DO NOT TAKE THIS CLASS. Professor Shideler is "cool" and all, but this is a waste of your time. He's really disorganized, he doesn't really teach. I very much regret taking this class. Not to mention, my TA is the most pretentious, pedantic person I have ever encountered. You will spend a lot of your time analyzing books and poems and still find that you are receiving poor grades on your papers. They don't really show you how to write, they just expect you to. I was not expecting this class to be so awful. Do yourself a huge favor and do not take this class. I know there are a lot of "good" reviews, but don't ignore the bad ones like I did.
Spring 2020 - Professor Shideler has been my favorite professor at UCLA so far. This Fiat Lux is super interesting and straightforward. Every week we met to read and talk about poems from a PDF he provided for us. The only assignments are three poems or one page poetry analyses. As long as you turn them in you pass. Shideler was very funny and knowledgeable about the poetry we talked about, especially more graphic poems. I learned so much and will dearly miss it.
The worst decision I have made at UCLA. Maybe I'm just a d----ss (along with everyone else I've talked to), but no matter how hard I try in this g----mn class (and I try VERY hard), I don't get anything better than a B- (which was ONCE). Although I love Shideler as a teacher, I feel that his grading system (or perhaps his TAs') is WAY too difficult considering the help that is provided in lecture, discussions, and office hours. For those of you who have average writing skills (for UCLA), STEER CLEAR (unless he changes his grading-which I hope will happen after reading this). If you're a spectacular writer, by all means take it. Maybe you'll get a B+! Who knows? I personally got an A in EngComp 3, if that means anything. If I end up with a C in this class I'll pee my pants with delight and relief. On the plus side, the readings themselves weren't very difficult or extensive. Professor Shideler himself is a wonderful teacher who loves what he teaches and has great insight. Email me your thoughts please (I also welcome hate mail-if you disagree with me)...