Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.
Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.
Finally someone else is going to be teaching this class, because I know what a b...h Hobbs is. The new profs name is kabassian, I am hopeful. And if he doesn't live up to my expectations, I can always drop, as of this year CS 101 is not a core requirement anymore!!
This class involves reading Supreme Court Rulings on free speech. Yes, they are actual Supreme Court documents, and thus are highly confusing and tough to slog through. Your TAs in discussion sections will be indispensable in deciphering these texts. Midterm and Final both require you to apply these "tests" you learn to hypothetical cases, where you argue whether or not something counts as defamation, obscenity, is protected speech, etc. Yes, you will actually have to use your brain in this class to analyze and make a coherent arguments.
Personally, I found the lectures to be boring. Hobbs introduces the new cases for the first half of class. After the break, she repeats the material from the previous week. Very repetitive, especially considering the most important parts are the tests, which all get adequately explained in the 50 minute discussion sections. I actually felt I learned something valuable, as learning the limits of free speech is actually interesting, and may hold some practical value. However, the lecture itself is dry and monotonous.
I absolutely loved this class. It is, as she will tell you on the first day, run like a first year law course. Your course reader is simply copies of the full legal cases. It takes you a couple of weeks of reading it slowly and with great confusion before you start to "speak the language". After that, it's easy to know what you're looking for and, needles to say, they go much more quickly. That being said, each case with either produce a test to use as precedence in similar cases or it will exemplify one of these tests in action. You should know these tests backwards and forwards. The only two things controlling your grade are the midterm and final, where you will be given 5 or 6 essays (3 long, and the rest short) to write on hypothetical issues. BE LOGICAL IN APPROACHING THESE. Many will claim that the TAs were unfairly biased against certain opinions, but that is not the case at all. You'll want to go very carefully through each step, considering the facts before you, making only inferences that you can support (e.g. do not shoot out some discriminatory statement about the group of people involved and then expect them to just accept it without further explanation). Lastly, in your preparing for these exams, especially for the final, make sure that you can come down on one side of the issue. I struggled in arguing the cases because, when I got to the end, I could not decide whether I thought that the plaintiff was in the right or not in suing. While other classes may be very black-and-white in their testing, this course is all about that gray area, so you should befriend it early. However, the material was super interesting and Professor Hobbs was very willing to answer questions that expanded beyond the material of her class.
Very hard class, requires an immense amount of studying in order to ace exams. Make sure you not only MEMORIZE everything but you must ANALYZE as well because exams are hypothetical questions. Very difficult to get an "A", but useful course to take while at UCLA even if you're not a comm studies major.
CS 101 is one of the most interesting classes I have taken at UCLA as far as material, but also one of the most unbearable to sit through. I am a diligent class attender in general, but I had to force myself to attend this class if only to sign the sign-up sheets. Each lecture (once a week) had the following structure: 1) review the last week's court case readings, 2) go over this week's court case readings. If you read the course reader, all of her lectures are redundant and present no new material. However, if you don't want to do the readings, go to class. Attendance at the discussions are not mandatory; however, the TAs are responsible for grading the midterm and final (not cumulative) and it pays to get to know them and participate in discussion - I made the fatal mistake of putting my 3 final bluebooks in the wrong piles but my TA (Jeff) remembered how much I participated in discussion and graded my test anyway (rather than giving me the 0 they had decided on for students who did that.) Get to know your TA!
This is definitely NOT a cake class, but it is a very manageable one. I honestly would recommend NOT reading the cases in the course reader if you intend on attending every lecture, taking decent notes, and studying the case handouts that the TA gives you in section. I sway this because it's almost completely unnecessary to know the details and specifics of the case itself with the exception of the actual rule/test that is not only clearly and explicitly stated on the case handouts, but ingrained into your head by Hobbs. Hobbs was a very nice and personable individual away from lecture. It is a bit bizarre because she has her 3-hour lectures typed up verbatim and almost memorizes them. This kind of sucks because there is no spontaneity or extemporaneous delivery in her lectures and it's even easier to fall asleep. However, because she has what is important typed up on her manuscript, you know the important information will be stated. The last thing I will say is that while the class is clear in terms of what you need to know, you have to know the tests cold by the tests to effectively complete the exam. It's a ball-buster, 3 hour midterm and 3 hour final full of writing. Overall, a beneficial class and a good experience.
Before I took this class, I read all of the reviews posted below and got really nervous and scared. However, this class was one of the easiest classes I have ever had at UCLA. You don't need to do any of the reading since the entire lecture is a summary of the cases and sections are basically the same thing, and to top it off, everything you will need to know for the midterm/final will be given to you in a handout from your TA so you don't even need to take notes in class. In my opinion I think that attending lecture is a bit pointless, you'd be fine just going to your sections. Don't let all the hype get to you, this is a cake class where all the information is spoon fed to you. I'd recommend this class to anyone who wants a decent grade without putting in a whole lot of effort.
Don't be fooled by Hobb's guise of being a mean/alienating professor. Though she may have a dry sense of humor and a taste for sarcasm, she has been one of the most supportive and welcoming professors I've ever encountered at UCLA. Whenever I e-mailed her a question, she immediately responded and went above and beyond with providing the help I was looking for. While Comm 101 was definitely a challenge, on a personal level, Hobbs is someone you should try to get to know.
This class was extremely stressful, and I would not recommend taking it, if thats an option. Unfortunately, it's a requirement for all Comm majors. The midterm and final required extreme amounts of memorization of every case rule, application of them to a hypothetical you had never seen before, and in addition required you to argue every rule with a point and counterpoint and then sum up which argument was stronger. There was simply not enough time to do this, in the time alloted. Most students were still there frantically trying to finish their midterms when time was up. The T.A.'s can than choose to mark you off for your case argumentation, which is completely subjective. It is a difficult course, and should not be taken with other difficult course in the same semester. The Comm department always discusses how 150 is so difficult, when this is REALLY a killer class.
I love professor Hobbs' lecturing style. She's so sarcastic and hilarious and despite a disclaimer that she's not there to entertain, her very entertaining lecture style really helps you understand the material. I'd never read a court case before this class but I didn't find it too difficult to figure it out. The tests don't necessarily require that you've done all the reading, so if you don't get through the bajillion cases, it's ok. Just make sure you're familiar with all the concepts. I'm glad this class was required, because I probably wouldn't have taken it otherwise, but I'm glad I did because I feel I learned some very valuable things.
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