All Ratings and Reviews for Asma Sayeed
This class was one of the most interesting classes I have taken at UCLA. There is a lot of reading but it is actually very interesting and I was able to get an A in the class without completing full readings (as in I missed a few). I came into this class with no background on the subject and the TA's were very clear as well as the professor so that was fine.
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Overall, the class is really easy if you like to memorize things! The exams are short essays though, and I believe she did easy quizzes throughout the quarter.
I took this as a GE expecting it to be a lot easier than it is. If you are like me and REALLY hate reading, just know by not doing the assigned reading you really screw yourself. Luckily I switched to pass no pass and saved my GPA. This is because the midterm really ruined me. It was half multiple choice which was based off vocab terms (easy) and a second half based off reading. So don't expect an easy A. I wish I was more interested in the subject because every discussion I had to lie about doing the reading and try really hard to make something up about the readings to get the participation credit. There is no final which is nice but there are two papers you have to write. The first paper was really easy and is really short (like 2-3 pages). You have to visit a Muslim institution for the final paper but she arranges a lot of places you can go to for this so finding a place isn't a problem. Try and find somebody to share an uber with because I spent way too much money on that. If you are interested in the subject you'll enjoy this class otherwise, not so much.
A lot of work but fair grading. Take Evan as TA, fair grader and a great TA overall. Discussions are mandatory but very engaging. A lot of readings but skimming should suffice
This class was one of the most interesting classes I have taken in UCLA so far. Professor Sayeed takes care to ensure that we learn outside of the classroom, and frequently invites different guest speakers to lectures so as to provide us with different perspectives. Her lectures and slides are incredibly clear and well organized, and she highlights key terms that would definitely come out for the quizzes and midterms. There was once she brought the first and only Muslim judge into lecture to speak with us, and many other times where she brought in various PHD candidates from other universities specialising in a variety of topics to teach us too. Grades comprise of 30% participation (in discussion sections only, not for lectures - but active participation is required i.e. students have to come prepared with answers for reading prompts. This really depends on your TA - I had a pretty strict one, where even though I attended all the sections and responded to every prompt earnestly, I received 97% for participation), 15% quizzes (there are 2 pop quizzes, normally given nearing the end of the course. Quizzes do require you to study beforehand), 10% midterm (requires memorisation of arabic terms, and ID and response for readings), 20% papers (2 papers 10% each, TAs tend to grade harshly at the start and more leniently towards the end) , and 25% of the final paper. The final paper requires a field trip to a local Muslim institution of your choice (note that transportation is not provided, although Professor Sayeed makes the effort to coordinate with select institutions beforehand). There is a lot of flexibility in the paper as long as you consult your TA/Professor before embarking on the project. There are many extra credit opportunities to take advantage of, many of which are extracurricular seminars where Professor Sayeed was the facilitator. Overall, even though the class was a lot of work, the assignments and lectures were all very interesting and engaging. Would definitely take this class again.
Pretty hard class if you have zero background in Islam. TA's said that the professor made the class harder this year, so the grade curves aren't the most accurate. Midterms weren't easy. I would have taken another GE if I had known.
Prof. Sayeed is very intelligent and engaging. However, there were a few things about this class that I didn't like...
1. She doesn't allow any form of technology in class (so all notes must be handwritten) and only posts a few of the slides from lecture. Because I'm a slow writer, I ended up missing a lot of the information and couldn't refer back to most of the slides because they weren't available. :(
2. The tests were very inconsistent! The first one was incredibly easy and the last two were pretty hard. They include fill-in-the-blank, short answer, and multiple choice reading comprehension questions.
The breakdown is as follows: 3 midterms, 0 finals, 1 six-page paper, and participation points for showing up to discussion. There are a lot of readings (which I didn't really do) and there was 1 pop-quiz that was just factored into participation. We also got one 5-point extra credit assignment and study guides for all of the midterms.
Overall, I feel like I learned meaningful information and liked the class material. It was stressful at times but if you study enough for the exams you should get at least an A-. The paper was also graded really generously so that's a plus!
I made the mistake and took this class as a first-year freshman for my first quarter at UCLA. IT WAS SUPER TOUGH. She gave us a super long study guide of terms that would be on the midterm and final. You had to go to lecture to get the information. Her slides were posted, but she mentioned key things that were not on the slides. The final was super hard because she made us do a 7 page essay and an in-class final. It was a challenging course, but I would take it again because I did leave the class with a firmer grasp on Islam and its followers. Amazing professor, just a really challenging class. Also, I had Evan as a TA and he was amazing. If you're looking for an easy GE, don't do this. If you really are interested in Islam and want to be challenged, Professor Sayeed is your professor!
Islam in the West with Professor Sayeed was one of my favorite classes at UCLA. Her lectures are very engaging and thought-provoking. The discussion sections are also fun; I had a lot of meaningful discussions with my TA and classmates. By taking this class, you will be one step ahead of everyone else in understanding issues regarding Muslims in the West.
I took this class last quarter and loved it. Not only did it completely educated me about Muslims and the Islamic religion, but it totally changed my perspective. And really thats what classes are for, to change and educate students about real life and very relevant issues. Professor Sayeed was also a great professor. She has lecture slides, but they don't have much content, she likes to say a lot more than are on the slides. Her tests are VERY fair, and the paper at the end isn't bad at all! There's three midterms, no final, but a final paper. She also gives you a study guide for each test so you can know exactly what to look over. Overall loved this class, gave me a profound sense of knowledge and Professor Sayeed is very knowledgeable, sweet, and great at answering questions and being very open and clear!
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