Michael Marsh

13 reviews
Average rating: 1.92




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CMSC417

Expecting an A-
Anonymous 06/03/2019
Based on past reviews, I was extremely weary to take Marsh for this class, but after going through it I’m glad I did. He has improved a ton and takes constructive criticism in stride to actually improve the class (the only cs prof I’ve seen do this). Many complain his test scripts are still broken, but these were due to tests that are more in depth than other courses, which I believe is a great thing. You can also tell he loves the subject. His lectures can be a little tough to follow at times as his examples aren’t always the clearest, but he is willing to reexplain anything that may have been ambiguous. Overall, the most useful class I’ve taken at UMD and no regrets on Marsh.
CMSC417

Expecting an A-
Anonymous 05/16/2019
Overall Professor Marsh was a much better professor than I think most of these reviews suggest. He has made changes based on what I hear on here. He no longer does take home exams which seemed to have been a major issue in past semesters based on past reviews and reddit threads. He is well prepared for lectures, and genuinely seems to care about students' success. He offers a survey active all semester for students to voice their opinions of the course, and he even sent individual messages to the students who did really well on each exam congratulating them on their success which was a nice way to show he actually cares about students doing well, which is really rare among professors here in my opinion. His grading scripts can be frustrating and his lack of public tests is something that I think could be improved, but overall he is not a bad professor. Class is pretty hard, but you learn a lot about how the internet works which is pretty cool.
CMSC417

Expecting an A
Anonymous 03/16/2019
Marsh for 417 was great. He took a systems approach to the whole class which I really liked. If you didn't like 216 then you'll have a rough time, but projects are easy as long as you can read manpages and use Wireshark. It's impossible to fail his class if you submit even a half-assed attempt on all the projects. All exams including the final were take-home. If you don't get an A in the class it's on you
CMSC414

Anonymous 11/20/2018
Project grades are always off by at least 20% because he trusts his "scripts". Exams are tough, hard to study for. And everything else is as other reviews described. Terrible professor.
CMSC417

Anonymous 10/14/2018
Such a terrible teacher for 417. Exams and projects are so vaguely worded. You need to make several assumptions on exam questions, but if your implementation doesn't match his you get a 0. When we asked for clarifications, he would sometimes give us misleading answers. He never gave us sample input/output even though we asked before every project and exam. Half way through the semester he just gave up on doing slides. Grading felt like it was arbitrary, but he told us not to worry about it because he promised a substantial curve. He ended up setting 39 as the cutoff for a C-, but an 85 was still a B, so he might as well have not curved. He also gives out minuses but not pluses.
CMSC414

Expecting an F
Anonymous 08/30/2018
I agree with everyone else
CMSC414

Expecting a B
Anonymous 06/11/2018
Worst computer science professor I've ever had at UMD. He puts this university to shame, and the worst part is - he's a pretty nice guy (it's so frustrating). - lectures are downright impossible to follow - he gives high-level explanations and then tests on low-level code implementation - his take home exams require the use of libraries/tools that have bad documentation - his take home exams are heavily biased towards students who have already taken cmsc417/cmsc456 - warning: if he gives take homes, prepare to devote 20-30 hours of work to it and watch the average be a 40-60% - his grading scripts are terrible and you always need regrades - he uses elms discussion boards instead of piazza - he's stubborn, unhelpful, and oblivious in general My advice? Avoid this class at all costs, and don't take any class with this professor. Not worth your time.
CMSC414

Expecting an A-
Anonymous 05/21/2018
Nice guy. Worst professor I've ever had. I could go into all the reasons, but frankly it would just be exhausting, so I'll just say this: >He is bad at communicating >His project descriptions are borderline unfollowable >He only holds one office hour a week that is shared between 417 and 414 >His test grades are almost always wrong and you have to ask him for points back every time >His grading is completely opaque unless you bug him for his inputs >He forces you to use elms discussion boards and does not respond to any student questions posted to elms >His lectures do not cover exam topics, they just give general, high level explanations of things >He does not understand the math behind cryptography but tries to teach it anyway >If you take him, you will learn everything on your own DURING the test >He gives assignments that take much longer to complete than he says they will (his catch phrase is "30 minutes of coding per problem") The list goes on... If you take him, prepare to be paying for nothing I wasn't gonna list everything, but I did anyway. Woops. There you go. Avoid at all costs.
CMSC414

Anonymous 05/21/2018
Wish i could give a zero rating for his Excellenc in organizing lectures and his remarkable project readmes
CMSC414

Anonymous 04/17/2018
worst class ever. Don't even know what I should get
CMSC417

Anonymous 04/12/2018
Honestly, one of the most unorganized classes I've ever taken. Avoid this professor at all costs. The first project took nearly 2 months to get back to us, and over half of the students got zeroes due to shoddy testing code. Every assignment we've had so far has had to be regraded. This morning, the day AFTER the drop deadline, he announces the next midterm and final exam will be in class rather than take-home. Completely unprofessional.
CMSC414

Anonymous 04/04/2018
He is the worst professor. Just reads off the slides and gives like 4 15 minutes excercises in class. Doesn’t give answers to these exercises. He forced everyone to use elms discussion instead of piazza. Exams are extremely hard avergae was 52 for our first midterm. He doesn’t have time for his students. 1 hour of office hours per week and that too for 414 and 417 combined.i am not sure what grade i have in this class. Extremely unorganized professor. Biggest mistake of my life to take 414 with him.
CMSC417

Expecting a W
cnaka 03/30/2018
His lectures are mediocre, but the real problem is how he tests code. He puts our arbitrary project specs without public/release tests and then tests them in a very specific way, causing many students to get zeros for things such as putting a space in the wrong place in the output. He said he would fix this, but I still have no idea what grade I have in this class.