We Test Drive PennCourseReviewED.com
November 6, 2008 at 11:00 am
Everybody knows the best way to keep abreast of what's new at Penn is to look down. That way, you can kill two birds with one stone by avoiding eye contact with flyer-wielding classmates AND simultaneously checking out the chalkings. Which is to say, we noticed, or more accurately, stepped on, the URL "PennCourseReviewED.com" enough times over the past few days that it piqued our curiosity. So we checked it out. A UTB appraisal:
- Straight off the bat, we were annoyed we had to register and make up a screenname. Our lives are complicated enough.
- Aside from a rather spirited debate on the merits of Introduction to Cognitive Science (who knew?), the site is looking pretty empty. It relies on user-submitted reviews, but no one's going to start writing reviews until the site gets popular, and blah blah blah vicious circle.
- Which brings us to another point: we already have Penn Course Review, and we read last week that that shit is going online-only, making this site totally redundent as of next semester, which we don't actually feel that bad about, since the site grew out of a class project and doesn't seem to have any kind of agenda. (But they could have named it whatever they wanted to differentiate it from PCR, and all they came up with was adding -ED? Really?)
- The site is also not very intuitively designed--the majority of courses don't have reviews, but every class offered at Penn seems to be listed, and there's no way to limit searches to only courses that have reviews.
- Bottom Line: An imperfect tool for selecting classes, but thanks for trying, guys!