All Ratings and Reviews for James A Desveaux
Professor Desveaux may ramble on occasion (well maybe more than on occasion) but he is bar none one of the best and most caring professors at UCLA. He's the kind of guy you can get trapped in the hallway with in the UCDC center and spend an engaging half hour talking about random, interesting topics.
The CAPPP program in and of itself was one of the best experiences of my college career and one that I will remember for sometime. For anyone considering the program, do it! But like many people have said narrow your topic ahead of time, advice I failed to heed until after turning in the rough draft. This meant a very stressful last week attempting to write a bulk of my 25 page research paper while the few who did chip away at it ahead of time got to enjoy the city of Washington DC. Like other people have said, the seminar is more or less a waste of time and one that many people attended hungover. However, the one on one time spent with Professor Desveaux and the TA were very helpful in bettering your paper. It helps that Desveaux shared an interest in my topic so he gave me a lot of insight towards where my paper should head. All in all it was a great experience and Professor Desveaux is definitely one of my favorite professors at UCLA.
His upper division courses are great. He's a very laid back professor and pretty straight forward.
I thought my paper deserved an A+. I did not get the grade I deserved. By researching the effects of Ben Affleck and election reform, I was able to prove me thesis unquestionably. However, I guess I didnt impress everybody. I must admit, the CAPPP seminar was quite impressive. I didnt have to read anything at all. Just pretend like you know what youre saying and you'll be right. Personally, Im more well informed than 99% of all people out there so naturally I knew what I was talking about. It's just a shame that other students werent up to my intellect or took as much interest in the seminar as I did. During my internship, the only thing I can still remember learning was the wonderful lunches they served every day. Other than that, I cant recall much.
His grading policy is more personal then lecture/paper based. Get to know him if you want a good grade. He directs the CAPPP program now.After doing the program, I recommend students look for options to go to dc through expo if you're looking for a much less rigorous and laid back academic schedule and want to explore the east coast more.
His class was like totally cool and stuff. Like I had a great time learning and stuff. It was way cool. Washington, DC is really neat and stuff. I worked at the National Democratic Institute of Iraq and learned a whole bunch of stuff. It was more fun than stealing a keg of beer from a bar. The research paper was way hard but it was way cool cause before the paper, I couldnt type at all. Now, I can type pretty fast. I give the program a thumbs up!!!
It's funny, looking at this ongoing debate about Desveaux's teaching abilities, I'm amazed to see any kind of vitriolic passion run through the lethargic veins of CAPPER's. Since the program is a political science program, one would assume that those individuals taking part in it, would be politically aware and active. I came in with the expectation that individuals would have stances on issues and debates would be rampant. However, this was not the case. The only real debate I remember taking place was overhearing a group of students debate the merits of Georgetown bars versus those in Adam's Morgan. Classes were an exercise in futility, as questions thrown out by Desveaux would remain unanswered. A few boisterous students did try to participate but substance was severely lacking. As for Desveaux, I think he did the best with what he was given. Furthermore, Desveaux possesses a wide breadth of knowledge which is of utmost importance in a program such as this one. I know for my topic, I chose a rather obscure topic which was related to the field of study of my scholar. I have heard accusations that researching the same topic as one's scholar was unfair. That it presented an individual with an unfair advantage. All I know is that I did not abuse this privilege. I cannot speak for others. In regards to the grading, Desveaux really attempted to explain the reasons behind his grading. Upon receiving my research paper, I was amazed to see a one page letter explaining the professor's reasoning behind his grading. For him to have done this for 30 students, is simply amazing.
I disagree with the prior poster. I took the CAPPP Research Seminar with Professor Desveaux, and thought that he graded fairly. I find it laughable that the prior poster's evaluation of Desveaux's teaching is based on the grade that s/he received for the course; you definitely have to EARN a good grade for the seminar. Go figure. It was a great experience (though admittedly, Professor Desveaux would digress periodically --- but the digressions were fun). If you're interested in growing intellectually and being challenged, do CAPPP --- otherwise, look elsewhere.
I took Desveaux's research seminar in DC and really enjoyed it. His quirky sense of humor keeps the class rolling, which is good because he is not keen on ending class early. He is extremely intelligent and interesting to talk to. And he loves to talk. I agree with the other poster ... it is easier to get a good grade with Desveaux if you get to know him. I don't believe it is all subjectivity though - I found that my talks with him were very useful in guiding my research. I highly recommend Desveaux as a professor and the CAPPP program overall.
I was not enrolled in the CAPPP seminar, however I did spend my last several academic quarters living and working in DC. I observed Desvaux's teaching brilliance up close and personal. I was so taken with the CAPPP program that I became sor of an honorary part of it, soliciting Desveaux's expertise on my paper. I would echo the sentimnets of others who point out the width and breadth of Desvaux's knowledge. I would reccomend CAPPP to anybody who can get accepted to the program. Living in DC is awesome, there are lots of nice girls who are fun to hook up and hang out with. there are many fine establishments throughout town, be sure to say hi to Dana at the Holiday Inn hotel bar for me. If you follow the Captain's advice, anybody could be treated like a VIP when enjoying the DC nightlife. You'll meet many, many, many cool people from the different UC campuses at your interniship, and learn a lot about seldom explored, nuanced topics. I would reccomend the CAPPP quarter in Washington to all of you.
Desveaux is a trojan horse. His amiable personality will lure you into thinking that he is a good teacher. Then when the time comes to hand out the grades, you will realize what a terrible teacher he really is. The irony about Desveaux is that he believes he is the most objective grader, yet I have never dealt with a more subjective grader at UCLA. His lectures are arid, and unless you find joy in listening to his obscure and erudite references, you too will be absolutely bored. Not one person enjoyed his class. I learned very little, put in loads of work, and recieved a bad grade. If you want to go to DC, please take expo, or at the very least, make sure you have the TA has your grader. A B in Desveux's section would have translated into a solid A- in the TA's section. Too many complaints about the CAPP program to mention. Be warned.
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