Selected, Unedited, Anonymous Student Evaluations



Intro to Linguistics

(Brooklyn College, Fall 2018 & Spring 2019)
[Apart from the instructor, what are the strengths of the course?]

  • “It is a very interesting subject and can gain clarity in language as we view it.”
  • “The material is interesting and we got to learn about the origins of language.”
  • “the powerpoint slides”
  • “Very useful and interesting”
  • “Great introduction to the field of linguistics. I think its one of those things many people have misconceptions about. I have regularly heard some of the language myths debunked here bandied about in other courses. Very exciting to learn so much about the underlying mechanics as well as the social, political and psychological aspects of language.”
  • “It is interesting.”
  • “Very interesting, a perspective and an understandng of language use and history that most people never get to see”
  • “Well structured and materials. Great coverage of the variety of linguistics”
  • “goes over the linguistics curriculum.”
  • “I learned a lot about the way in which humans acquire language.”
  • “It is an interesting topic.”
  • “It’s very informative and it’s a good introduction to the subject. You don’t just learn about linguistics, but you learn about the how language and speech works in the world.”
  • “shedding light on why there are illogical rules in english and other languages”
  • “This lesson tells a lot about the language, and many things are misunderstood. This lesson gives the answer”
  • “useful survey of basic linguistic concepts”
  • “Very organized lessons”
  • “You gain more of an appreciation for language in general and the different dialects of your language.”
  • “The emphasis on cultural equity; that there is no logic in the belief in a hierarchy of language or dialect. This is a very liberating perspective that I wish was espoused more in general education. The course provides the tools necessary for metacognition of one’s own language system, something I found enthralling.”
  • “The material is interesting and the slides are well organized”
  • “This Linguistic class is very educative and I was able to learn new materials which dives deep into the core of language. I was able to learn some new things.”
  • “TThat it’s interactive and organized.”
  • “You will gain a lot of information on many different parts of language.”

[Apart from the course, what are the strengths of the instructor?]:

  • “Professor Graves is really kind and understanding, she grades really fair, and all of her slides and homework is available on blackboard.”
  • “She is kind and understanding and provides funny linguist llama memes in class.”
  • “teaching ability”
  • “Very organized and makes the lesson easier to understand than it is from the textbook”
  • “Clear, fun to listen to, always willing to explain over again, always available via email, organized.”
  • “Dr. Grave is amazing. Super passionate and energetic, her excitement about the subject matter is infectious. All of the materials are well organized. I especially appreciate thoughtful touches like the way that each class begins with a recap and agenda- its very nice way to orient and know what to expect. Dr. Graves is a true educator who clearly cares about her students success and contributing to the field of linguistics.”
  • “Professor Graves is very accessible and helpful outside of the classroom.”
  • “The instructor is consistent. She set expectations early and she kept us accountable and on task throughout the semester. She was fair with the class.”
  • “Always available, always answering questions”
  • “Extrovertness”
  • “Prof. Graves is incredibly organized and has a very fun style of lecturing. The classroom environment is very open and lighthearted — I found it very easy to engage with the concepts being taught.”
  • “prompt and a fair grader”
  • “She is passionate about the subject which is nice to see.”
  • “She is really a very good teacher. She cares for the students and takes care of the students. If you need help, she will be happy to help you. Ppt will be prepared during class. Post on the blackboard immediately after class. A lot of videos or other content she will make it easier for us to gain knowledge. Thanks her”
  • “She really knows hr stuff and makes you want to know it too. great sense of humor and passion and that really makes a difference.”
  • “The instructor is very organized and well informed. She’s really good at answering questions while also keep track of the time”
  • “The instructor seems to genuinely care about her students”
  • “Being organized, responsive and friendly.”
  • “Enthusiasm for the subject matter makes her lectures extremely engaging. She’s highly organized and has complete command of the classroom, actively encouraging discourse while discouraging unhelpful tangents. One of the better professors I’ve ever had, to be honest.”
  • “She was very knowledgeable.”
  • “The Professor is outstanding when it comes to sharing resources to make sure that each student can easily access information pertaining to the class. They are also great at communicating assignments, communication in general about what is expected of the student is wonderful!”
  • “Highly recommended; I didn’t even really know what linguistics was upon enrolling for this course, but now I find it a highly enlightening way of looking at culture and communication.”
  • “Very technical, still interesting”
  • “Great course and great professor.”
  • “This course exceeded my expectations. I thought the course would be focused on how different languages are spoken. It was a pleasure to learn how language is created and used and adopted amongst various cultures.”
  • “This course is awesome and Dr. Graves is an amazing instructor whose passion for linguistics is infectious. Slides and materials all very well organized. You will always have a clear idea of what to expect and what you need to do to succeed.”
  • “I enjoyed her teaching style.”
  • “She’s awesome and the course is great.”


