Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.
Writing this in defense of Professor Hanscom, who I thought was a brilliant mind. Although, yes his lectures were often filled with his various tangents, I still found them to be interesting. Also, he often provided a lot of context for the films from a historical perspective, which I was not expecting, but I honestly enjoyed that I got to learn a bit about Korean history. And honestly I don't think that his lectures needed to be the most focused, because at the end of it all this class was just about appreciating and familiarizing yourself with a handful of Korean films.
The films he assigned can be hard to get through (I ended up binging 4 during finals week) but after watching all of them, I don't think there was a "bad" movie among them (except maybe Spring on the Peninsula, didn't care too much for that one haha.)
The grading comes from pop quizzes which are essentially impossible not to get an A on if you have the faintest idea of what the movie is about, he might as well be asking if the sky is blue. There are two essays, one on a film from class, and one of your own choosing. I'm not the strongest writer, and I wrote both the night before during crackhead hours and got a 18/20 and 17/20 respectively. The final tests identification based off a quote, which again is painfully obvious if you've seen the films, but you'll have to identify the director of the accompanying film which is the only thing you'll need to "study." One part is a short answer, but the only questions that I didn't think were obvious if you've seen the movies or been to lecture were the ones regarding history. Then there is a long essay regarding any of the themes throughout the films that he makes painfully clear and hammers into you during lectures- again if you've seen the movies and been to some of the lectures, this should not be difficult at all. I only did the readings for the films I really enjoyed, so the majority I did not read, and they did not seem to be tested in any way. And of course there is participation which I think is just from attended discussion.
Overall, I actually thoroughly enjoyed Professor Hanscom and this course. I think everything he had to say was interesting, and his "rambling" made the class seem more like a seminar than a lecture. And if you watch the films, which can be done at 1.5 speed, any of the other assignments should not be difficult at all. I would recommend this class if you are at all interested in the topic or just want to take a class with a quirky and engaging professor :)
i was initially very excited when i saw this new addition to the class planner. watching movies and writing some essays didn’t seem to be too bad, and i liked my TA, donghyun, as he was nice and clearly enjoyed his job. however, i absolutely hated this class. hanscom was quite possibly the worst lecturer i’ve encountered at ucla. he’s such a disorganized person who went on the most useless tangents. was he passionate about the topic? yes. but his passion took away from the topic itself. i literally could not bear to listen to him. i would have never gone to class if it wasnt for the pop quizzes he gave. most of the movies assigned were not engaging, even for someone who loves korean movies. his lectures felt like they were irrelevant and ended up not being extremely useful. the assigned readings were absolutely useless and were never tested in any capacity. if you’re going to assign readings, at least do something with them. knowing i spent tuition money on this joke of a class will haunt me. i have not learned a single thing about film history and feel like i wasted 10 weeks of my life on such a messy class. hanscom’s like that professor who is nice and you can tell is trying, but the course fell very flat. don’t take this class. take another GE that will be easier and likely more interesting.
Hanscom had so much potential. He did not fulfill it. His lectures were so pointless and boring. No one showed up by week 3. Everyone always fell asleep. As long as you watch the movies and know their plot and go to discussion, you're fine. Lecture slides are useful to slightly skim through in preparation for the final, but honestly the discussions prepare you well enough. I got an A on every single assignment (including the final exam) other than ONE quiz, and I ended up with a B+. Is that not extremely unfair? There were no extra credit assignments and no accommodations to even raise my grade slightly.
The grading is as follows:
Essay #1: 20%
Essay #2: 20%
Quizzes: 20% (4 pop quizzes, 5% each)
Final Exam: 20%
The final exam should've been weighted more. A single quiz lowered me to a B+. Granted, it was an easy quiz, but such a simple assignment shouldn't have been such a detrimental factor towards my final grade. Don't take this class unless you want to waste your time and get annoyed.
Based on other reviews, it looks like Professor Hanscom changed the course quite a bit to adjust to the online format. The lectures were prerecorded and uploaded to CCLE, so they could be watched at any time. It was set up so that you watch a film each week and complete all the assigned readings + watch the lectures before Wednesday when a 250-word response was due. There were three longer writing assignments: a film analysis, a comparison between a film and the story it was based on, and a film review. All were pretty straightforward. The majority of the films were interesting (there were some older ones at the beginning of the quarter that were harder to get through) and I found most of the readings pretty interesting. Some of the lectures were longer than they needed to be, but they can be watched at 1.5-2x speed without missing too much
The grade breakdown is 10% participation, 30% weekly response papers, 60% longer writing assignments.
This was an awesome class. He really is passionate about the subject, and he provides very detailed analysis of the movies in a bigger context. I would take his class again if I had space in my schedule. The class is pretty straight forward. You just need to watch a movie once a week. Honestly, it is not that bad. Also, a lot of the essays are asking for your analysis of the movie. I recommend taking this class, and also getting to know the professor. He is a cool guy.
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