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Teacher Grade: A

Difficulty Grade: 2/10

POLS 341

Grade Received: A

posted 2019

Professor Settle's lectures can be a little dry and seem like they're not going anywhere but it is relatively easy to get an A if you study the powerpoints, try to engage yourself during class because a lot of the things he says in class are often on the exams. Going to an occasional office hour is also really helpful because he'll often explain things at length and lead you towards answers that will be on the exam. Although, you do have to cram for midterms, and the final exam but they are all very straightforward and easy if you study off the study guide. The in class presentations are also very informal and simple as he just wants to make sure that you understand the case / are able to explain it. Professor Settle also tries very hard to crack jokes and create a fun learning environment but the material is usually dry so its up to you what you want to take out of the class.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: C

posted 2017

Do not take this class as a GE. It is not an easy A or even an easy B. Settle, the one-time mayor of SLO, is a very smart and well-informed teacher and his lectures are somewhat interesting but have little to do with what he tests on. There are 2 midterms, a final, and a 12 page policy paper (none of which is cumulative which is nice). Settle gives out a study guide usually a week or a few days before the test. Memorize everything on it (although he'll never mentioned the stuff in class) and you will get a B on the tests. There are at least 5 questions on the test that make no sense and 5 you just don't know because they aren't on the study guide. That will leave you with a low B, or a high C with you slip up on any other questions. Don't buy the books and write a paper from the point of view of Pro. Settle (very liberal) even if you disagree with what your writing. Your better off with any other POLs 112 teacher.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: B

posted 2017

"Tough Decisions In Making Public Policy (It's like making sausage)" -A Slide from POLS 112 with Dr. SettleIf you have chosen to take (or have been blocked into) POLS 112 with Dr. Alan Settle, be prepared for the most confusing turmoil of wildly fallacious lectures you will ever attend. This class is incredibly disorganized and the expectations are unclear. Every class period you will receive two full hours of non-sequitur lecture and outdated documentary footage. STAY FOR THE DOCUMENTARIES because there will be questions on the tests concerning them. Most people leave the class after the first half hour or hour, but I stayed for all the lectures and worked on making my study guide/working on the term paper. The class consists of three 50 question multiple choice tests (2 midterms each weighted 20% and the final weighted 30%) and one 10 page term paper (also 30%) Sounds easy enough? Well the questions on the tests do not make grammatical sense and there will be approximately 7 questions that have nothing to do with anything from the book, lectures, movies, study guide, etc. Study for an A but don't be upset if those random questions bring you down to a B. He gives study guides for the three multiple choice tests but they are not very helpful because his definitions of concepts will confuse you more than help you... use the study guides but, look up all the terms online. On the lecture before each test he will allow the class the ask questions about the study guide. Asking questions helps but it may take him 20 minutes and 3 different unrelated tangents to get to the answer you are looking for. Settle is a VERY nice man. He is passionate about current events and has profound knowledge on the inter-workings of government and economy. But I advise you not to take him because you won't really learn anything about government in this class. If you are blocked in... retype the study guides and attend class and use it as study time even if it seems pointless to show up. DO NOT BUY THE BOOK-- I have read the assigned readings all quarter and not once have they showed up on the tests. With that, I still don't know why making public policy is like making sausage. :(

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: A

posted 2017

POSITIVES: Professor Settle is a nice guy. He is quite enthusiastic about the material he presents and provides an extensive amount of information on many topics related to the government, current policy issues, and historical events which shaped America.NEGATIVES: Professor Settle just does not know how to teach. His lectures include incessant rambling about Trump, and who knows what else, and then he plays a documentary video which goes in-depth on the topics he should be covering. It is safe to say that class time provides no useful information that can be used in the tests. He issues three to five powerpoints each unit with anywhere from 150 to 350 slides packed with useless information that is repeated multiple times, although there are a few morsels of information that will be on the test. Test day, you realize that eighty percent of the questions he never went over and are worded in such a way as to become ambiguous. So what can you do to get an A with all these odds stacked against you?HOW TO GET THE A: There are a few thing you can do to earn an A in this ridiculous course. Try to do your absolute best in the ten-page essay. Start it weeks in advance, get help from the writing center, and thoroughly research your topic. Go to class and pay attention to the videos that are played. Several of the test questions will relate to ideas discussed in the films, and if you did not show up to get this information, you would not be able to answer the corresponding questions on the test. Also, Professor Settle distributes a study guide with all sorts of terms and ideas that may or may not show up on the test. Memorize the study guide and look up additional information on Wikipedia and so forth, so you have a more thorough understanding of the material. As stated previously, many of the test questions are ambiguous and leave you feeling defeated. Don't be; You have one last secret weapon to put you in the A or high B range! This is key: on each question, you just do not know the answer to, circle the answer you think is correct and cross off the answers you think are wrong. Then wait for the rest of the students to turn in their test (These people are getting C's and D's anyway). Then talk to Professor Settle and ask him to explain the questions and answers. He will tell you if the item you circled is correct and if you press him a bit more, he will hint at what the right answer is. Try to be amicable and curious so as not to raise suspicion that you are taking advantage of him, but otherwise ask him as many questions as you want, and that is about it.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: B

