All Ratings and Reviews for Jessica Cattelino
The essays for this class were pretty difficult. They require a lot of analysis and social interpretation, and your grade heavily depends on how strict your TA is. If you are good at reading between the lines and developing complex ideas and arguments, this class is for you. If you are looking for an easy GE like I did, don't take this class.
This class material and Professor Cattelino's lectures are quite engaging. I enjoyed the assigned readings, which is why I didn't mind the depth and overall length of them. If you do not enjoy this material, however, you WILL struggle. The weekly assigned readings have to be understood quite well because participation in the discussion sessions are graded and the essays are graded a little harshly depending on the TA.
Do not take this class for a GE unless there is really nothing better open. Save ur social analysis for a different quarter. The readings can be interesting but honestly, the essays are really difficult to grasp. I consistently got a low B on the essays and a C on the midterm. Even with a 96 in the class and 100% participation, I ended up with a B+. It was an annoying class, worst grade so far at UCLA.
This review may be biased, as I was not a fan of anthropology as a subject, but I found Professor Cattelino's lectures to be a bit dry and my TA really screwed me as far as grading goes. The readings aren't really necessary, except for the ones you have to cover in your essays, and the midterm and final are super easy if you attend lecture and take notes.
Do not take this class. Not only is it extremely boring, but the TA actually screwed my grade. The class is 2 essays, a midterm, a final and participation in discussion. Both of my essays were handed back to me with 0 marks from my TA on the essay and the rubric as she gave me a 70. When I asked why I got that grade she had no reasons. The TA makes a huge impact in your grade and for the amount of weekly readings you are required to do, the class is simply not worth it. Just honestly, don't take the class.
Her lectures were a bit boring at times but you'll learn important concepts that are applicable to every day life. Would definitely recommend this class.
There are readings due each week that you'll go over in section (mandatory) and it's a bit difficult to keep up with it at times. Homework-wise however, you only have to write one reading question based on one of the readings and it's pretty easy to BS it if you need to.
Her exams are based off her lectures and general concepts in the readings.
There are also two essays (and for each there are two prompts that you can choose from): one where you tie in a reading with other articles/songs and another where you have to engage in your own ethnographic fieldwork. Get help from the undergraduate writing center!
This class was very interesting and Prof Cattelino gave very engaging lectures. This class included two papers and the midterm (50 multiple choice) and final (Multiple choice and short and long answer questions) as well as a lot of reading assignments in between that. This class had long assigned readings and many. These readings were pretty much the basis of the class and you needed to know them well for the tests and papers. Cattelino's slides were very descriptive and if you missed a lecture you could usually easily catch up with the posted slides. It was just very important to stay on top of the readings and attend lecture and discussion. If you do this you can do really well on the papers and tests, especially the tests because they are very straight forward on asking about the readings and concepts learned in lectures.
Hands down the worst anthro class I've taken at UCLA to date. It's not really Professor Cattelino's fault, but the material is mind-numbingly boring, mostly because it all seemed like common sense, but to be fair I've studied sociocultural anthro a lot before, and my TA (Bianca Romagnoli) was incredibly incompetent. I had students coming to me for help instead of the TA because of how unapproachable and unclear she was because it was mostly freshman and I'm a junior. Not only that, I walked out of every discussion section more confused than I walked in. She clearly had no idea what the readings were saying because she just listed off what the professor had said and had no response to most of our questions.
There are two papers (40% in total), a midterm (20%) and a final (25%), plus participation grade (15%). But don't think you can know the material and get a good grade. I've gotten As in graduate-level sociocultural anthro courses and still ended up with a B in the class because of my TA. I emailed her like 10 times and received a response twice. The only reason I got a B is because I literally aced the midterm and final, and because my professor slightly boosted the grade of one of my papers. The saddest part is, I brought my paper to a different TA (because mine refused to ever answer my emails) and was told it looked fine, so simply having a different TA would've entirely altered my grade.
Long story short, the material isn't particularly interesting, your grade isn't based on mastery of course material but rather the whims of your TA, and despite how kind and approachable Professor Cattelino is, the size of the class makes it impossible to create a meaningful connection with her as a professor. I highly recommend NOT taking this class as a GE, and if you have to for major/minor requirements, be very very wary of your TA and good luck.
Coming back 2 years later just to be extra sure to give a huge shout out to Bianca Romagnoli for being the worst TA, no actually make that educator in general, I have ever had the displeasure of being in a classroom with. Not only was she unprofessional, unhelpful, and uninterested, but she decided that since she was from Canada she was well within her rights to grade all our papers on a Canadian scale (ie 70s for a B). I held back in my original review wondering if maybe I overreacted to how legitimately terrible she was, but after 4 years at UCLA and 16 years in schooling in general, I can honestly say she is the most awful teacher I have ever come across. I’ve had bad TAs before, but all understandably so & eager to get better and just learning the position, none so absolutely terrible & closed off to suggestions or offering any help that I’ve constantly thought back every quarter to how inept they were. It’s two years later and I still wince every time I think back to those discussions. I don’t know if she’ll ever TA this course again but if you come across this review and see her as a TA for a different course AVOID AT ALL COSTS.
First class I took at UCLA. Tons of reading. Although it is really interesting, it is so much and you have to read it because you discuss it in discussion (that are mandatory). Subject area is super interesting. Half of the class is about old civilizations and the second half is all modern. No text book, but articles and books about different people groups. Two essays that are graded pretty hard and a midterm and final that has multiple choice and short answer. A lot of information to grasp and she makes you think in a way that I was not used to. Interesting class, but would not take if you are looking for an easy GE.
Cattelino is a good professor compared to most GE professors. She is very nice and willing to help. The class is pretty straightforward and easy... exams were easy and I scored As on them without much work. The essays were the most difficult part... talk to your TAs about your ideas beforehand to make sure you are on the right track. Overall, a good, interesting, and fairly easy course.
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