Koofers

Professor Ratings & Grade Distribution Data for John Chermak

John Chermak
Professor (2004 – 2015)
Virginia Tech (VT)
Geosciences
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4.0538****
Overall rating
Rated by 130 students
2.99
Avg GPA
across 3 classes
Fall 2015 Schedule
Add to schedule TR 12:30pm-1:45pm
Add to schedule TR 11:00am-12:15pm
All Classes
GEOS 1004
GEOS 1024
GEOS 1124
GEOS 6604

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Most Helpful Favorable Professor Review
Most Helpful Critical Professor Review
4****
GEOS 1024 - Resources Geology
Chermak's the man!

I learned a lot about the world's resources and all, but then I also noticed that he's a huge environmentalist. He hates Big America and goes on and on about how we're doing everything wrong and we're going to all die in 40 yea...
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Professor rated by: Business Information Technology Student on 1/18/07
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+13 Helpful
3***
GEOS 1024 - Resources Geology
This was a pretty hard class for a GEO 1XXX class. Chermak is extremely biased and it's very clear in his lectures, even when he claims he's just giving the facts. He can also be pretty rude to his students. There are always a few BS questions on the...
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Professor rated by: Industrial and Systems Enginee Student on 5/12/08
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+8 Helpful

Student Ratings 1 - 20 of 130

 
GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
Chermak's the man!



I learned a lot about the world's resources and all, but then I also noticed that he's a huge environmentalist. He hates Big America and goes on and on about how we're doing everything wrong and we're going to all die in 40 years.



Also, on a chart he had in his PowerPoint, he modified a bar graph and extended one part of the graph to be even higher to stress his point. (We could see he did a weak job hiding up his edit... He just made a longer blue bar in PowerPoint over the real image). So, I'm not sure how reliable all of his numbers are... and he has a pretty strong bias.



Study the Koofers and you'll do GREAT on the exams!



Extra credit is also given if you attend class... which is really nice (it doesn't count against you if you don't go, but just go and take the Extra Credit!)



Overall, it's an easy and decently fun class. Why else would they call it Rocks 4 Jocks?
Professor rated by: Business Information Technology Student on January 18, 2007
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
This was a pretty hard class for a GEO 1XXX class. Chermak is extremely biased and it's very clear in his lectures, even when he claims he's just giving the facts. He can also be pretty rude to his students. There are always a few BS questions on the test. Be sure to take advantage of ALL extra credit opportunities because they're pretty rare and worth the time. Don't waste money on the book.
Professor rated by: Industrial and Systems Enginee Student on May 12, 2008
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
Pros: -Easy A

-25% of grade is participation (with I-clicker)

-One of the easiest Area 4 courses offered by VT

-Counts for Area 7 CLE as well
Cons: -BORING

-Lots of rants

-Can be politically polarizing
I was registered for this class my first semester here and I was expecting to learn about rocks. That is NOT AT ALL what you learn, instead it is a class about natural resources and their impacts on the environment. Chermak is a huge environmentalist and half of his classes are rants about how people aren't making the environment their top priority. He shoves his beliefs down everyone's throats and will make you regurgitate what he tells you on the exams.



Also, 25% of your grade is a huge group project where you are randomly placed in groups and you make posters about a certain natural resource. He gives you a template, your team types the information and pictures he wants, and then he prints them for you to present at GLC for one of your class periods.



The project does suck, however, it takes the pressure off the exams because there are 3 in total each being worth only 10% of your grade (30% of total grade). He gives everyone a practice test prior to each exam and there are additional questions to access on Koofers.



There is no final since the 3rd exam is taken on the last day of normal class.



The last part of the grade is Scholar quizzes for book chapters, which is worth 20% of your grade. Most of the questions are on tiny details in the textbook (only use for textbook) that you can skim through.



Grade Breakdown: 25% Participation (I-clicker), 25% poster project, 30% tests (3 tests, 10% each), and 20% scholar quizzes.



Overall, take the class for an easy A and to cover a lot of CLE's. It's an annoying class, but it is better than most other Area 4 classes.
Professor rated by: Finance, Insurance, and Business Student on March 24, 2016
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
Overall, Chermak's a good professor. He is very passionate about his class and the things he teaches. Sometimes the class was a little boring, but for the most part it kept my attention. The only thing that bothered me about this class were the tests. They are soooo tricky, it's unbelievable. Make sure you know the questions on the practice exam he gives out and the ones on koofers. Know the questions backwards and fowards and with any change in a single word, such as putting a NOT infront of something. These simple changes completely throw the answer to the questions, so make sure while taking his tests you read carefully. You want to fly through it because you know all the answers because thats what you studied right??, wrongg-take you time, be the last one in there, that's his strategy. But you should definetly take this class, its easy to get an A, just make sure you go to class and study for the exams.
Professor rated by: University Course Series Student on July 27, 2008
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
Pros: 20% of your grade is attendence. Another 20% is online reading quizzes that can be taken as many times as you like. So basically you start the class with a 40%.
Cons: Exam questions are confussing, you will have to go to class and take good notes to know how to anwser his questions.
Class consists of 3 exams that are not cummlative. Each exam is 20% of your grade. The other 40% is attendence and online quizzes. The material in this class is easy and mostly common knowledge. However, Dr. Chermak's Exam questions can be difficult and confussing. He gives you a practice exam before each test. These questions will show up on the exam, so make sure you know the correct anwsers. If you find the practice questions hard, you should take better notes in class. Also, whenever he does an i-clicker question in class, write it down b/c it will be on the test, even if it is the class voting on their opinions... write it down with the results.



