Genetics, Evolution, and Ecology
Fall 2019 - Absolute garbage professor. Yet another reason why I hate most of the South Campus professors in this school. This speaks to a broader problem in general in UCLA, which is the lack of consistency in the quality of professors as well as little repercussions for having students screwed over to boost the professor's ego or due to negligence. I don't care how nice Princess Confusion is. I cannot stand her incompetency and I think should be fired
Winter 2021 - THIS IS PRETTY LONG AND DETAILED SO BE WARNED: To start off, Dr. Kane is an "average" professor. I can't really think of anything bad about her lectures, she was pretty clear most of the time, and if not, she'd explain the material again. The lecture material itself is pretty boring unless you are interested in ecology. However, Dr. Kane was pretty fun and nice herself. She definitely tried to connect with her students and make this a pretty welcoming environment. If you're having to choose between a professor who doesn't have any reviews on Bruinwalk, I'd definitely take the safe route and go with Dr. Kane. Nothing can really go wrong with that. About the class itself, LS7B is everything that is wrong about the LS core curriculum. Launchpad is either too in depth and has nothing to do with the course or lacks material that we need to know for the course, which is honestly ridiculous. A complete waste of time. However, if you don't at least skim, the lectures won't make sense, and you end up guessing on all the clicker questions. The midterms and finals brought confusing wording to a whole new level. One benefit is that the structure is pretty similar to LS7A so it's not a big adjustment. The point distribution is as follows for this quarter: Lecture/iClicker: 72 points (80 possible) Launchpad Assignments: 45 points (50 possible) Launchpad PRQs: 45 points (50 possible) Launchpad PEQs: 45 points (50 possible) Lab Worksheets: 135 points (150 possible) Midterm 1: 120 points (123 possible) Midterm 2: 120 points (123 possible) Final: 200 points As you can see above, there is a drop for most of the categories, which was honestly really helpful for this class especially. The launchpad assignments and the PRQs were pretty standard and doable. However the launchpad PEQs for this class is where it all went to hell. Most of them are around 10-15 questions in an hour, and never had I actually taken up the whole hour for these PEQs. They were oddly (insanely) hard, especially the for the first four weeks, but they gradually got easier towards the last few weeks. Like LS7A, 7B is a point based class, so just try to rack up as many points as you can. One of the best parts about this class is that the midterms and finals aren't worth as much as they were in 7A since the extra bonus of the labs being worth 135 points instead of the usual discussion being worth around 80 points was really helpful, but I'll get into that a little bit later. Now on to the midterms and the final. I had no idea what I sat through those 2/3 hours I was supposed to take the test. The tests got progressively harder, making the final the hardest test. The first midterm was alright considering the material was a bit easier in the beginning (despite the absurd difficulty of the PEQs). The second midterm was...rough to say the least. I know a lot of people did really well on it but it was the complete opposite for me, meaning I barely had a passing grade. HOWEVER THIS IS WHEN THIS CLASS COMES IN CLUTCH....THERE'S EXTRA CREDIT AFTER EACH MIDTERM!!!! You can earn up to 8 points extra credit on each mini midterm assignment that's assigned after each midterm. This really helps boost your score and gives you a slight buffer in this class. However, this wasn't an option for the final unfortunately, which also made the final so much harder. The final was the only test I seriously studied for and I barely managed to get a B. However with the help of all the extra credit from the mini midterms and the other small ec assignments (9 points total) and getting full credit on the other categories, I did manage to pull an A out of this class. This just really goes to show how much of a joke this class/this entire series is. To save the best for last, my lab section was absolutely *chefs kiss*. I had an amazing TA, shoutout to Shomik. I highly recommend having him as your TA if he ever decides to TA for this class again. Unlike the other TAs, he graded the labs based on completion (which was basically a free 135 points) and completely disregarded that BS rule of having to submit lab/discussion work no later than 15 min after the section. I never understood the need to grade discussion work based on accuracy. As mentioned in the LS7B syllabus, students are supposed to cement their understanding of the material in discussion, meaning we are supposed to LEARN and not be worried what grade we receive on each worksheet. So overall thoughts? LS Curriculum itself: -10000/5 if thats even possible :/ LS7B itself : 3/5 (saved by my amazing TA) Dr Kane: 3.5/5 (nothing bad or particularly outstanding, she did her best and she's a fun professor) If I'm going to be honest, I completely finessed this class. Still don't know how I made it out with an A. I didn't go to a single office hour or problem solving session or run over the learning outcomes for each unit. This is a far cry from the amount of work and effort I put into LS7A. So if you are slacking this quarter, know that you can still do well in this class. But the real question is, would I take this class again? Heck no, I'm not a masochist.
Winter 2021 - professor Kremer was honestly what saved this class for me, he was super into the content and related a lot of the stuff he was doing as a researcher to what we were learning in the class which made it more engaging to me. he hosted this zoom session where he talked about becoming a researcher and it absolutely pushed me in the right direction (as a rare bio major who isn't premed). he gave me advice, emailed me, sent me resources, and did so much out of his way as a professor, i genuinely felt cared for and i'm really thankful for that! overall, i would recommend taking LS7B with professor Kremer.