Kate Ho

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

Jan 2018

Prof. Ho is a great lecturer and very approachable, who posts lecture notes before classes and stays after lectures if you have questions. Like general econ-classes, models are simplified but explained very clearly; and they are generally quite applicable in interviews like M&A models. That being said, it is indeed very model-based and thus involves some level of math (in my opinion not as math-intensive as people warned here, more like 1-st order condition and taking partial derivatives). Additional to solving models, she does ask intuition questions to test students' true understanding, so be prepared for that. People usually do quite well in this class (or maybe just my own experience, an overall 91+ only lands me in a B+ range). Therefore, if you are considering this class, be mindful of the curve and don't screw up any midterm or homework b/c you may not get a chance to make it up at all (again, perhaps it's only me). In all, I enjoyed this class despite the curving down situation. And I highly recommend Prof. Ho and this lecture.

Oct 2016

Absolute Garb Professor

Feb 2015

She was one of the first professors I had for an upper-lever econ elective, and she was absolutely amazing. She was very clear in explaining the model, and posted all of her notes online before the lecture. The TA's were very thorough in going over the Game Theory and competition models that weren't covered as heavily in class. The problem sets were challenging, but the lecture notes and Office Hours made them more than doable, and she allows for collaboration with other students. The material for the semester was great, and covered a range of topics from competition in different market scenarios, advertising, and other theories that are relevant for many different industries. If you're going to take Industrial Organization, take it with Prof. Ho. CAUTION: This is a math-intensive course.

May 2014

Professor Ho was fantastic. While the material was a bit dull at times, the lectures were exceedingly clear. She seemed very intimidating at first (she very sternly emphasizes not to text in her class), but she is actually a very lovely, nice person. 95% of what shows up in the six problem sets is on the lecture notes already/ only requires you to extend the model she's given you a bit, but it's all very clear and very straight-forward. The midterm and the final were also not too difficult; as long as you studied her lecture notes well, you're guaranteed to do really well. This semester, the median (average? I forget which) on the midterm was a 27 of 30, so people did really, really well. She then said she'd make the final harder, and it was marginally so, though not too horrible either. She said though that she was okay with giving out a higher percentage of A grades since we did well, so she's really very nice and not too concerned with being that tough Econ professor that likes failing everybody. She said on the first day of class that she used to curve to a B, but as she's taught the class more she's become "nicer" so she said it's likely she'll curve more towards a B+. She's very flexible, caring, and clear. She makes sure we understand the material, and I've found I/O to be one of the more useful topics in Economics, and while the material was dull at times, I personally found the models, their results and their intuitions (which at the end of the day were quite common-sensical) to be really interesting. All in all, 10/10 would definitely recommend this class and professor Ho. If you're interested in management consulting or in having a much, much more solid understanding of the firm part of microeconomics, this is definitely the class to take. Topics covered: - Firms - Perfect Competition (with Competitive Selection) - Monopoly (base case, natural monopoly, durable goods, price discrimination, bundling and tying) - Oligopoly (Cournot, Stackelberg, Bertrand, Collusion, market power, other variations on these models) (The Oligopoly section was the foundation for the rest of the class) - Product Differentiation - Information (Adverse Selection, Market for Lemons) - Advertising - Entry - Network Effects - Vertical Relations - Research and Development, Patents - Anti-trust

Nov 2012

Professor Ho is very smart and engaged and approachable, and IO is a really interesting course if you enjoyed micro and/or game theory, or are interested in mgmt consulting. Unfortunately, the overall course has proven to be rather dull - droning lectures and periodic problem sets with no support from a textbook. I'm a bit jaded about how econ lectures go, so this isn't bad relative to others, but it was not as rewarding as it could have been. She'll curve to a strict B, so hope that you do well on the exams. Take advantage of office hours because Professor Ho really is bright and friendly.

Jan 2010

The best econ professor I've had. I was interested in the material to begin with but Ho's lectures made this a great experience for me. Her lectures are clear and no nonsense but she spends plenty of time connecting the theory to the real world. She's also very approachable if you're interested in the material and not just trying to suck up. This is somewhat harder than most econ electives but it's a must if you like microecon and aren't afraid of a little more math than usual. A lot of the course consists of applications of game theory, so it would be easier if you've already taken game theory but it's not necessary (I did fine without it). The textbook is useful at points, but the key to doing well is to read the lectures notes before and after class and do all the HW. As for grading, the midterm and final both had their tricks but were fair as long as you had been going to class and doing your HW.

Dec 2007

Fantastic! Both the class and the professor are superbly organized and interesting. The material is definitely challenging, yet attainable for economics students. The material connected microeconomics to the real world for me. The text book was almost useless for me (others like it, I found it difficult to read), but it is unnecessary if you go to class and study the lecture notes.

May 2006

This was a challenging class, but one you can tackle. You were able to print out all the lecture slides that she had posted in courseworks. As a class we didn't do well on the midterm, but I think we did better on the final. The tests were problem sets. I strongly advise that you read Shy (recommended book) and only read the required text for background information. And definitely go over all homework and problem examples in the lecture notes. If you can master those, then you should do well on the exams. Also I strongly urge you to go to recitation because the TA will cover certain areas in more detail. Rely heavily on lecture notes and problem sets. And don't forget Shy. Good luck.

May 2006

Great lecturer and helpful with explaining the tougher concepts. IO generally is a tough subject compared to the other Econ electives, but she teaches it well and helps you prepare for the exam with a lot of practice exam questions. If you like Micro theory, then take this class and if you want to do grad school in Econ then definitely take this class because you'll need it.