This is a pretty easy class and it gives you an area 4 and 7 at the same time.
Professor rated by: Psychology Student on December 22, 2011
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
This class was by far the easiest class ever. He always gave practice quizzes for every exam and then the real things were basically 80% the same as the practice. On top of that, he is really passionate about what he is teaching and has actually been to places and done research and conservation efforts. I found this class really enjoyable. I would highly recommend it.
Professor rated by: Marketing Student on August 27, 2008
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
The class is pretty much what you expect it to be. You learn about resources for the whole year. It gets pretty boring because I mean how long can coal or natural gas be interesting? The tests are not too hard but you must read the book and at least review the lecture slides. He does post the slides and points are awarded for attendance. Resources aren't that interesting and Chermak doesn't help. Read the book and listen and you will do fine; extra credit opportunities were available.
Professor rated by: Chemical Engineering Student on December 20, 2012
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
Pros: great teacher

does his best to make the subject interesting.
Cons: classes can get boring sometimes

tests are harder to study for
Professor rated by: Business Information Technology Student on January 11, 2014
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
exams were a little weird... either had way too many answer choices... or were a little biased...



"global warming...

a. is a crackpot theory made up by scientist conspirators

b. is definitely happening right now"



... that was an exam question. also uses the terms "piece" and "from a _______ perspective" excessively to the point where my friend and i made a drinking game for his class but decided not to play, as it would give us alcohol poisoning.



doesnt put notes online.
Professor rated by: Psychology Student on December 11, 2007
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
Pros: I loved Dr. Chermak! He was easily one of if not my favorite professor freshman year. While the material he discussed was interesting to me, I realized it wasn't interesting to everyone. But he tried to make it engaging so that everyone could relate to it. He really knows what he's talking about and is a great professor. Quizzes were online & open-notes, no time limit, no submission limit.
Cons: Can be boring in lecture & sometimes talks about his own opinions. If you don't agree with him, okay, but we had a kid in my resources class challenge him on the topic of climate change and he got shot down nicely but forcefully by Chermak. Also, the exams were tough, so make sure you study really well before taking them.
Professor rated by: Political Science Student on April 24, 2013
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
Pros: He's a nice guy and knows what he is talking about. Powerpoints are helpful.
Cons: For a 1000 level class, I expected a lighter workload, however his tests are the most random instances of questions that are very specific from the textbook. Powerpoints not posted on Scholar.
Even Dr. John know what he is talking about, doesn't mean the class knows. Most of the people in this class are just taking it for the Science credits and I think he's aware of that, but you do get a lot out of the class, even though useless information, it's information that you can spit out at a dinner party in the future to make you look smart.
Professor rated by: Political Science Student on December 7, 2011
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GEOS 1004
Physical Geology
5*****
not always available becuase he goes all over doing projects all over the world but hes a great teacher. really fair grades. read the book. he makes it optional but you wont pass without reading it before tests. He uses the book rarely but his tests are based on it so without it you're done. hes the best of the teachers ive had for my sciences. 3 tests. his quizzes are for attendance only. the grade doesnt count as long as you turn it in. no hw. some E.C. no curves
Professor rated by: Finance, Insurance, and Business Student on February 5, 2008
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
I hate geology, but Chermak makes the material relevant and interesting. He talks about his experiences, so it's a little more interesting. The Koofers and sample tests help a lot. The tests are kind of hard because of the answer bank. For example, he might give answer choices like: a,b,c, a&b, a&b, b&c, all, none. So, you need to know all exact answers. Come to class for points towards your grade. Sometimes he gives extra credit.
Professor rated by: Accounting & Information Systems Student on April 20, 2008
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
He takes attendance at least once a week and it counts so I'd recommend going to class for that reason and the fact he doesnt put his notes online and the class doesn't exactly follow the book either. He's a nice person overall and has great experiences to share.
Professor rated by: Finance, Insurance, and Business Student on May 2, 2007
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
Pros: The material is not that difficult to understand at all. He basically talks about global warming and energy resources the entire semester...it's not rocket science. Also, he posts a study guide on Koofers a few day before each exam with 45 of the 60 exam questions on it. To get the remaining 15 questions though, you really need to just listen and take notes during his lectures because he puts trivial facts on his exams that aren't considered a "main idea". And the 3 exams are not cumulative, so that's definitely a plus. Also, he's really nice as a person if you have an issue and you go to his office hours (don't email him, he rarely responds) and talk to him about it. You also usually get out after about 45 min-an hour.
Cons: You have to go to class to get the iClicker points (unless you opt for them not to count against you, but that grading method makes your tests count more). And his lectures aren't THAT boring, but you do have to pay attention if you want to get an A (or a high B) on the exam (unless you're just good at science). Also, he doesn't answer emails very promptly at all and he usually just tells you to come to his office hours to talk to him.
The homework quizzes can be taken as many times as needed and he takes your highest score. All answers are straight from the textbook though so if you don't buy the book you're gonna waste a LOT of time Googling the material. Not to mention half of the questions are statistics that Google won't have.



