[GEOL 0161]
Elements of Oceanography

Rate This Class

Professor: Manley, P.

Value of Course / Overall Score

Not Much (8.3%
Average (25%)
Valuable (66.7%)


Friendly (16.7%)
Average (33.3%)
Competitive (50%)

Class Atmosphere

Boring (66.7%)
Average (33.3%)
Fascinating (0%)

Prep Time Needed

1-2hr (8.3%)
3-5hr (50%)
6-8hr (33.3%)
9-11hr (8.3%)
12+ hr (0%)

Grade Weighting

Harder (0%)
Average (16.7%)
Easier (83.3%)

Adequate Assistance

Yes (100%)
No (0%)

Would Recommend Class

Yes (66.7%)
No (33.3%)

Evaluation Comments for Manley, P.

  1. If you are thinking about majoring in a humanities discipline and plan on taking this class to knock out your SCI/DED distribution... DO NOT!!! Take Rocks for Jocks or a logic class. Tom was a very nice guy (had some very interesting stories to tell and very friendly in general) and the boat rides were memorable, but the material was incredibly boring (unless subjects like sub-bottom morphology, deep-water bottom currents, and wave dynamics sound interesting to you) and the class took up way too much time. We had to work on our lab for multiple hours a week and towards finals week it got very intense. We also had to prepare a long powerpoint presentation, which was stressful and not something I wanted to have to worry about during finals week. Not a particularly difficult class (Not much hw and I got higher grades on the exams than I deserved) and probably a better choice than Calc, but nonetheless very time-consuming and imo not worth taking unless you care about geology.
  2. Definitely take this class if you're trying to get a science distribution credit or just want a fun class. It's very possible to pair it with another lab class, but I wouldn't recommend it unless the other class is easy too. The material is all pretty easy to grasp and there's rarely homework, but you have to spend a lot of time just meeting with your lab group to make decisions and divide up what little work there is to do. Always show up to class because attendance is a part of your grade. Don't buy the book unless you're really interested in studying oceanography though. He assigns a couple of readings from it (that aren't on the quizzes or tests) and thats it. The most important thing to do is to get to know Tom because he's an awesome guy and he's super nice, and definitely don't miss strawberry shortcake.
  3. Relatively interesting class. Great intro class for those looking to do more in the geology department. I only took the class because I couldn't get in to any Enviro classes, so it wasn't right up my alley, but Tom's personality and sense of humor make the lectures something to look forward to. Going out on the boat once a week is somewhat of a hassle, especially if you're an athlete and have to get back for practice. There's no guarantee you'll get back on time. Plus, due to the time it takes to get out to Champlain, the lab is an hour longer than other labs. Annoying that there's an exam right before the presentations at the end of the semester. Also, the presentation is just annoying in general, though somewhat rewarding after the fact.
  4. Tom is awesome. I would highly highly recommend taking a class with him at some point while at midd. he is so dedicated to his students and to the subject. Especially near the end of the semester when students are putting together group presentation, Tom was incredibly helpful and he went through great lengths to make sure we had adequate data to make our presentations and learn the most we possibly could. The class does have a lot of work, but in the end Tom is very reasonable with grades. The large amount of work really is so that we learn the most possible, not just so he has grades to judge us by and I think that this is very different from many other science professors I have had at middlebury. The class work is fairly back heavy, with a group presentation at the end of the semester. However, in his grading reflects a recognition of that. Not to mention the lab period is out on a boat in Lake Champlain during the VT fall.... For anyone who likes boating or water activities, this class would be great to take. To sum up, Tom is great, and the class is interesting. Id highly recommend it.
  5. Not much work outside class in the beginning. But later on there is a HUGE ppt presentation that you spend HOURS on. Labs are AWESOME!! Lectures can sometimes get a little old, but a ppt handout is given each lecture so you can follow along and take notes, quite nice! Finals are ok. Great class, shouldn't miss it in your midd experience!
  6. I enjoyed the class, but there is A LOT of out of class work.
  7. First: Tom Manley is a G. Friendliest dude you're ever gonna meet. I'd give his lectures a B. The best thing about this course was the labs. You'll go out on Lake Champlain every week, and conduct original research. Then you'll present it as a powerpoint at the end of the semester. Expect to spend time/bond with your lab group. If you don't like your lab group, you may be in trouble, but if you do it's sweet, and the final presentation isn't so bad. Other than that there is not much daily hw, and the actual topic is fairly interesting. Plus you get to go to Manley's house to eat strawberry shortcake and ride his ATV. Take this course.
  8. This class was amazing because it provided access to research that is very unique. Lab sections on Lake Champlain were very useful and a lot of fun.
  9. Tom Manley is a fun professor, and is always available and happy to help. The labs, as mentioned earlier, are a bit long, and do require effort, but most take place out on the boat, making the lab less stressful than most others. I recommend this course to anyone who has an interest in science.
  10. Unless you'r'e interested in Oceanography, I would not take this class. If you need to fill a requirement, find something else. In addition to the four hours of class time, there's a four hour lab once a week and at least four extra hours a week preparing for your final presentation, homework not included. Essentially, the course is bottom topgrahy, wave creation, and atmosphere creation. It's in depth, a lot of work, and not particularly interesting. Prof. Manley on the other hand, is a wonderful professor who brings the material to life and is passionate about his work. He knows what he's talking about, and if you're intersted the topics of oceanography, then he's a wonderful person to learn from.
  11. Tom Manley is an incredible man.
  12. This course is fun and it is not that hard. The labs are long, but they are fun because you get to go out on lake champlain and play with all of the boats expensive equipment. I recommend this course to any "outdoorsy" type of person. There is a small homework each week, and the labs are essential. The midterm is hard, and the final is not bad

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