U.S., Civil War and Reconstruction

Joan Waugh

U.S., Civil War and Reconstruction

History department

Joan Waugh

Add Review
from 21 users

Ratings

Bad
Overall 4.2
Good
Hard
Easiness of class 2.7
Easy
Heavy
Workload 2.3
Light
Not Clear
Clarity of professor 4.2
Clear
Not Helpful
Helpfulness of professor 4.1
Helpful
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Tags

  • Uses Slides
  • Engaging Lectures
  • Useful Textbooks
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
  • Often Funny
  • Needs Textbook
  • Snazzy Dresser
  • Would Take Again

Grades

Winter 2017
27.0%
22.5%
18.0%
13.5%
9.0%
4.5%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

Winter 2016
22.2%
18.5%
14.8%
11.1%
7.4%
3.7%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

Winter 2010
31.3%
26.1%
20.9%
15.7%
10.4%
5.2%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

Spring 2006
20.4%
17.0%
13.6%
10.2%
6.8%
3.4%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

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Reviews

Quarter Taken: Winter 2018 Submitted June 15, 2018 Grade Received: B+

I have taken Professor Waugh twice. She is my favorite professor at UCLA to date. Her Civil War and Gilded Age classes demand a lot of reading, class attendance and keeping of very accurate notes. But she gives you what you need to get the job done. Her grading is tough. I am an A student who has not gotten better than a B+ from her, but I would take her class again in a heartbeat. History majors, minors or fans of US History should not miss the chance to study with her. Be prepared and work a little harder, you can rest on your laurels in another class!

Quarter Taken: Winter 2018 Submitted June 8, 2018 Grade Received: C

Harsh grader, one and only C of my entire life.
Would avoid if you care about GPA

Quarter Taken: Spring 2017 Submitted May 2, 2018 Grade Received: B+

Professor Waugh is great, great, great!!!! She is passionate about the subject she teaches and it comes across in her lectures. If you do not get a good grade in her classes you as a student just did not put in the time to study. I have taken her 3 times. The Gilded Age and 1875 to 1900. I'm also taking her for a 199 contract course. I wish all of my professors were like her!!!!! UCLA and the students are lucky to have her!!!!

Quarter Taken: Winter 2016 Submitted Dec. 25, 2017 Grade Received: A

Professor Waugh is one of the best instructors at UCLA, and she brings the subject to life like few professors that I've previously had. I was pretty familiar with the Civil War already, but I learned plenty of new things. Her lectures are carefully crafted and honed so that they are both clear and concise, much like the required text that she co-wrote. The class website is full of reference material that is useful for the 2 quizzes and the 2 final papers (5 pages each). A must-take if you have even a passing interest in the Civil War.

Quarter Taken: Winter 2017 Submitted March 31, 2017 Grade Received: A

Prof Waugh is EXTREMELY knowledgable about the Civil War and it shows in her lectures -- they are well-organized and intriguing. Her website is another huge plus of the class, as it provides many interesting sources and is also very helpful when writing the paper/take-home final. In all honesty I didn't read the books and that was fine, because the two quizzes are very easy and you can mostly just study for them from your lecture notes (you should attend lecture if possible!). The movie paper did take a while and the take-home final (2 five-page essays in five days) was a little tough, but all in all this was a great class and I would recommend it as the workload was light and Prof Waugh is engaging and helpful if you ask.

Quarter Taken: Winter 2015 Submitted Feb. 13, 2016 Grade Received: A

One of the most helpful professors at UCLA. She tells you exactly what she expects which can be a lot compared to other classes. Lots of reading is assigned, an essay, simple ID quizes and a take home exam. However if you go to her office hours she will guide you in the right direction. You must do the reading for this class.This isn't one of those classes you can get away with not reading. Her lecture can get a bit dry but that's only because of the topic. I recommend taking her especially if your are a history major. She is very passionate about history and willing to help students.

Quarter Taken: N/A Submitted March 15, 2013 Grade Received: N/A

Definitely an good class if you are interested in the subject. Waugh is organized, yet her lectures are sometimes convoluted, but I've experienced worse amongst UCLA history profs. The movie paper is a lot more challenging than it seems and she grades fairly hard. Other than that, a good option for upper divs for history majors interested in the time period.

