All Ratings and Reviews for Jeannie Barber-Choi
My experience taking this class with Dr. Barber-Choi is by far the worst of all my lectures and classes I've taken at UCLA. Although it is true that class is not very difficult, it is not worth the trouble because Dr. Barber-Choi has little regard for her students, does not plan assignments well, does not take her job seriously, and lacks professionalism.
1. Dr. Barber-Choi does not respect the time and efforts of her students. She is almost always late to class and makes her students wait upwards to 10 minutes outside the lecture room. She never explains nor apologizes, and does not make an effort to be prompt. Because of this, we waste valuable class time in which are we are forced to make up by regularly meeting with her outside of class weekly. She does not consider how much valuable time she wastes and its extremely disrespectful.
2. She does not create or plan assignments well. She never plans out an agenda and wastes class time focusing on one or two groups. There have been many instances where there is nothing to do for whole class periods. There have also been many instances where when we do complete work, she wastes our time because she revises the assignment after the fact. Because of this, her students suffer the consequences of her lack of foresight and planning. There have been numerous times where our work has been undone because she changes her mind about details.
3. She does not take her job seriously. She comments about how she does not have time for the class because she is focusing on her family and her other "real job". She always comes late and she doesn't care about our experience in assignments.
I will describe a defining example of these weaknesses. She made an extra credit assignment to teach a science project at a local high school event. She promised that anyone who helped on a project would receive extra credit, regardless if they could attend. So I went out and purchased materials for my group's project, brought materials from my lab, and helped coordinate the logistics for the the project. After the event, she asked me to meet her before class to discuss my participation. She explained that she did not have the foresight to predict that I would not be "learning to communicate science" and that I therefore would receive 0 points. Although it us true that I learned very little, she went back on her word AFTER I had committed to the project and AFTER the event. I expressed that I had already spent money and time on the project and that it was not fair for me to be punished because she did not plan the assignment carefully. She proceeded to lecture me on how to manage finances and how I should not be committing to projects if I am not comfortable spending my time and money. The way that she communicated to me was condescending and rude. I have never felt so disrespected and disregarded from a faculty member at UCLA except from Dr. Barber-Choi. I felt that my time and money was trivialized and that I was punished because of her weakness in class planning. This is not only unacceptable, but it is unethical, especially for a professional.
These weaknesses stem from her experiences working with younger students (high school, middle school). She treats her UCLA college educated students as such, and it's frankly belittling to be treated like how she treated our class this quarter. I would not recommend any of my peers to take her class and I hope that this criticism prevents future students from feeling like this ever again, even if its a free A.
First thing's first, this class is easy and if you do the bare minimum, you will probably get an A.
HOWEVER. Barber-Choi is the #1 worst professor I've ever had at UCLA. Read on if you want an explanation.
She is constantly late to class, and does not care about teaching. This class is a joke and basically a waste of 10 weeks. You are making a 5 minute science documentary. She lets you "choose" a topic but she actually assigns you a topic that she wants to be made. Barber-Choi constantly refers to teaching as her "side job," saying stuff like "Sorry I don't help you guys more, I am busy with my REAL JOB."
Despite the fact that you don't do anything in lecture, she will constantly demand your group set up appointments outside of class with her, on weekends and such. Why? Honestly, who knows?
Barber-Choi is INSANE. She seems like a really nice person, but she will screw you over if she doesn't like you for whatever reason.
In class we had an extra credit assignment. It was setting up a stand at an elementary school science fair on the weekend. Although it was "mandatory," she basically forced us into groups to work on the stands.
Some of us could not go since it was the weekend, but Barber-Choi told us if we contributed money and supplies to the project we'd still receive extra credit.
A friend of mine contributed a lot of time and money to the project. After he asked for extra credit like she promised, she sent him a really long angry email about how he didn't deserve extra credit. She demanded he come in before class to speak to her.
She basically told him that even though she promised extra credit for people who contributed money and supplies, she was wrong. He said he spent his hard-earned money on this class, and she told him he needs to be wiser with his money in the future.
TLDR: This class is easy and you will get to watch Netflix in class and scramble to make a science documentary in the last 2 weeks. However, Barber-Choi is BONKERS and may turn on you. Is it worth it to you? Your decision!
One of my favorite classes at UCLA! Dr. Barber-Choi is a fantastic educator who is passionate about teaching science and equipping her students with the tools/knowledge/confidence to engage with individuals who do not have a science background. She is more than willing to work with students to help them achieve their goals. I strongly recommend taking her class if you have the chance to do so.
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