All Ratings and Reviews for Michael J Allen


Overall 4.4
Easiness of class 1.7
Workload 1.6
Not Clear
Clarity of professor 4.3
Not Helpful
Helpfulness of professor 4.2
1 of 7


ENGL 90, taken Summer 2019 Submitted Sept. 10, 2019 Grade Received: P

I took ENGL 90 in the summer with Professor Allen & TA Mark Gallagher. As an online course, we had to watch 2-3 video lectures each week about a late-Shakespearean play, plus 1-2 film adaptations of each play. We covered King Lear, Measure for Measure, Antony and Cleopatra, Othello, and The Tempest. There were written one-page essays during Weeks 2-5 on the play being studied. We also had to post on the discussion boards about the play studied each week, and attend weekly discussion section via Zoom which lasted for about an hour each. There is a cumulative final in the end, which can be taken in person or online via ProctorU.

Grades are calculated as follows:
30% - Participation in Live Sections and Written Responses on Discussion Board
10% - Essay 1 (one page) on King Lear
10% - Essay 2 (one page) on Measure for Measure
10% - Essay 3 (one page) on Antony and Cleopatra
10% - Essay 4 (one page) on The Tempest
30% - Final Exam (cumulative)

Participation via discussion board posts and speaking during live sections are graded based on completion. The TA will go over what each student posted on the discussion board and ask for the student to add to his/her paragraphs.
The one-page analysis essays were easy to do, but the TA heavily emphasized following through with deep analysis over surface statements. I got an average of 88.5% on all four essays.
The final exam was difficult. It had 35 short sentence responses, 2 short paragraph summaries, and 2 long essay questions synthesizing the written play and the film adaptations. The short sentence responses ask for very minor details that I overlooked while studying the plays. The summaries were easy to do. The long essay questions were a little bit more challenging since you had to remember the film adaptations as well. I ended up with a 72% on the final, but I had chosen to take this class P/NP, and got a P on my transcript.

Overall, this class has a heavy but doable workload, as long as you are not taking any other classes during the summer session. The written assignments were easy to do and the course is very well-organized. The final might be challenging if you did not study enough or did not watch all of the lecture videos/film adaptations. Mark was a very intelligent TA who pushed us to analyse the text deeper, and the live sections were always engaging.

Course not listed Submitted June 14, 2002 Grade Received: N/A

Professor Allen is a very entertaining lecturer. He's very engaging, and it was wonderful to attend lecture knowing that you were in for a good show. However, this class was pretty difficult. I suppose since it's the first class of the ten series it's supposed to break you in, but there's a lot of reading assigned. And it was really tough for me to keep up. Also papers were pretty hard with the topics, and my TA was not exactly the easiest. Final was pretty hard, too, since there were tons of IDs and three essays to write(!!!). But overall, an enjoyable class as far as lectures go. Just a lot of work, and you'll definitely be humbled in this class. Take this professor and walk out of the final proud that you made it through English 10A.

Course not listed Submitted March 1, 2001 Grade Received: N/A

Allen is an excellent lecturer who frequently has the entire class laughing out loud. Somehow he has found all the sexual innuendoes in all of Middle English and he doesn't hesitate to point out what a toy boy Chaucer must have been. Oh yes, and beware of sitting on the isle - Allen will find some way to integrate you into his lecture whether by asking you a random question or by pretending to hit you. Better stay awake and alert! Otherwise you'll be embarrassed in front of everyone. It's all in good fun though.

Course not listed Submitted March 27, 2002 Grade Received: N/A

I refuse to graduate from UCLA without taking at least one more class with Professor Allen! The man is so incredibly intelligent, witty, and kind that I fought tooth and nail to be enrolled in his wait-listed Canterbury Tales class. He is an amazing professor who knows what he's talking about and manages to make every word interesting and memorable. His lectures were so funny that I constantly wished that I had a tape recorder with me so that I could listen to them over again! Professor Allen is also willing to take the time to chat with you about pretty much anything. I thought his grading and exams were pretty reasonable. He's not easy but he is fair. I highly highly HIGHLY recommend taking him. His classes are fun!

Course not listed Submitted June 25, 2004 Grade Received: N/A

Awesome teacher! Hilarious and intriguing!! But the final is a bitch! The hardest exam I've ever taken. I'm definitely taking him again!

Course not listed Submitted July 2, 2004 Grade Received: N/A

i've never written a review before, but i HAVE to give props to Prof. Allen. This guy is TOO kno when you look at a teacher, and u just think to yourself, "now THIS is a teacher. This is someone who should teach FORVER...teach your kids and your kids' kids." well, u'll say that about Allen. he's freakin great. i regret not goin to his lectures more often (man, the class was at 10-lil too early for my blood) but dun't make my mistake. Spend as much time with him as u can. Dun't trip about the assignments (3 essays), or the final (pretty hard-id's and lotsa essays)- just take his class for HIM. u won't regret it.

Course not listed Submitted Feb. 28, 2001 Grade Received: N/A

Allen's exams are a little tough but if you study hard you'll do well. The papers are standard and graded by TA. But the best thing about Prof. Allen is his lecture. He is one of the best English lecturers in the dept., especially Shakespeare, his forte, plus other medieval and renaissance period literature, which can be quite harrowing if you have the wrong professor because the subject matter is not always the best. If you're tired of professors who suffer from windbaggery as I like to call it, then take Allen, a truly inspiring and entertaining speaker who knows his stuff and knows how to teach.

Course not listed Submitted April 10, 2002 Grade Received: N/A

I absolutely loved Dr. Allen! He made Shakespeare and Milton seem like they were the easiest and most interesting writers ever. Dr. Allen teaches with a passion for the material and invokes a want of learning of the material in the students. The TA's grade the papers, but he does make up some difficult topics for the papers. The final consisted of ID's and essays, which require a lot of studying and a clear understanding of the material, but if you've been reading all the material, then it should not be too difficult.Otherwise, i would definetly recommend everyone to take his class.

Course not listed Submitted Nov. 8, 2003 Grade Received: N/A

I will take any class he offers. If you go through UCLA without doing the same, you are missing out. Forget the grades. Forget the work. Just take his class because he is an incredible professor.

Course not listed Submitted March 3, 2001 Grade Received: N/A

Allen's a great teacher. He's so animated in class and explains the subjects well. The tests are objective questions and essays. The TA assigns some papers, too.

1 of 7

Report Review

Did this review contain...

There are errors in the report form.

Thank you for the report!

We'll look into this shortly.

It seems like you’re

using an ad blocker. :(

Bruinwalk is an entirely Daily Bruin-run service brought to you for free. We hate annoying ads just as much as you do, but they help keep our lights on. We promise to keep our ads as relevant for you as possible, so please consider disabling your ad-blocking software while using this site.

Thank you for supporting us!