Based on 50 Users
Very reading heavy. If you don't usually do the readings for a class, then this isn't for you because the entire course is designed around the readings, with the midterms being "Reading Exams". That being said, this makes the class pretty manageable because as long as you do the readings, you should be successful. Lectures are helpful, but you don't need to attend them if you understand the readings well enough. There are "small writing assignments" that are 2-page essays, but they ask you to interact with a reading so as long as you do the readings, these should be easy and some of them are actually kind of fun, so if you're scared of writing essays this isn't bad at all.
SOC GEN 5
Dr. Landecker is the sweetest professor! She's always smiling and very approachable. There is a lot of reading involved, but they are all pretty interesting and nothing too dense. It helps to have a little bit of a biology background for understanding certain topics like antibiotic resistance, but Dr. LAndecker doesn't require you to know too much about that. Your grade is based on a paper, a midterm, and the final which are all graded by the TA's. Take this class!
Dr. Landecker is awesome. Luckily, this was one of the smaller classes. I was extremely nervous about taking this course because of the natural/biological science content. Im a soc major - I know NOTHING about biology or technical, scientific stuff and this course initially scared me. I actually expected to drop the class on the first day (I was THAT intimidated), but I'm SO GLAD I hung in there! Before taking her class, I would have been just fine going through my life not knowing what a genome is or does. Landecker really changed that. She doesnt expect you to have in-depth knowledge about science and she makes that very clear. The readings are long - some are difficult, but many are actually very interesting. She gives really good prompts for papers and makes them fun to do. I actually enjoyed the research I did for 2 of the papers - learned alot. She's a fair grader. Reasonable amount of assignments. She's strict on attendance, students browsing the internet during her lecture, and insists EVERYONE participate. She will randomly call on people and ask questions about the readings, etc, so you HAVE to do the readings, or you'll look like a dope. But like I said, the readings are interesting. If you're a soc major, I definately recommend taking her class - very informative, unlike any soc course I've taken. She's a great asset to UCLA - the woman knows her stuff and designs a great curriculum. Overall, it wasnt exactly the easiest class, but it wasnt the most difficult either. It will force you to really think about some things you may not have really thought about. Lastly, be NICE to her -aside from her taking a great interest in her students, she really is a nice person.
I actually took Society and Genetics 5 with Professor Landecker.
Professor Landecker is extremely knowledgeable and very passionate about what she teaches. She does a really good job of explaining the concepts and articles for the class.
Basically, this class is very interesting for people interested in social and biological problems like antibiotic resistance and diabetes and obesity. The course gets repetitive and the lectures are boring, but if you do the reading and keep up with the assignments you will be fine. There's a a midterm, a paper, and a final. Make sure you are specific for all of these. The TA's are pretty picky in their grading. If you're looking for an easy GE, this is NOT it. It's way too much reading so you're better off taking something else. If you need to take this as a major requirement, keep up on the work and really just try to please your TA.
I took Society and Genetics 5 with Landecker (it didn't let me put this as an option...)
She is very sweet and passionate about what she does. However, lectures are boring, and it is a lot of reading.
Everything is pretty interesting reading and material-wise, but everything is pretty repetitive. Basically, the process of going to lecture and discussion can be boring, but in the end, you come out of this class with a lot of valuable, interesting knowledge.
Honestly, just get on your TA's good side. Your grade is based off of participation, a paper, a midterm and a final. Mostly essays and such, so just try to do well on those and you'll be fine, even if you don't pay attention to lectures and read until the last minute.
I am in the process of taking M164 with Prof Landecker and am writing this only because it is by far one of the BEST classes I have taken at UCLA. The material in interesting (Politics of Reproduction), Landecker approaches it in a nonjudgemental/non-opinionated way, readings are great, and there is an appropriate amount of work. I have not received my grade, but this is one of the few classes that I can say regardless of how I end up doing, I am VERY glad I'm taking it. Also, get Chris as your TA, he's involved, answers questions, and helps with quizzes, etc.
I took Soc M164 Politics of Reproduction with Landecker (this is not an option you can pick when rating the class on bruinwalk). She is really sweet and and you can tell she is interested and passionate about what she is teaching. This class in itself was super interesting, and is one of my favorite classes that I have taken so far. There are 4 or 5 easy quizzes, a midterm, a final, and a term paper. Everything is graded fairly and I ended up with an A!
Actual class taken: Society and Genetics 5
Dr. Landecker taught the first half of the course and Dr. Lynch Alfaro taught the second half.
Just as the other reviewers said, Dr. Landecker is a very kind person. However, she is a very boring lecturer and I struggled to stay awake during her classes.
The midterm was during Dr. Landecker's part of the class and was far more difficult than most of us expected. The average was in the mid-70s. This was definitely the most difficult part of the class.
The essay was seven pages consisting of a 1 page introduction to the issue (antibiotic resistance or the microbiome) and then 2 separate 3-page testimonies to Congress about the issue. It's easy as long as you don't wait until the day before its due to start.
Participation is simply doing the weekly standing assignment (involves reading 2 articles, writing key terms, a quick summary, and asking one question for each article) and occasionally speaking during discussion. Easy points.
5 quizzes, all during the the last half of the course. The lowest gets dropped. The readings are irrelevant for these, just review your notes.
The final was given by Dr. Lynch Alfaro and was a bit easier than Landecker's.
Overall the class was not too difficult. Plenty of opportunities for easy points to bring your grade up. That said, there are definitely easier GEs for you to take. If subjects like antibiotic resistance, the microbiome, and reproduction rates/techniques interest you, go ahead and take the class.
SOC GEN 5
I had professor Landecker for the first half of course than professor Alfaro for the last part. Professor Alfaro was the better lecturer. Professor Landecker is really passionate and approachable, but I had a hard time following her lecture--it seemed to me that she jumped from one topic and one topic rather quickly and I always got lost. Going to her office hours didn't help me much either--she sometimes never really answered my questions.
Overall, I suggest taking the class with Professor Alfaro who is the better lecturer and keeps the class engaged ! Also her power points were practically all you needed to do well in her class!
**SOC GEN 5**
I took this class during fall quarter of 2014, when Landecker taught the first half and Lynch-Alfaro the second half. Professor Landecker is a nice lady, but her lectures are incredibly dry. I fell asleep in every single lecture no matter how hard I tried to stay awake. Landecker's quizzes and midterm were arguably harder than the ones given by Lynch-Alfaro. Most people in this class are pre-human biology majors, but I'm a political science major who took this class as a GE. It was really easy, though, especially if you took AP bio in high school. I ended up with an "A+" in the class with minimal effort. I'd recommend the class with Professor Lynch-Alfaro instead.