John S Langdon
Department of History
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4.4
Overall Rating
Based on 13 Users
Easiness 1.8 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.4 / 5 How clear the professor is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 1.9 / 5 How light the workload is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 4.6 / 5 How helpful the professor is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Engaging Lectures
  • Useful Textbooks
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
  • Often Funny
  • Tough Tests
  • Would Take Again
  • Needs Textbook

GRADE DISTRIBUTIONS

32.7%
27.2%
21.8%
16.3%
10.9%
5.4%
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.

27.6%
23.0%
18.4%
13.8%
9.2%
4.6%
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.

28.6%
23.8%
19.0%
14.3%
9.5%
4.8%
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.

18.6%
15.5%
12.4%
9.3%
6.2%
3.1%
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.

30.6%
25.5%
20.4%
15.3%
10.2%
5.1%
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.

23.3%
19.4%
15.6%
11.7%
7.8%
3.9%
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 (7)

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Quarter: Spring 2020
Grade: A
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
June 25, 2020

This is by far the greatest class I've taken at UCLA. Professor Langdon is a phenomenal professor who really cares about his students and wants us to come away from the class with as much knowledge as possible. I took him online, and his Zoom lectures were always really engaging, and he always stayed an hour after the lecture to clarify any questions and give insight on the midterm and final. If you participate a lot, he'll take that into consideration when submitting final grades.

I will say, if you want to take this class just to fill your schedule or get the easy A, this isn't the class for you. The readings are easy, but if you aren't on top of your work, they can become overwhelming very quickly. If you put your full effort into this class, though, it will be the most rewarding one you ever take at UCLA.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Spring 2020
Grade: A
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
June 19, 2020

This is by no means an "easy" class. But "easy" is what u make of it to be honest. If u do all there assigned readings, attend all the lectures, and stick around for as many office hours as u can, this should be an easy class. Doc Langdon is very supportive students. While the class involves a lot of studying and reading, he really cares about his students and as long as u do your part as a student, he will be supportive. He really takes into consideration the amount of effort u put into the class, so take the readings and lectures SERIOUSLY.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2018
Grade: NR
June 19, 2018

Langdon is a very interesting and quirky professor. He tries his best to make his lectures engaging and stand out to his students, but that is also a detriment to him. A portion on both his midterm and final are drawn from his eccentric wording from his lectures and so if you do not go and recognize the wording on his questions, you will be very confused. Also, this course is based on nearly 800 years of history that is extremely specific and his workload reflects this. If you want an easy class, or even a medium-level class, do not take this. Even completing all of the readings and going to all the lectures will not help you that much due to the sheer amount of knowledge you will be expected to know from this professor. And concerning the optional midterm, you won’t really need to take it; just know that the final is worth 100% of your grade and it is possible to study all of the midterm material before the final, it will just be extremely difficult.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2017
Grade: P
Nov. 29, 2017

Prof Langdon is an amazing professor who puts in an incredible amount of time and effort into the course. This class was, for me, very difficult if you don't have a background in any sort of Byzantine history as the terms can be difficult to catch in lecture. Completely recommend.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Spring 2016
Grade: A
June 27, 2016

History 114B was one of the best classes I've taken at UCLA. This is exemplary of what all history classes should be like. Langdon manages to simultaneously balance chronology and interesting minutiae with broader course-spanning themes that unite the material into a cohesive and engaging narrative. The cycle of decline and resurgence of the last remnants of ancient Rome through the middle ages and into the dawn of the early modern period was told with incredible clarity and what can only be described as an inexorable sadness as Langdon approached the inevitable fall of Constantinople in 1453. If you really get into this course, do all the primary source readings, and go in to talk to Langdon during office hours, then it is nearly impossible to come out of it without a profound fascination with the thousand-year story of Byzantium.

