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loved the class! it's based on lectures from other professors, scholars etc. there were 3 papers, no midterm and no final. the first paper was 5 pages long, the 2nd one was 7 and the last one 12-15. 40% of the grade was from the discussion so it's crucial to attend and participate! if you're ready for it, great class and you learn so much.
Great class, the lectures were awesome, the homework assignments were captivating. The reading was also very interesting. This class however also depends on your T.A. but from those whom i spoke to everyone loved the class and thought it was fairly easy. HIGHLY recommended.
Easy course. Very straight forward. His lectures were videos of other political scholars giving lectures. Nice to have a different kind of class. The TAs were good. No midterm and no final. 2 papers and 1 final research paper. Enjoyable. Not hard to get an A. Work with your TA. I highly recommend the class. I heard the prof's other classes were not as good. But this one was great!
I LOVED this course! He really makes you think outside the box and question your sources and what people tell you... I'm taking 138B this quarter as well and he's a fantastic professor! I definitely recommend him to everyone.
TAKE THIS CLASS! your grade is based entirely on your T.A. so pray you don't get one that sucks. James Lo is a good T.A. so if you get him as you T.A. you'll be fine. As for the class itself there is not reason to show up, ever..... he posts the videos on line and if for some reason you wanted to watch it you can do so in the comfort of your room.
Prof. Trachtenberg loves his material, is enthusiastic about it and loves to help students... Students who are dumb and simply follow his instructions without seeking any form of intellectual exploration will do FANTASTIC in this course. Prof. Trachtenberg is a zionist and do not ever, ever dare conflict with his views in any paper that he grades. He will make a very mediocre excuse for not even reading your paper and decide to deny you of your deserved grade. This has happened to 2 other schoolmates of mine. We took his class in different quarters. Anyways, I complained to the department chair, but they couldn't do anything.
Its simple: keep your head low, be part of the flock, don't think outside of the box, analyze only what he asks you to analyze and NOTHING else; and you will do perfectly fine.
Intellectual growth comes from analyzing all aspects of a given conflict/situation, NOT ONLY by regurgitating what the professor teaches. Thus I suggest all passionate political science students to never enroll in his classes that require a paper.