. There is a lot of reading but you get an entire week to read everything before the next breakout session. In general the class is not bad.
Professor rated by: History Student on December 7, 2011
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
2**
Pros: -Drake is an awesome lecturer. He makes the class pretty interesting and he really knows his stuff. I actually enjoyed the lecture most days
Cons: -Tests were unnecessarily hard. Short essay and quote identification AKA it was hit or miss. There was so much information to study that you never knew what to focus on.



-Breakout section was easy but pointless. Had to turn in weekly questions over the readings and then class discussion was unhelpful mostly because it was unorganized and the discussions were random. At least mine was.



-Readings were also pointless. They related to the class material but didn't do anything to enhance it.
Drake is great but his class isn't. The tests were ridiculous in my opinion. They completely depended on which ID terms and quotes were selected and if those were the topics you knew in detail. I would not take the class over again.
Professor rated by: Economics Student on July 1, 2013
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2111
American History to 1865
4****
Pros: Dr. Drake gives the most interesting lectures. He is engaging and entertaining. History was never one of my favorite subjects, but this class was truly interesting.
Cons: He says at the beginning of the semester that he doesn't really give A's. You should actually listen to this. is TA's grade the tests, and they are incredibly harsh. All of the tests are written essay tests, 8 questions. Tests have random points taken off with no explanation. The paper is graded the same way. He doesn't give you any idea what to study on the tests. I ended up with a B in this class.
Great teacher, bad grading system. Those of us who get Hope, who study hard and take our grades seriously, don't really appreciate his Wild Card approach to grading. I would absolutely recommend him, if you don't mind studying hard and still getting a B.
Professor rated by: Economics Student on May 11, 2012
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: His lectures PowerPoints are in the form of outlines and what he says follows the outline so he's easy to follow. He makes things interesting by putting it in "real" language making it easy to understand and remember. If you take good notes from his outlines you'll do fine in the class.
Cons: the break out sessions are kind of dull and the reading is boring, but if your TA is good they'll help make sense of the dense reading.
By far the BEST history teacher I've ever had
Professor rated by: Marine Sciences Student on April 11, 2012
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Enthusiastic and informative lecturer
Cons: Tests and papers are completely dependent on who your your TA is. I got 70's on my papers while my friend got 95's on hers and mine were obviously more in depth and had better content.

Challenging course, especially if history isn't your thing
It really is all about your TA, which is unfair. The class was extremely hard for me and should not have been so considering it is a Franklin core class.
Professor rated by: Psychology Student on November 5, 2014
Helpful Rating?
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NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
4****
Pros: Really interesting material and I certainly learned a lot. Drake is a great professor. Highly recommend.
Cons: All exams are essay format but it really is not too difficult. Only downside is if you have the Tuesday/Thursday class you will not be able to discuss the historical documents in a breakout session - and a select few are on the exams.
2 tests / 3 papers / 1 final - all very manageable if you put forth the time/effort.
Professor rated by: History Student on May 9, 2014
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
4****
The lecture classes are quite boring, but the discussion sessions are very interesting and really get you involved. Grades and interest really depends upon your TA.
Professor rated by: Biology Student on October 28, 2009
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: -He's such a good speaker that it's pretty impossible not to find yourself at least moderately interested in his lectures.

-Knows a lot about history and is very passionate about it.

-Funny guy, likes to joke around, which prevents lectures from becoming too stagnant and boring.

-Offers several extra credit opportunities.

-No attendance policy for the lecture portion of the class.

-Multiple movie days during the semester!
Cons: -Your tests and papers are graded by your TA, so how well you do is at their discretion.

-LOTS of reading. However, all you really need to read from the textbook are the Document Projects at the end of each chapter - those are what you'll be tested on.

-There are three additional books you have to read, all three of which you must write a 3-4 page paper on.

-If you miss more than 2 discussion section classes, points will be deducted from your grade.

-Tests are all writing, no multiple choice. You have four IDs and one quote pair. And 50 minutes to write them in.
Honestly, I thought this class would be awful. I've never been good at history. However, as it turns out, I've gotten As on everything. The syllabus makes it sound impossible to make an A on papers, but that is untrue, at least with my TA. As long as you actually attend lectures and discussion sections, you should be able to make at least a B in this class.



Also, if you're wondering who the best TA is - my vote is for Luke Manget.
Professor rated by: Psychology Student on December 5, 2014
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: -Lectures are really great, they entertain while revealing so much about history you never thought of.
Cons: -Your grade massively depends on the TA.

-Some weeks have only 20 pages of assigned reading while others have up to about 160 pages.
Go to the lectures, they show you so much about the interesting parts of History. Attendance isn't taken at the lectures, but they help so much for giving you ideas for the written portions of the exams as well as the essays you have to write. The only part of the class that takes attendance is the discussion section, which may or may not have an unannounced quiz based off that week's reading. The quizzes vary in difficulty, since a different TA makes each one of them, like everyone in my discussion section got 100s on the first quiz but then 60s and 70s on the second, it's not that big of a deal since the quizzes are only 5% of your grade, but it does show that the difficultly of your class is dependent on your TA.
Professor rated by: Computer Science Student on December 28, 2014
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112H
History of the United States 1865 to Present (Honors)
5*****
Pros: Interesting lectures

Energetic, funny, kind person
Cons: Grade consists of only 2 major papers (attendance/participation does factor in)

