Mind over Matter: History, Science, and Philosophy of Brain
Winter 2017 - Okay, here's the deal. I think the reviews of this class are polarizing because it mashes up two opposite sides of the academic spectrum: humanities (history, philosophy, literature) and science (neuroscience, psychology [which could swing humanities], and neuroanatomy). Some of the basic neuroscience concepts swing nearly on the side of chemistry-type ideas. It's interdisciplinary and if you find yourself skilled on one end of the spectrum and are not willing to stretch out of your comfort zone and work hard to learn the concepts on the other end, don't take this class. I began this class fully expecting it to AP Psychology 2.0, and in some cases it was (if you took AP Psych, you're set for quite a bit of the neuroanatomy and psychology), but in many cases it is not. I find myself pretty well-rounded in that while I lean more humanities, I can switch to the more science-based concepts with a bit of work. Learning the neuroscience is a steep learning curve, even for those in science majors. However, if you go to your TA's office hours, the professors' office hours, and make sure to ask questions, you WILL get it. This class takes effort and I think very few would say its an easy A, but it is 100% worth taking. It was the best experience of my life and I learned so much. I think the first quarter is much harder than the second quarter because by the second quarter you can apply the knowledge from the first quarter to real concepts like movement and mental illness, which I found incredibly interesting. The seminar was also good, just be sure to choose a topic you really like. Fall and winter quarters have a midterm and final (multiple choice/short answer style), weekly quizzes, a final paper, and a midterm/shorter paper. It's all doable. The tests can be challenging, but if you do the weekly study questions they are very manageable. If you don't put in the effort, you will be miserable and get a poor grade. This isn't a class you can just skate by in, not study, and not do the readings. However, it is a class that will enrich your freshman year and put you in a great place for your subsequent studies at UCLA.
Fall 2016 - The course is fun but a challenge, it's doable. The cluster is taught by professors from the subjects: sciences but also humanities. It was a lot of fun. Make sure to form a study group, they help a lot. It's a good intro to life here at UCLA. I am selling the course textbooks for cheap; the price is negotiable. text me at **********