WIJNIE SHOULD BE A GOLD NUGGET. SERIOUSLY. Hands down the BEST professor I have had at Columbia. She is a great professor who genuinely wants her students to learn Dutch and gain an understanding of Dutch culture. If you aren't particularly strong at languages, this is the class for you. Only meets twice a week too which is nice.
Wijnie is amazing. I only took one semester with her (because I didn't care for my classmates and, in a course like Dutch in the US, your current class is who'll have until I2) but it was a fantastic time. She's incredibly down to earth, even helping students find free textbooks because she didn't know they were so expensive! She's from The Netherlands and knows all about the culture and the language. I highly recommend her to anyone interested in actually learning this under appreciated language. Equally, if you're looking for a relatively easy way out of the language requirement, she's the way to go. Homework isn't really graded, there were no real projects, and she's very gentle when it comes to forcing in class speaking.
Should be a gold nugget. Seriously. She goes out of her way to help clarify things for students, and is patient with everyone. She handcrafts all of the lessons and all of the classes, so they are really interactive and fun for students. It's a great hands-on approach to Dutch. By the time you're in Intermediate, she'll be able to speak Dutch to you at all times, and you'll understand pretty much most of what she is saying. She covers reading & writing (HW assignments), listening (watching clips of news stories, etc.) and speaking (lots of discussions). If you have even the remotest interest in Dutch, you should take this class. This is exactly the kind of class that gets you the hands-on education you signed up for when you enrolled in Columbia.
Wijnie is a very nice lady, her class is the moment you look forward to during the week: she makes you laugh, learn fun things in dutch and listens to you. I have taken elementary dutch (I&II) and intermediate (I&II), although I don't feel like I am fluent - I can for sure read and get the general meaning of what I am reading. In Intermediate Ducth we read a book and poems and learnt about Dutch history. If you have any connection to Dutch or just a genuine interest for the language and the Low countries, join the class !
This class is amazing. Wijnie is truly an incredible professor. She is very laid back and creates a comfortable classroom environment. You do a lot of group activities to encourage speaking Dutch. These are really fun and everybody embarrasses themselves to the point where you are all comfortable with one another and aren't afraid to make mistakes. She's a very approachable understanding professor and really just a generally down to earth person. This is the kind of class you'll look forward to going to. You'll learn a ton and never be stressed about work. Wish all professors were like Wijnie.
Wijnie de Groot is one of Columbiaâ€™s hidden gems. She is an absolutely fantastic language teacher because she goes above and beyond the call of duty in order to give her students the best possible experience. Her carefully crafted lessons go beyond the Dutch language and touch on Dutch culture and literature. After leaving her class, I feel as though I have a solid grounding in all aspects of Dutch life. Wijnie is the entirety of Columbiaâ€™s Dutch department. Her lessons are all self-made, which means she is able to customize her classes based upon her students' interests. She works extremely hard to ensure that each of her students stays interested in engaged with her material. This keeps her classes fresh and interesting, as they are constantly updated and revamped. If anything interesting happens in the Netherlands, she'll come to class armed with news clips and articles. She organizes a number of activities outside of class hours, like Dutch dinners or theatre. She also takes a deep interest in her students, acting as both a friend and a mentor. By the time class ends, youâ€™ll have learnt more Dutch than you ever thought possible. I cannot recommend her highly enough. If you have any interest in the Dutch language â€” any at all â€” I'm sure that there is no better teacher than Wijnie in all of New York.
Wijnie is awesome, the class is easy and fun but you still learn a lot if you put in any effort at all. Probably an ideal course for someone who sucks at languages but is interested in learning...
Wijne! What an awesome person, teacher, mentor. She truly cares about her students and it shows. The Dutch program (although a tiny) is thriving. Her students come back semester after semester, and mostly because she is such a joy in and out of the classroom. It is true that her classes can wander and we don't cover everything she sets out to do. She is also a fairly generous grader. But, we learn a lot in discussions about current issues and often go on "field trips" to see plays in Dutch, hear speakers, cook Dutch food, see Dutch movies. She is one of my favorite people at Columbia! Take this class if you have even the slightest interest in learning Dutch.
Ow! The secret to this course, before you take it, is that 90 to 100% of the people that take it already know Dutch to some degree (like, they've been speaking it at home for ten years but can't spell so great). So if you know nothing, you're going to get brutalized. And there isn't a lower-level course. That said, I do like Professor de Groot and can't blame her for the way the class works, since she's just working with what they give her. The class is extremely structured and straightforward with a good approach to the material -- you come out knowing a bit more than you usually would in one semester of a language course. She's flexible with assignments and deadlines, and generally easy to get along with, and the class never gets too intense. Grading is pretty forgiving.
Dutch is a language with unique ties to English. If you have ever had the opportunity to live in or travel extensively to Belgium, the Netherlands, or even Indonesia or Suriname, you will appreciate this course. It will certainly benefit the art student of the Old Masters, as her course draws students from the New School and N.Y.U. Art Departments too. Wijnie de Groot is a talented professor who utilizes subtle techniques in teaching her course. I have followed through with Wijnie from Dutch I through Dutch III over the past three years, and she has set out a relaxed learning environment which allows students to appreciate Dutch culture, history and interaction with other cultures as well such as the Muslims in the Netherlands. De Groot's classes are enjoyable. When the clock ticks onto the minute class is scheduled to begin, Wijnie holds the class entirely in Dutch. She will be happy to explain any confusions you may have, and she is altogether an excellent teacher. Overall, Wijnie de Groot is a sensitive professor whose learning techniques will help you with your Dutch, while learning in a casual environment as you would expect in everyday life in the Netherlands or in Belgium. The course will challenge you academically, but will not stress you out in ways other classes do. The point is to learn a language and appreciate a culture that has weened down from a political, economic and artistic powerhouse to an historical, cultural, artistic and business respect in light of a modern XXIst century educational approach.
Professor de Groot is an excellent teacher in that she is very open to class discussion and questions. She obviously wanted everyone to understand Dutch and improve their speaking abilities; she answered dozens of personal questions right in class. We did lots of drills and speaking exercises. The professor has a nice sense of humor and often invited us to Dutch themed events on and off campus. I enjoyed learning Dutch with her. However, due to the small class size and funding, the course felt unstructured at times, and she gave us a lot of extraneous material which she would inform us "we wouldn't have to know." This was a waste of time to me; why should we look over two dozen words on kitchen appliances if we don't need to know them? But the class was easy and enjoyable overall.