Seminar in Linguistics: Corpus Analysis

(Brooklyn College, Spring 2019)
[Apart from the instructor, what are the strengths of the course?]:

  • “Introduction to using a corpus as a tool for linguistic study, helping to get Excel skills to an intermediate level, and very helpful tips & tricks on how to analyze large swathes of language data.”
  • “The course content is tailored toward each student’s particular linguistic interest. That is, the general framework of corpus research is the same, but each student had tge academic freedom to develop their own topic.”
  • “This course helped me strengthen my research abilities, obviosly. Other than that i learned about corpus studies which is something that I never used before.”
  • “While we often times read and analyze other research, this course allows students to conduct their own research and gain experience in writing about and presenting their work from start to finish.”

[Apart from the course, what are the strengths of the instructor?]:

  • “Professor Graves is incredibly time-conscious and helpful. She is very clear about her expectations of our research, gives reasonable deadlines for each step of the assignment, and provides an abundance of office hours and guidance.”
  • “The instructor is highly knowledgeable yet friendly and humble. She has a pleasant demeanor and genuiniely cares about a student?s success. She freely shares her knowledge and makes her time available to provide constructive feedback to individual assignment. Importantly, she understands individual student circumstances and displays great flexibility in working with them.”
  • “This professor is very helpful throughout all of the steps. I was torn as to what my topic was going to be researching and presented 2 topics and professor Graves was very honest with her feedback. She told me that they wre too broad and lack direction. She helped me find an appropriate topic for this class and guided me every step of the way. The coarse itself is not easy but Prefessor Graves made sure we were all well guided. She treated each student as if it was a one on one class and made sure that we all got the help we needed. She gives very honest and helpful feedback. Since we only met once a week she told us to come to her office hours and constantly emailed us in regards to our progress. She provided all the resources that she found helpful to us, and was very open about our recomendations for other sources. Other than this, she provided us with guidlines for even the basic things like APA formatting and presenting.”
  • “Very organized method of teaching, highly knowledgeable on the subject, very accessible via email, prompt with feedback & constructive criticism. This course was very demanding for me, but Prof. Graves was extremely helpful and patient in guiding me through. Favorite professor of the semester for sure.”



(Brooklyn college, Fall 2018)
[Apart from the instructor, what are the strengths of the course?]

  • “It holds interesting topics”
  • “Sociolinguistics is heavily relied on data, sources, and studies that strengthens independent study skills as well as language attitudes towards others.”
  • “This course helps you to explore many linguistic fields and open your curiosity to just dig into your inner self in order to find what makes language an amazing gift.”
  • “Great content !”
  • “I gained a totally different perspective on language from this course”
  • “The course had a lot of useful information”

[Apart from the course, what are the strengths of the instructor?]:

  • “Her knowledge of the subject and how passionate she is”
  • “She is always available for the questions and answers as the best of her ability.”
  • “She takes this course very seriously and makes the materials become relevant knowledge rather than details.”
  • “Assertive and fun personality.”
  • “The instructor taught us the information in an easy way”
  • “Very knowledgeable and sweet”

[General Comments]:

  • “Be prepared and ready to be challenged by a brilliant professor…Don’t worry she is open-minded and always willing to help.”
  • “The class is a very applicable course and with a professor that takes this course/major seriously, it really makes a positive difference and makes the course super interesting.”
  • “The course itself was fantastic. I learned so much about sociolinguistics and where the social meets, challenges, and reinforces the language. Especially great for future teachers, social workers, and other professions that will interact with a diverse mix of people.”
  • “Awesome reasearch experience that should be present in more BC Linguistics classes”
  • “The course is really interesting”



