Evolutionary Dynamics of Sex

Description: Lecture, three hours; discussion, one hour. Enforced requisite: Life Sciences 1. Fitness dynamics of reproduction when females and males are in conflict over reproductive decisions, with focus on animals with human examples as appropriate. Emphasis on natural selection thinking, sexual selection, and origins of sexual conflict, including Fisherian sex allocation, evolution of manipulation through deceptive communication, and theory of Darwinian sexual conflict. Letter grading.

Units: 4.0
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Overall Rating 2.0
Easiness 2.2/ 5
Clarity 1.3/ 5
Workload 2.3/ 5
Helpfulness 1.5/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Professor Gowaty's class was really fun! You have two midterms, four mini writing assignments, 2 homework assignments, a group project, and no final. While it looks like a whole lot of work for ten weeks, it's completely doable! The writing assignments are mini "essays". You are given a prompt and you answer it, citing either articles given in class or outside sources to back up your thesis. If you are a little unsure on how to structure your essay, talk to your TA. My TA (Charlie) was super helpful when it came to answering questions. The two homework assignments consisted of reading an article and answering some questions. They weren't difficult questions--all the answers were found in the article. The group project consisted of critiquing Isabella Rossellini "Green Porno" (I won't spoil what it is--google it on your own to find out!) What most people wound up doing was picking one of her videos and critiquing it using the information we had learned in class. Again, it might sound pretty daunting but it was a pretty easy project. I did really well on both midterms. What I would do was take notes of everything she said in lecture. To study, I would go back to my notes and focus on things she kept repeating or things that she heavily emphasized in class. And, like stated above, there was NO final for this class. :) I really enjoyed Dr. Gowaty's class. Sure, she might have some unusual classroom rules (she invites you to not come to class wearing perfumes or smells on your clothes, which is hard given that a lot of us like to wash our clothes in nice smelling detergents; she doesn't hold in person office hours), but she was one of the few professors that made an honest effort to get to know ALL of her students. She would invite and encourage everyone to skype with her at least once during the quarter. I did skype with her and it was a very worthwhile experience. If you take this class, make sure to skype with her! She will remember you in class and who knows, maybe that will be to your advantage later. :) She also offered our class an extra credit assignment. You had to watch some bird migration documentary and write down a list of proximate vs. ultimate questions. I ended up with an A in the class. This has been one of my favorite classes here at UCLA and I definitely recommend it!
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