Quarter Taken: N/A Submitted March 31, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

I feel ambivalent about Professor Waugh. I understand where both the positive and negative critiques are coming from. It's true that she's an engaging lecturer and also true that she can be painfully boring— depends on what interests you about the Civil War. For me, the battle lectures were the most excruciating; other people couldn't get enough of them. It's true that she can be sweet and helpful, but I also had experiences with her when she was rude and unresponsive. I don't think she likes it when students show up to office hours the week the paper is due with little more than a thesis— she expects a draft at that point and disdains undergrad procrastination, so she's absolutely no help in that moment. Yet, if you randomly shoot her a question (preferably an analytical one) about the material via email, she's very happy to answer. She's also more responsive and friendly in office hours on an off-week (i.e. not right before the midterm or final). Finally, it's true that her class is simultaneously really easy and really hard. First, the quizzes are the EASIEST and most generous 20% offered by any professor at UCLA. I had tougher quizzes in grade school, and it's frankly depressing if you got anything less than an 8 out of 10. On the other hand, DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE MOVIE PAPER. Sure, it seems easy. Watch a good movie like Glory or Gone with the Wind or Cold Mountain, write a paper. It is actually very difficult, and unless you want to agonize for three straight days and finish it up in an all-nighter like I did, get a head start. Watch the movie three weeks before the paper is due, and then start it immediately. I'm serious. The final papers (only three pages each) are easier and can be completed in a day. She really only gave us four days for those anyways (assigned the topics Thursday, and they were due Monday). Finally, the readings are enjoyable and accessible, especially Waugh's own book U.S. Grant (except save your initial good impression of the book and your time— don't read the last two chapters, which are essentially about nothing).

Ultimately, I think the good outweighs the bad with Waugh. She's very knowledgable about Civil War history. The website she made for 139A is FANTASTIC- no need to consult wikipedia for this class. And she is very organized and clear about her expectations. She gives you all the tools you need to get an A; it's up to you to put in the work.

Quarter Taken: N/A Submitted March 19, 2012 Grade Received: N/A

While her class may seem low maintenance and relatively easy in the beginning, do not let this influence the way you think she will grade - she grades HARD. I am a senior with one quarter left to graduate and received my first C+ ever on the midterm essay that I turned in for her class. That being said, she is incredibly enthusiastic about the subject and is very helpful when it comes to the paper writing. She will always have a discussion forum allowing you to ask questions and will usually respond to your questions within hours and always on the same day. You will undoubtedly learn a great deal but do not expect an easy A or even an easy B for that matter...

Quarter Taken: N/A Submitted March 24, 2009 Grade Received: N/A

Great professor. One of my favorite history professors at UCLA (I've taken quite a few: Ruiz, Woods, Yeager, Gantner, et al.) Basically, her 139A class is: 35% paper, 35% final, and 30% midterm. Studying for the midterm was annoying: there were 50 terms to study and we were given 2 weeks to prepare with a study guide list. 10 terms would appear on the exam. You couldn't eliminate 5 terms per se since the exam was divided into 2 sections. As for the final, I disagree with the user below: she made it very clear that it would be an essays exam. And she made note that the exam would be based on the three questions involving the civil war, as posed during the first lecture. Truly, it was NOT surprising that the final essay was based on why the Union won the war and what were its effects on Reconstruction (for instance, she devoted a select number of lectures for the latter event).

In order to do well in 139A do the following:
1) Go to every lecture and make IDs as you go along. For example, the names of all the battles, names of individuals from the online readings, general concepts such as 'slavery' or 'anti-slavery', etc... in order to prepare for the midterm.
2) Frame arguments around the three questions posed at the beginning, in order to prepare your final. You WILL answer questions relating to the causes of the war, the reason why the war won, and the effects of reconstruction. I don't see why she would change this format in future classes...

Yes, you should the books. You can probably get away with skimming it but you will need them towards the end of the course for the study guide. For example, 1 week before the final exam, she gave us the guide with 11 questions. Two of the questions referred to the particular experiences of soldiers in one book and the other was based on the arguments of one author regarding the demographics involved as a result of the Sherman campaign.

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Tags

  • Uses Slides
  • Engaging Lectures
  • Useful Textbooks
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
  • Often Funny
  • Needs Textbook
  • Snazzy Dresser
  • Would Take Again
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