Intro to Linguistics 

Spring 2013:

  • “Prof. Graves is strict but the most inspiring professor I have taken in my academic career. She effortlessly puts together cohesive and easily understandable PPTs that allows us to absorb the material. She has given me direction and inspired me to go into her field. I find that she is a great role model for women and just an overall awesome educator.”
  • “Syelle Graves is an amazing professor. She’s patient, kind and very organized, rare traits not seen in other professors that I’ve had in the past.”
  • “Professor Graves is outstanding. She is very knowledgeable about her subject matter and is very willing to help. I enjoyed her class very much and feel that I learned a lot. She is very organized and it is contagious 😉 She is strict about cell phone usage and talking during class, but I think that is a good thing. She really wants you to focus and get the most out of her class.”
  • “A great professor! The material can be tough to understand at times, but she gives better examples in clarifying many of my questions.”
  • “Excellent teacher. Superb organization. Professor Graves teaches with passion and intills love for linguistics. She will remain an important part of my education.”
  • “Organized and a committed professor.”
  • “Great professor, she is very accurate in everything she says.”
  • “One of the best professor’s I’ve ever had. My interest in this field has increased greatly because of this class.”
  • “I would like to thank you very much for showing me a great side of linguistics. Your teaching has increased the interest in the subject for me and I appreciate your methods of making everything clear to your students. I look forward to taking more linguistics courses in the future and wish you a great summer! Best Regards, [initials removed]”
  • “one of my favorite classes! has increased my intrest in linguistics so much. loved your fun method of teaching and energetic lessons. thank you so much!”
  • “When I first picked this course, I wasn’t sure I was going to like it. I was barely interested in linguistics and for the most part I thought it was going to be a really boring class. Professor Graves made the class interesting. Her excitement over the subject she teaches definitely carries over into her lectures. She really made me much more interested in linguistics, and I’ll definitely be looking more into it after this class.”
  • “Professor Graves is incredibly organized and has really great teaching ethic. She increased my interest in linguistics because she herself was so passionate about the subject that it was reflected in the way she taught it. While it wasn’t an easy course, she certainly made it very enjoyable, and I learned a lot.”
  • “Love this professor. She helped me a lot.”
  • “Although I had to withdraw from her class, I definitely want to take it again with her as a professor.”
  • “she is a great professor.”
  • “Professor Graves is extremely clear and organized in the presentation of the material. I learned very much. Thanks.”

Fall 2012:

  • “You are a wonderful teacher. You have increased my interest in the subject. Best of luck!”
  • “I very much enjoyed this class! It has definitely increased my awareness about language and my interest in the subject. The Professor did a remarkable job in teaching the class.”
  • “I absolutely loved this course and actually feel a little sad that this semester is over! This was by far my favorite class and professor.”
  • “This class has been an absolute joy. Professor Graves is extremely organized, very accessible, and is excellent at explaining otherwise difficult concepts. I honestly wish more professors were like her. She’s also extremely personable and makes for an interesting class every session, which is an added bonus for an evening class. I’m glad I had the pleasure of being her student in my undergrad career.”
  • “I enjoyed and learned so much in this class. It was great having a professor who was SO organized and presented the material so clearly. She made sure we understood everything and always offered extra assistance to us. She always clearly told us what she expected from us which was great too because there were no surprises. Great teacher!”
  • “Professor Graves is by far the most efficient and organized instructor I have had. I appreciate all of the extra work she puts into her lessons and outside of the classroom. She makes sure that everyone is on the same page. If you miss a class, you are always caught up on the lesson and what is required for the following class. During her office hours, She helped me immensely in my future plan of study. She provided me with excellent advise and sat with me for a very long time, explaining many different avenues. I recommend to all my peers who have to take Eng 331 and Eng 332 to sign up for her class. Definitely a great experience!”

