Perspectives in Study of American Culture
Where do I start with "Professor" Allmendinger? Obviously at UCLA, you will have a wide range of professors and you won't be able to fully please anyone, but this man is a joke. His class is a joke. If you want to sit in a class and listen to someone say "I don't know" or "I haven't thought about that before" to simple statements and questions, then this is the guy for you, but if you want a REAL education, then avoid Allmendinger at all costs. I don't even know how he is able to teach here. He has no clue. He grades based on whether or not you "bored" him...literally. He commented that my paper was "boring" and "dry,"...WTF??? I had NO clue we were suppose to humor this guy for a grade! Is this American Idol? No, it's a class and if Professor A understood that first then MAYBE he wouldn't suck. He literally prepares his lectures 30minutes before class and its so obvious that his material is googled or wikipedia'd, not based on research. He provides NO extra insight in the class. In fact, thank GOD that the students are of high caliber, because that's where the learning comes from...otherwise we just spend our time "teaching [him] things he doesn't know." Professor A actually manages to dilute the education we are getting here with shallow teaching. What makes me so mad is how difficult a grader he is. For some one who says "I don't know" multiple times throughout class, he sure does have out of this world expectations of his students- we have to be smart, funny, charming, and good dressers to get A's. If you want to be a student and not an entertainer avoid this guy. Allmendinger AllmenSUCKS.
I honestly have to completely disagree with the two previous posts, which I guess were posted by two of my current classmates, as I am also taking the class right now. I think that Professor Lee is an exceedingly brilliant woman, sometimes to the point where some of the material is above my head--but I don't find that she ever makes it inaccessible. It is difficult to participate sometimes in discussion because of how dense and complicated the theory/works can get, but I have found this class to be beyond satisfying. I have learned so much over such a short period of time, and can honestly say that this is the class that made me happy to be an English major. There is quite a bit of reading, but the topic of the course ("Narrating through Body Parts") is vast in itself, and I think that Lee has done a pretty good job of giving the class a thorough look into Body Studies. Not many people go to office hours to speak with her about their concerns, which I suppose would account for some of the dismay. I find her to be engaging, certainly not monotonous (I am taking an ethics class with a professor who DEFINES monotony, so I understand the difference), and incredibly well-versed in her subject. Not only that, but she knows how to communicate difficult material with the students. I enjoyed her class so much that I will be taking a seminar with her next quarter. If you are up for the intellectual challenge, take a class with Lee. She is great.
I unfortunately have to agree with the two reviews below. I chose to take his class after hearing about his "unconventional" teaching style; but "unconventional" really just meant he sounds like an overzealous preacher and slightly obnoxious at that. He came to class late everyday. By the end of second week, I really didn't care if I was late or not since I knew he'd always be even later. He also said he'd take attendance, but never really did and by the time it was 8th week, less than half the class showed up (he either didn't notice, or didn't care). Also, he is BIG on class participation (50% OF YOUR GRADE). For those of you who are more shy to speak up in class or just plain don't like raising your hand, I WOULD CAUTION YOU AWAY FROM HIS CLASSES. There is an online forum where you're suppose to discuss the works (which almost nobody read because nobody could understand them), but no matter how many posts you have, your chances of getting an A in the class is slim to none if he doesn't recognize your name from speaking in class. Honestly, I don't know why I kept going to class. I probably would've gotten the same grade if I had stopped going by 4th week. The other 50% of your grade is a ridiculously annoying 12-15 page research paper that pretty much sucks your life away. He is indeed a nice guy and I've gone to numerous office hours, but every time I walked out feeling like he helped my paper none and only criticized it. Also, the works we had to read were pretty horrible. Most I just scratched the surface of before I gave up and others just plain didn't read. And during lecture he offers no background or insight himself, just basically let's the few opinionated ones in the class talk on and on. Overall, I probably would not take a class with him again. His teaching style is something I didn't particularly like and nor did I walk away with anything I felt valuable.