That being said, this course is a lot of work. Expect an average of 150 pages of reading per week, sometimes more, particularly when he assigns the entirety of Psellus and The Alexiad. Grading is based upon an optional midterm and the final exam, which both consist of IDs, a "historical paragraph", and one or two essays on the comprehensive themes of the course. You will have to be well-versed in both the broad themes and the specific details, and I would certainly recommend taking both, if you don't want your entire grade to rest on the final exam. Don't underestimate the exams; Langdon is a really nice and approachable professor, but he is no pushover when it comes to mastering the material. In terms of grading, it seems a large proportion of students get As but I think I can attribute this to the huge amount of engagement that Langdon inspires in students, rather than to the course's innate difficulty. This is a hard course, make no mistake.

If you love the study of history, take this course. As a person whose knowledge of Byzantium covered only Justinian, the Fourth Crusade, and the Fall in 1453, I came out of this class confident in an area of history in which I had little experience. The readings are also incredibly engaging and well-chosen, particularly the culminating work by Runciman detailing the fall of Constantinople.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
March 21, 2009

Take any class with Langdon! If you're looking for an easy A, then Langdon is not for you. However, if you are serious about your education and learning Byzantine history, then take Langdon. He is a very concerned professor who understands the plight of students and will help you whenever he can! His class consists of a midterm and a final in which the midterm is optional. Even though it's tempting, I would recommend not skipping the midterm because the material is comprehensive, and you will be too overwelmed if you decide to let your entire grade rest on the final exam. Overall, as a history major I def enjoyed Byzantine with Langdon. Take him for a fun and memorable experience.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
Nov. 7, 2007

Professor Langdon is very clear about the topics for his midterm and final, however he does not give any specific study guides for them. He does hand out words/lecture notes at the beginning of lecture, but unless you are willing to sift through over 80 names and places for each lecture, just focus on what he tells you are the main themes for the class (which he will repeatedly state). He is extremely enthusiastic about the topic, which is not boring in itself, however he'll throw so much information at you that you may not know what's important. He is refreshing in his energy, but intimidating in the way he presents information during lecture. I missed out on the midterm (which was optional), took the final for 100% of my grade, didn't follow the instructions, e-mailed him about it, and got a B in the class. Either an extremely caring and lenient professor, or I got amazingly lucky. Recommended if you are interested in the subject at all and willing to do a fair amount of reading.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Quarter: Spring 2020
Grade: A
June 25, 2020

This is by far the greatest class I've taken at UCLA. Professor Langdon is a phenomenal professor who really cares about his students and wants us to come away from the class with as much knowledge as possible. I took him online, and his Zoom lectures were always really engaging, and he always stayed an hour after the lecture to clarify any questions and give insight on the midterm and final. If you participate a lot, he'll take that into consideration when submitting final grades.

I will say, if you want to take this class just to fill your schedule or get the easy A, this isn't the class for you. The readings are easy, but if you aren't on top of your work, they can become overwhelming very quickly. If you put your full effort into this class, though, it will be the most rewarding one you ever take at UCLA.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Quarter: Spring 2020
Grade: A
June 19, 2020

This is by no means an "easy" class. But "easy" is what u make of it to be honest. If u do all there assigned readings, attend all the lectures, and stick around for as many office hours as u can, this should be an easy class. Doc Langdon is very supportive students. While the class involves a lot of studying and reading, he really cares about his students and as long as u do your part as a student, he will be supportive. He really takes into consideration the amount of effort u put into the class, so take the readings and lectures SERIOUSLY.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2018
Grade: NR
June 19, 2018

Langdon is a very interesting and quirky professor. He tries his best to make his lectures engaging and stand out to his students, but that is also a detriment to him. A portion on both his midterm and final are drawn from his eccentric wording from his lectures and so if you do not go and recognize the wording on his questions, you will be very confused. Also, this course is based on nearly 800 years of history that is extremely specific and his workload reflects this. If you want an easy class, or even a medium-level class, do not take this. Even completing all of the readings and going to all the lectures will not help you that much due to the sheer amount of knowledge you will be expected to know from this professor. And concerning the optional midterm, you won’t really need to take it; just know that the final is worth 100% of your grade and it is possible to study all of the midterm material before the final, it will just be extremely difficult.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2017
Grade: P
Nov. 29, 2017