Heavy reading (can skim, however)
I've never even remotely enjoyed a history course before, but I looked forward to Drake's class every day. His lectures were interesting, and he told history the way it should be -- as a relevant and interesting story. The readings were a bit heavy, but seriously his class made everything worth it. It definitely wasn't an "easy" course, as the papers were difficult, but without a doubt it was completely worth it. Maybe the most interesting class I've taken at UGA. Definitely one of my favorite professors.
Professor rated by: Biology Student on December 9, 2015
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Really funny

Lectures are interesting enough to remember
Cons: Tests are short-answer where he gives you some terms and you have to write as much stuff that you know about those terms; it's kind of difficult because you never know what specific pieces of information he wants on the topic

I had Michele as a TA and she was absolutely horrible: took forever to get grades back, made sure we knew that she cared more about the rest of her life than our class (example: "I was supposed to return your papers next week, but I'm going to Cleveland so I'll have it back to you in the next three weeks"), treated the class as a literature class rather than a history class (took major points off of papers for long paragraphs, "outdated" phrases, etc.), really tough grader (you could never tell if she would give you an A or a C on your test... even if you knew the information)
The instructor is great and makes history pretty fun... just beware of what TA you get
Professor rated by: Journalism and Mass Communication Student on November 30, 2015
Helpful Rating?
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NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Interesting, funny, engaging.
Cons: A lot of reading
Here's the thing, the reason I put reading in the cons is because that's literally the only challenging part about this course. The tests are difficult, but they're based on your interpretation of history, and that's so awesome.

Drake's lectures are not ones you want to miss, they're super engaging for the most part and if you go to them you'll have a higher understanding of the "why" and "how" that he's always asking on the tests.

His technique is analytical and investigating. Specific dates are irrelevant, he only asks that you remember big names (which are easy cause you're always talking about them).

If you read the documents and refer to them on tests (why it relates, is important, etc) you're golden.

Also - we had tons of pop quizzes on the documents this semester so READ THEM, not super hard.
Professor rated by: Journalism and Mass Communication Student on December 7, 2015
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2111
American History to 1865
3***
The only nice things I can say about him are that he's at least enthusiastic about his subject and is good about posting his powerpoints online. This class is pretty difficult- the papers are a pain and are graded very anally, and reading all of the books makes you want to shoot yourself in the face. And you might get screwed and get a bad TA. Some of the TAs have no idea what they're talking about. The tests are all essay- some people have trouble finishing them in the time allowed. You have to know what you're talking about and provide a lot of detail in your essays in order to get a decent grade. All in all, a very unenjoyable experience. I wish you luck if you decide to take this class.
Professor rated by: Biology Student on April 15, 2011
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Drake is a good lecturer and he's very passionate about history, so you won't be bored. He uses a lot of photos, videos, and interesting side-notes to help you remember the info. It's not about memorizing dates/names but understanding what happened.
Cons: lots of writing on tests.
no attendance, but you need to go if you want the info. Grading depends on the TA, mine was Sam, he was great. Drake will answer any of your questions after class. Tests are all essay writing, you'll need to learn to write fast and try to predict the questions. He's good at telling you what to focus on. The final isn't cumulative which is really nice.
Professor rated by: Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Student on April 27, 2015
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
3***
Pros: The lectures are very interesting. And the notes are detailed. The TA's are willing to help you when needed.
Cons: The tests are all essay. No multiple choice. You have to cover a lot in all of your answers, and there are very few questions actually on the test. You must take notes very quickly. A few of the TA's did not speak English very well, and it made it very difficult to communicate with them.
There is a large research paper to be written at the end of the year, but it is the only homework/ projects that are assigned. A young and interesting professor. Dr. Drake really know the information that he is teaching the class.
Professor rated by: Marketing Student on April 17, 2011
Helpful Rating?
YES
NO
 
 
HIST 2111
American History to 1865
4****
Pros: Nice guy, passionate about history. He made lectures go by much faster, especially since we only used the whole hour and fifteen minutes maybe twice in the semester. He engages you in lecture not by awkwardly asking the auditorium questions, but just by his inflection, intelligence, and his modern day speech (not a regular boring history buff) The tests weren't bad and were manageable with minimal studying.
Cons: The tests included quote identifications from the readings, and there was a good amount of reading, so sometimes that was a bummer, but it wasn't anything a good class made google doc couldn't help you out with ;)
Professor rated by: Journalism Student on July 26, 2012
Helpful Rating?
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HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
4****
Pros: Dr.drake is very interesting. He focuses on key events in history. He doesn't grade the tests,but the tests are fairly easy if you make an effort to study. He also gives three book reports which aren't too bad but require time.
Cons: My TA was a strict grader and getting an A is really tough in this class, especially if your not a history major like myself.
Dr. Drake is a great teacher. The tests and papers are based almost entirely off of the lectures. If you show up to class and make an effort to study lecture notes you should be able to get a B pretty easy. An A takes a lot of work, and it depends totally on your TA.
Professor rated by: Business Student on November 26, 2015
Helpful Rating?
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NO
 
 
HIST 2112
American History Since 1865
5*****
Pros: Extremely interesting class! Lectures are great. Drake has a gift for public speaking and teaching. He focuses on big concepts how specific events in history fit in with the big concepts.
Cons: History is hard at UGA, and if you get a bad TA, you're screwed, but at least the class itself is interesting. Most of the TA's are pretty good this semester at least.
If you take this class, even though lectures don't have required attendance, you should still go to class regularly! It helps you know what to focus on in the reading which helps a lot when you take the tests.
Professor rated by: Journalism and Mass Communication Student on November 12, 2013
Helpful Rating?
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