Summer 2012:
“Professor Graves was amazing. She had lots of patience in explaining difficult concepts and making herself available after or before class for any individual attention. Thank you!” 🙂

Spring 2012:

  • “She is one of the best (English) grammar professor that I ever had. She understands the needs or difficulties of bilingual students. She is very respectful and treats everyone fairly. Very knowledgeable on the English subject.”
  • “Professor Graves was wonderful. This is a highly technical course, at times, and she was able to explain abstract concepts with ease. My interest in linguistics has grown by leaps because of this course, and it is all due to Professor Graves.”
  • “I have decided to take this class in order to gain a better understanding of how English language works in general. It has exceeded my expectations both in the quality and content of lectures. Prof. Graves is one of the best organized and clear communicating teacher I have worked with. Highly recommended for all interested in language.”
  • “Her enthusiasm for the subject is infectious. Very well organized.”

Fall 2011:

  • “Delightful class, incredibly organized and interesting information. Her personal insight from the language research lab made the information valid and interesting. WONDERFUL!”
  • “Clearly defined lectures. Easy to follow. Learned more than I realized because Prof. explained topics well.”
  • “Excellent teacher. Loved her spirit and loved her energy. She made many difficult topics very simple, and fun to learn.”
  • “by far, Professor Graves has been the best professor, I’ve had. She makes time for her students and helps them in areas that they are struggling with. She is a fair teacher and I’ve enjoyed her class.”
  • “Great class!”
  • “Professor Syelle, I’m not sure whether you have the chance to see this, but I just want to let you know that you are the most outstanding professor ever I met in life so far. You are awesome. Thank you for all your teachings and advices. Good luck and all the best to you! :)”

Expository Writing

Fall 2011:
“Thank you for a great semester”

Spring 2011:

  • “Prof. Graves is an exceptional Teacher. She is always willing to help explain. She taught me to be a critical and opinionated person when reading and responding to a piece of work.”
  • “Prof Graves was amazing! She really cared about the students and took time for everyone.”
  • “Most amazing teachers I’ve ever had. Extremely organized, passionate for her students, intellectual and well-rounded in many topics discussed in class. Honestly one of the best teachers I’ve ever EVER had!”
  • “I think that Prof. Graves is an excellent professor and I have enjoyed the class and learned a lot.”
  • “Excellent teacher. Takes her time to give each student the individual attention he or she needs.”
  • “Excellent class. Helped me to understand critical writing.”

Fall 2010:

  • “I appreciated all the help I got from Professor Graves. In the end, I learned a lot in academic writing.”
  • “Syell was a great professor! Extremely helpful, I wish I could have her again.”
  • “Syelle is definitely one of the best English teachers I’ve ever had and has increased my confidence in my writing.”


English as a Second Language (Summer Advantage Program)

  • “thank you for judging Syelle Graves”
  • “many thanks.”
  • “She was a good ESL teacher for me. I was a lucky student who was teached by Syelle! I really appreciate your teaching.”
  • “Syelle is an amazing teacher! I would love to have her as my English teacher.”
  • “I love my Summer Advantage Program!”



Public Speaking

Fall 2015:

  • “Best class I’ve taken all semester. I was never bored. The Professor was always very lively.”
  • “so glad I have you to be my professor, I found out I really enjoy public speaking.”
  • “Upon starting the class in the beginning of the semester I felt very apprehensive to do public speaking. Today, being the end of the semester, I can say that I feel adequately comfortable in delivering a speech. Through this class, I learned a lot about the essentials of public speaking, researching and writing, important terminology and a lot about myself. I enjoyed this class very much and I am truly grateful for having the undivided attention and great communication from my professor. I am truly grateful! Thank you.”
  • “This course was one of the best I took. I loved the way I was taught and how resourceful, organized and effective my professor is.”
  • “A professor I’ll never forget. I enjoyed the class a lot.”
  • “I am glad that I am taking this class with the assigned instructor because she is an excellent professor. She knows how to help students with the respective assignments.”

Spring 2015:

  • “I really liked this course and enjoyed it as well. I learned a lot from it and have expanded my public speaking skills. The professor was very good and this course has motivated me to do better speaking in public overall. Also the professor was very helpful, understanding and respectful to all students.”
  • “Amazing teacher. She knows her stuff and has a good pace when reading slides. Knows how to give very good feedback on speeches and attempts to help the student by giving them advice/tips.”
  • “I enjoyed this class because I met some wonderful people. The professor taught me a lot. I did not expect to really take anything away from this class but, I took away a lot and I learned a few things about myself. My professor was never boring and kept the class on our A game.”


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