I think that the old RenderMan topic could have been skipped.Because it's old and most of the code that we wrote during the assignment can be easily done in the GUI of the actual RenderMan 21.Maybe the time spent there could have been used for explain better some other render engine like mental ray.Apart from this it has been a great course!
This lecture is basically a summary of how shading in movies evolved. You get a lot of information from Alexander Wilkie, who is experienced and worked in the industry. The exam is pretty cool, you have to explain a few randomly selected topics and that is it. Beware: there are also 3 homeworks that require some time to finish.