Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.
The class is graded as:
25% Photo Analysis Paper
50% Takehome Final (which was an essay, mine was around 10 pages)
So you can't really afford to do bad on one any of the assignments.
Media histories is pretty interesting, and Dan Harries is a pretty interesting guy (he said he was the first person to stream a movie online on his website). Guy knows his stuff, but can be confusing at times when explaining concepts in class. I didn't do any of the readings after week 1, you really didn't need them to help in the class. The required textbook was super thick and only a few chapters pertained to the class.
The Photo Analysis Paper should be pretty easy, just gotta make sure you understand the concepts of how you are analyzing the photo. I messed that up b/c I misunderstood the prompt and got a B- on the first paper which almost screwed my grade b/c the class has only 3 grade inputs.
The midterm was I think 5 short answer questions, e.g. 'how did the development of photography, and a semiotic analysis of a theatre advertisement from back in the day. GO TO YOUR TA BEFORE THE MIDTERM AND GO THROUGH THE STUDY GUIDE. He gave out a study guide with like 30 questions, and the 5ish questions on the exam were 5 picked from that list. I managed to clutch it up on the midterm and get an A, since I made sure I knew everything on the study guide and got help from my TA.
The final paper was kinda hard, as it entailed relating the entire course to a couple themes that he always talks about. TA's can't help you with the paper since its a final, so you are on your own.
I would recommend this course, even though Dan is not that clear at times. Subject is pretty interesting. DO NOT SKIP LECTURE, you will get so behind. Since you really don't have to do the readings, there is virtually no homework, you just gotta write 2 papers and study for a manageable midterm.
Professor Harries is an extremely disconnected lecturer with a poorly designed class. His lectures were very dry and unorganized, often with out a specific theme of topic. It seemed like he would just ramble on about whatever he wanted and even made up stuff. He said this was okay because, and I quote, "That's what you do when you have a PhD. " The readings were irrelevant but the midterm about the things he made up in class. The lectures were fairly useless after the first midterm because the final was take home. For not having to go to a lot of the lectures and doing minimal work, the class is overall fairly easy but boring and sometimes absolutely pointless.
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