And for the exams, if you just pay attention during class and take some notes during the semester, you won't need more than an hour-an hour and a half to study for each exam. If you don't pay attention during class, then you can read the chapters, which are like 15-20 pages worth of text per chapter and usually 3-4 chapters on each exam, and not even that helpful. And you can go through the Powerpoints on Scholar and try to piece together what Chermak was talking about (he doesn't put NEARLY everything on the slides). And the exams are either 20% or 25% of your grade (it's weighed less if you choose for attendance to count toward your grade). Moral of the story? Just listen in class unless you're good with science!



Overall, if you have about 30-45 mins a week to do the quizzes, pay attention in class and take some notes, and have 1-1.5 hrs to devote for each exam, you can easily get an A. Easy B if you don't wanna pay attention and just wanna cram at the end.
Professor rated by: Interior Design Student on May 4, 2012
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
Pros: Textbook quizzes are incredibly easy

Attendance/quizzes can significantly help your grade

Little to no homework
Cons: Difficult-ish tests

Boring lectures
Chermak is generally an okay professor. He is very passionate about what he does and this shows through his lectures. The wording of his tests can be pretty tricky. You can spend a while studying and still do poorly. What he says in lecture and his PowerPoints don't really relate to the exam material. My advice for exams is to understand his practice exam and study old ones on Koofers. Essentially if you do poorly on the exams (which is common)....you can still get a decent grade in the class from the quizzes and attendance. When taking notes in class, write down all of the I-clicker questions and answers- they will appear on the exam. His lectures are incredibly boring, but it is college and will be something you will just have to put up with from time to time. The textbook quizzes are easy (just search for the questions online...the answers will come up). You can spend however long you want on them and take them up to three times and he will take the highest grade. So all in all, it is possible to do well in Resources Geology with Chermak...if you're just taking it to fill a CLE: take it. You'll survive, I promise...
Professor rated by: Marketing Student on November 29, 2014
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
1*
Pros: Uhhhhh not much to be honest

I guess attendance points which are easy to get
Cons: Takes his class way too seriously.

Boring lectures.

Comes off as pretentious.

To be completely honest, I really disliked taking resource geology with Chermak. His lectures were really boring and he took his class way too seriously. The amount of work this class required for a 1000 level course was kind of ridiculous. While the online chapter quizzes were easy, they were frequent. He also made us do a huge project where he paired us up with random kids in the class so if you got some slackers you were pretty much screwed. I thought this class would be somewhat easy, but it ended up consuming most of my time when I could have been focusing on my in-major classes. If you're into classes with a lot of interaction between students I guess this is the class for you because I was really just looking for an easy lecture class. This class reminded me a lot of high school. I hated high school.
Professor rated by: English Student on December 12, 2015
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
5*****
I loved Professor Chermak. I hate science, I am a business major, but of course everyone has to take a science course, and this is a good one to take. He is very understanding and wants everyone to do well - the tests are hard, but a lot of questions are identical to the practice quizzes he posts online, and he did offer extra credit. He also curves the exams, and gives a 'bonus question' at the end ("Pick True")



Overall, it is pretty hard to get an A, but not hard to get a B or B+.

Take notes, read the book, take practice quizzes. You don't have to go to class every time, but it helps to go often. He takes attendence once a week, but if it hurts your grade then he doesnt count it.



If you don't like science, this is your best bet.
Professor rated by: Finance, Insurance, and Business Student on December 13, 2007
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
3***
Pros: He is passionate about the environment.
Cons: He is pretty biased/doesn't teach!
Well...I didn't learn much about resources or the environment from his actual self; instead I just learned everything from the reading in the textbook. He's obsessed with group work and discussing issues among students--too bad we can't teach each other! He wonders why everyone fails his exams. Well the reasoning is because 20% of the material comes from the book while 80% comes from what we learn in class...which is nothing. He's a nice guy and obviously wants to promote environmental protection; however, I feel as if he would be better off oriented as a research professor.
Professor rated by: Student on March 10, 2012
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GEOS 1024
Resources Geology
4****
Pros: The quizzes are all online and open book. They are also not timed. He is passionate about what he teaches. If you miss no more than two of his classes; he will count attendance as twenty percent of your grade.
Cons: Some of the test questions are changed slightly from the quizzes. These are very easy to get wrong. You also will not get any tests back from him. In order to see what you missed you have to go to his office hours.
Overall, this professor is worth taking. The subjects covered in his class are very helpful to know for the future. If you give an earnest effort in his class, you will do fine.
Professor rated by: Architecture Student on January 23, 2013
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