Winter 2023 - Really interesting class if you're into 1) evolution and the nitty-gritty of how vertebrates came to be how they are etc and 2) like dissections, but being a 6 unit class, very content-heavy. You're basically taking two classes in one, with there being exams that center on lecture content (more short answers/showing you understand the material) and lab exams (more memorization and identification of muscles, organs, etc). All the dates and expectations are laid out for you in the beginning, Dines is a very helpful and funny guy, and the TAs (at least this quarter) are a heaven-send for lab. Go to TA office hours!! That being said, tough class, you have to cram a lot of knowledge into your head and start studying earlier than you think. Most of us including me probably underestimated the first lecture and lab exams and got low scores (borderline fail for me on the first lab exam), but Dines and the TAs do give opportunities for extra credit in the form of a museum trip and filling out the evals. I also learned from how badly I prepared for the first lecture and lab exams and improved from there. TLDR: tough but rewarding and interesting class, just start studying and preparing earlier than you think, as well as asking questions. also lean on each other as students/ask questions in lab esp. - like in HSM, we're all in this together
Winter 2019 - Dr. Blaire really cares about her students, and tends to have very useful office hours. The TAs are equally really helpful about questions you may have about labs. Their research is also really interesting. This is a very challenging class, as it should be because it is 6 units. It isn't recommended that you take this class with Ochem or Physics because of the amount of time you would need to study for the class. There are two types of exams: lab practicals and lecture exams. The tests are all very fair, but there is a lot of memorization involved (which will be time consuming). The memorization involved in the class is mostly insertions/origins/functions/homologies of the animals and bones/bone parts (it helps with later understanding of the functions). The labs are really useful because they help understand the lecture material. Lecture, for the most part, is mandatory because of the participation points you would get via iclicker. The questions are very integrated with the lecture material, and help with later studying for the exams. Dr. Blaire is an amazing lecturer because she is very passionate about what she teaches. There are a lot of resources to do well in the class, and I wish I could take it again.