posted 2017

Settle is honestly a great guy and enjoys his job a lot. His lectures are interesting, if you want to actually know what is going on in government or in the world, but they were not particularly helpful for the exams. He has two midterms, and a final exam. The final in non-cumulative, which is a life-saver in this class. He gives you a study guide for each midterm and final, that has almost everything you need to know. The study guides are about 4 pages long of stuff you need to know, so it is definitely a lot to remember. If you take the time to do study the study guide you should get at least a B or B- on the exams. He also has a 10-12 page term paper due on the last lecture, which is not difficult at all. I recommend doing the paper as early as you can, because if you wait, it is gonna be a stressful dead week for you.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: B

posted 2016

Settle knows probably more than you ever want to hear about politics and affairs. If you're taking this class for a GE, I highly recommend it because you could never show up to class except for the tests and to get a study guide and be fine. He claimed that attendance was mandatory and took roll but I don't think it was actually ever inputted. Be prepared to learn nothing from the class and everything from the study guide.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: B

posted 2016

I was blocked into this class as a 6-8 my first quarter at Cal Poly, and let me just say it was possibly the hardest I have ever had to struggle not to sleep in a class in my life. Settle is a politician not a professor, his lectures sound like when you watch politicians debate and they seem like they are saying a lot of smart things but are really not saying anything at all. Half the time i did not know what we were supposed to be learning about, and the way he lectured was so confusing I could not even take notes. He often went on tangents and ended up completely off topic, and even told us information I know to be false. then the tests had things on which were never even mentioned in class. Settle is a nice guy, and he does try, and is passionate, I could just never tell what he was talking about, which made it very hard for me to do well in a class that should not be hard. I would definitely take any other class, this one was awful.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: B

posted 2016

I had the pleasure of taking Allen Settle's POLS 112 lecture in Winter Quarter 2016, and I thoroughly enjoyed the class. The class consisted of 2-hour lectures twice a week. The first hour of lecture was usually Settle talking about either current political events (such as reactions to presidential debates or world events such as the death of SCJ Scalia) or going through the powerpoint lecture slides (which were all available on his PolyLearn page). The second hour of the class would almost always be a video on the current lecture material; while most found these to be boring and not worth their time (as they would leave), I found the videos informative despite me being an engineer and not PoliSci. No homework, there's 2 midterms and a final, in addition to a final paper that you have all quarter to work on (Roughly 8-12 pages, double-spaced). Study guides were always provided before each exam: although they were only on the terms and sometimes lacked lecture/video material, it was easy to memorize the study guide and pull off a consistent 85% on every exam. My only qualm is that I never found out what I got on either my final or my final paper, but got a B+ in the end. I recommend Allen Settle, he's a stand-up guy and knows what he's talking about, considering he's a former mayor and councilperson for San Luis Obispo.

polyratings post

POLS 112

Grade Received: C

posted 2016

Settle has a good heart, don't get me wrong. But his teaching abilities are down the toilet. Going into class is practically pointless, considering he just rambles on the whole time about random things you do not need to know for the exams. There are two midterms, a final, and a 10-12 page term paper. Tests are pretty difficult, but I would recommend definitely doing the study guides, at the least. If you go into his office hours, be prepared to stay for at least an hour, as he tries to answer your question but ends up just ranting on about random things. My best advice for the term paper is to NOT PUT IT OFF UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE or else you will be very stressed out the week before, like I was. If you have the choice to take another professor, I would, but if not, it is not the end of the world.

polyratings post

POLS 341

Grade Received: unknown

posted 2017

Grade N/A as I didn't want my final grade to influence my evaluation.This was the worst class I have taken in the POLS department. Professor Settle spends half of the class ranting about things that have no pertinence or telling stories about when he was mayor of SLO. The other half is spent skipping through material that he doesn't think we need to cover but will be on the midterm/final. There is a midterm, final, case brief presentation, and case brief analysis paper which is due at the end of the quarter. The case brief was one case from the text that you have to write a brief on and present in class. The paper was 5 case briefs along with an intro and conclusion. Neither of these were that difficult. The midterm was alright. If you study the study guide you will do alright, but there were various things on there that we had never discussed or seen before. I haven't taken the final yet, but I imagine it will be roughly the same. Professor Settle spends a lot of his time in class redefining basic constitutional law terms into his own preferred definition, often calling out students for being wrong when they are reading the definition from the book.