Prof Langdon is an amazing professor who puts in an incredible amount of time and effort into the course. This class was, for me, very difficult if you don't have a background in any sort of Byzantine history as the terms can be difficult to catch in lecture. Completely recommend.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2016
Grade: A
June 27, 2016

History 114B was one of the best classes I've taken at UCLA. This is exemplary of what all history classes should be like. Langdon manages to simultaneously balance chronology and interesting minutiae with broader course-spanning themes that unite the material into a cohesive and engaging narrative. The cycle of decline and resurgence of the last remnants of ancient Rome through the middle ages and into the dawn of the early modern period was told with incredible clarity and what can only be described as an inexorable sadness as Langdon approached the inevitable fall of Constantinople in 1453. If you really get into this course, do all the primary source readings, and go in to talk to Langdon during office hours, then it is nearly impossible to come out of it without a profound fascination with the thousand-year story of Byzantium.

That being said, this course is a lot of work. Expect an average of 150 pages of reading per week, sometimes more, particularly when he assigns the entirety of Psellus and The Alexiad. Grading is based upon an optional midterm and the final exam, which both consist of IDs, a "historical paragraph", and one or two essays on the comprehensive themes of the course. You will have to be well-versed in both the broad themes and the specific details, and I would certainly recommend taking both, if you don't want your entire grade to rest on the final exam. Don't underestimate the exams; Langdon is a really nice and approachable professor, but he is no pushover when it comes to mastering the material. In terms of grading, it seems a large proportion of students get As but I think I can attribute this to the huge amount of engagement that Langdon inspires in students, rather than to the course's innate difficulty. This is a hard course, make no mistake.

If you love the study of history, take this course. As a person whose knowledge of Byzantium covered only Justinian, the Fourth Crusade, and the Fall in 1453, I came out of this class confident in an area of history in which I had little experience. The readings are also incredibly engaging and well-chosen, particularly the culminating work by Runciman detailing the fall of Constantinople.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
March 21, 2009

Take any class with Langdon! If you're looking for an easy A, then Langdon is not for you. However, if you are serious about your education and learning Byzantine history, then take Langdon. He is a very concerned professor who understands the plight of students and will help you whenever he can! His class consists of a midterm and a final in which the midterm is optional. Even though it's tempting, I would recommend not skipping the midterm because the material is comprehensive, and you will be too overwelmed if you decide to let your entire grade rest on the final exam. Overall, as a history major I def enjoyed Byzantine with Langdon. Take him for a fun and memorable experience.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
Nov. 7, 2007

Professor Langdon is very clear about the topics for his midterm and final, however he does not give any specific study guides for them. He does hand out words/lecture notes at the beginning of lecture, but unless you are willing to sift through over 80 names and places for each lecture, just focus on what he tells you are the main themes for the class (which he will repeatedly state). He is extremely enthusiastic about the topic, which is not boring in itself, however he'll throw so much information at you that you may not know what's important. He is refreshing in his energy, but intimidating in the way he presents information during lecture. I missed out on the midterm (which was optional), took the final for 100% of my grade, didn't follow the instructions, e-mailed him about it, and got a B in the class. Either an extremely caring and lenient professor, or I got amazingly lucky. Recommended if you are interested in the subject at all and willing to do a fair amount of reading.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
1 of 1
4.4
Overall Rating
Based on 13 Users
Easiness 1.8 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.4 / 5 How clear the professor is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 1.9 / 5 How light the workload is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 4.6 / 5 How helpful the professor is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Engaging Lectures
    (4)
  • Useful Textbooks
    (4)
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
    (4)
  • Often Funny
    (4)
  • Tough Tests
    (4)
  • Would Take Again
    (5)
  • Needs Textbook
    (2)
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