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A lot has changed since she taught this class in previous quarters. There is a midterm and final you have to take, but they were very manageable. The midterm was short answers and as long as you go over the PowerPoint slides and study you will be ok. The final was a 3-5 page reflection paper about what you learned in the class. The BULK of your grade is participation in discussion and in lectures (random check-ins that you have to do in class if you want credit).
I found the lectures to be engaging, but she did not record or bruincast the lectures due to the sensitive material so be aware of that. Your grade was based on weekly reaction 1 page reaction papers, attending 2 guest lectures, and completing either the midterm of the final. You had the option of whether you wanted to do the midterm or the final, but you could not do both. Professor Luft was also very accommodating and lenient with the weekly reaction papers and allowed you to miss up to 2 without penalty.
This class has a lot of important foundational sociology stuff in it and if you're thinking about taking it to fulfill your P&I I recommend doing it sooner than later because it will help you with other stuff. Everyone loves Prof Luft, she is very smart, very kind and empathetic, and her lectures are engaging. However, I took this class Spring 2022 and she was having a difficult quarter and the class was really chaotic. She was disorganized, didn't have contingency plans, made a lot of changes to the syllabus mid quarter, and was impossible to get ahold of. So beware you may have to roll with some chaos if you take her.
The professor was a joy to have. I had her during COVID so things might be different if you take her in-person. The breakdown of the course was:
Participation: Discussion 16%, Journal 32%
Midterm OR Final: 40%
Get-to-know-you handout: 5%
“IRL” lecture attendance 5/19 & 5/26: 6%
You got to choose if you wanted to take the midterm or final by the end of WK 2. The midterm consisted of three short-answer questions as well as a short essay (4-5 pages double-spaced). You had a few days to work on it so it was open-note. The final was a creative piece of your choice. So a painting, collage, podcast, etc. and relate back to concepts of the course. She recorded all the lectures and her lectures were enjoyable to me.
Workload was definitely manageable. Journals are submitted by the end of the week (Friday) so don't slack on the readings. She is very approachable and seems to enjoy teaching. She offers extra credit throughout the course; some require more work than others. Overall, I loved this class and hope to take her again.
If H. Kaur is still a TA for this course; take her! She was amazing. Presentations were well-prepared and she was so nice. Plus, she graded fairly and always had things graded quite quickly.
I took this course during Spring 2021, so it was all online. We had two lectures per week (these were recorded and uploaded to CCLE in case you couldn't make it live). Professor Luft made lectures extremely interesting. We also had readings to go along with lectures each week, which were a little on the heavy side sometimes, but extremely do-able. We had journal assignments due each week. These were based on the material for the week, and the prompt was given either during the first lecture of the week or during the second lecture of the week. These only had to be one page in length (double spaced), so it was EXTREMELY light work (these are the only assignments you have to turn in). The majority of our work was based on participation. Attending section was mandatory and you received 2 points for each one you attended (btw Sima was the BEST TA, so if you have the chance, take it with her as a TA!!!!). And then you have two live guest lectures that are mandatory (these are both towards the end of the quarter). And late work is accepted anytime, for one point taken off. And by the 2nd week you have to decide whether you want to do the midterm (which is an essay 4-5 pages and 3 short answer questions) or the final (which is a creative piece such as a drawing, poem, podcast, etc., followed by a 5-10 minute video recording of yourself tying your creative piece back to the course materials). I chose the final, and it was extremely easy and fun. The topics we cover in this course are extremely relevant and important. If you get the chance PLEASE take this course with Professor Luft. Not only is it an extremely easy-going course, but the professor is amazing!!!