PLSC 111 Introduction to International Relations I cannot speak highly enough of David. I feel very lucky to have had him as a Teaching Fellow. He was extremely engaged with his students during section, prompting interesting discussion. He also went above and beyond his responsibilities, providing extensive feedback on projects to students who asked for it - it was easy to tell that he wanted his students to succeed in the class and gain a greater understanding of international relations.
AMAZING! Favorite Teaching Fellow I've had at Yale so far. Incorporated the content from lectures, the plethora of readings, and outside historical or current events in section. He didn't hog the conversations but really facilitated student learning and was available for office hours to help clarify anything from class, section, or the readings. Also overall very knowledgeable about the course content as well!
While I disliked the material covered in class, I do think Dave was an effective section instructor. I appreciated that he was always willing to read drafts of papers in advance and to discuss with us how to best read dense scholarly articles; that's a skill I'll take with me going forward. I think he made especially good use of group work and of the think-pair-share method that encouraged students who would normally remain quiet.
PLSC 113 Introduction to American Politics I really loved attending discussion section because of Dave. He did a great job of making class content more relevant to students while using a tone that made us feel more like equals rather than inferiors. If the discussion ever slowed down, he would always introduce a new, entertaining topic to reinvigorate conversation. He would make a really great professor in the future.
Strengths: Mr. Allison was honestly a breath of fresh air in the course. He was really witty and funny and made the course and section much more engaging. He also really helped me make deeper connections between concepts of the course that actually made me excited about political science. He was a lecturer once for our class and I think that was the most engaged I've ever been in lecture. Weaknesses: I wish he prompted more people to speak/engage during section.
The highlight of this course, in my experience, was having David as my TF. He led incredibly enjoyable sections, was always responsive to emails, and provided thoughtful insight on essays and assignments.
PLSC 128 Development Under Fire All strengths. Very responsive via email and incredibly helpful during office hours. Willing to puzzle through hard questions with you and section was very good. He challenged our pre-existing notions in a way that I think made my thought process much more rigorous. His first-hand experience is unbelievably helpful.
David was willing to discuss any question a student had. He made it clear that everyone's opinions were valued, but really made students think more deeply about their opinions and assumptions. David made students feel comfortable in section, and really added additional value to an already terrific course.
David was an awesome TF who really made it a priority that we all understood the theory and technical mechanics of the course topic. His office hours were very helpful, and he was very knowledgeable about a wide range of topics.
PLSC 143 International Challenges in the 21st Century Dave was easily one of my favorite TFs that I've had all of Yale, and I'm a junior that has had over a dozen TFs in numerous history and political science classes. I can't speak highly enough of him. He is brilliant, witty, and hilarious. His tremendous grasp on such a wide array topics is absolutely astounding. He repeatedly brought outside information into section that made the discussion richer and on a higher level. From the first week he brought a perfect balance of seriousness and humor into the classroom, and by the end of the semester the whole section had gotten rather close to and fond of him. Sections with Dave were one of my favorite parts of my week, and I always looked forward to them. Dave also frequently challenged me in section when I answered a question, forcing me to think on my feet. This was definitely difficult at the moment, but looking back, I appreciate it immensely, as I developed a skill that had room for improvement. His feedback on my short writing assignments was also very helpful. Again, I can't speak highly enough of Dave, and highly recommend him to whoever is reading this.
David was a very good TF. He took the class very seriously, which is something that I wasn't fully expecting coming into it, and I initially thought that this would work against him, but his strong knowledge of the subjects and great preparedness for facilitating good, productive conversation in section helped me to learn a great deal from this class. Overall, I think that David was tough but completely fair, and he made me work harder than I might've in this class, which I now appreciate.
David was probably the best TA that I've had at Yale. He did lots of useful exercises and presented insightful background to the subject matter. This was one of the first sections that I've taken that actually added something to my experience in the course.
Average Instructor Rating 4.4/5. Full course evaluations available on request.