Based on 15 Users
Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.
You can't skip classes. She takes attendance and it counts. Her assignments make you think. The journals are easy but you have to follow her directions. She writes alot of comments on the big papers and has you rewrite them.
Other students said she's fair. They said she has transexualism for a topic since no one knows alot about it.
She is an overall ok teacher. The readings are fine, not to long and pretty easy to comprehend. We did not really discuss our opinions on the readings much so don't expect to talk about your reaction to the article. She grades slightly hard. I went to her office hours before my final drafts were due and that helped a lot. Overall, she is not terrible, but can be pretty dry sometimes. Very nice person though.
she is extremely liberal. if you express an opinion that is not as liberal as hers, or in any way centrist or conservative, she will not like you. I am a very matter of fact person, she did not like that. I would say she's probably not the brightest english teacher I've had, she had a lot of trouble understand what I consider to be very basic ideas
Dvorak isn't the friendliest teacher and is rather cold/impersonal at times, but her class is pretty interesting and not too difficult. You usually get a few assigned readings for each class and sometimes, you're asked to write a journal response. The readings are pretty interesting, and there is a lot of time for discussion in class. Some people would skim the readings two minutes before class started. There are four essays throughout the quarter, but they are not too bad since she gives you a good amount of time and marks up your rough draft like crazy. Go to her office hours before you write your final draft of the essays.
Dvorak focuses on gender identity / transsexualism, so don't be surprised when you watch Ma Vie En Rose or Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Although it is a bit weird at first, I've got to say that this was by far more interesting than typical english topics. The "scholarly articles" about gender are very difficult to understand though, and it was a drag reading them because i had to read it over and over. even then, i still didn't understand it. Other than that, the class was pretty good.
Dvorak was NEVER helpful or encouraging to her students like any normal professor would. She felt that if you had not acquired writing skills in your high school past, then that was YOUR problem and not hers. This was very stressful because you would expect a professor to HELP you after you constantly ASK for help and suggestions and opportunities to improve your writing, but instead you would get a bad grade and comments implying you were a dumb ass for writing what you wrote. Of course this was after you constantly went to her office hours to address your problems and all she could say was that she couldn't just GIVE you the answer that you had to FIGURE it out on your own. To me this was outrageous, especially because it was English comp 3, the class that is suppose to prepare you for college writing, meaning you're suppose to learn and get a lot out of it! Not be put down and shunned for "not getting it."
Okay, so she may be a little wacky, and overly opinionated, and blatantly liberal...
But in terms of teaching, she's awesome. Her class is relatively easy, covers interesting topics, watches interesting movies, and has a lot of discussion time about the readings--which are easy and entertaining as well.
One thing to be aware of before taking her English Comp 3 class is that her main "theme" for the class is transsexualism/gender identity disorder. Of course, we did tons of readings/discussion on other topics (such as, "Should the military draft be reinstated?"), but we also watched "Ma Vie En Rose" and "Hedwig and the Angry Inch." At first I was a little weirded out by her fascination with transsexualism/GID, but it's much better than having the boring, overused topics like "The American Dream."
Dvorak is pretty out there, but I feel like my writing has improved since I started her class, and I really liked the reader that we used. We only write 4 major essays in the quarter.
Take her if you can, but if you are really conservative and outspoken, prepare yourself to be challenged. Dvorak is readily available through email and office hours, is a pretty fair grader, and as long as you don't B.S. your way through this class, she'll really like you--and you'll like her.