Shahin Berenji

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POL SCI 20
World Politics Full Profile > 3.5 Overall 4.0 Easiness 2.5 Workload 3.5 Clarity 4.0 Helpfulness
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POL SCI 20
World Politics See Full Profile

Overall 3.5 Easiness 4.0 Workload 2.5 Clarity 3.5 Helpfulness 4.0

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POL SCI 122A
World Order See Full Profile

Overall 5.0 Easiness 3.0 Workload 3.0 Clarity 5.0 Helpfulness 5.0

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Go to class, take notes from his slides (he doesn't post his slides...usually), study for the exam using the study guides he provides, and you're good! I learned a lot from him. Class can get a little boring since he repeats concepts a lot but the concepts are interesting, he is very passionate about them (especially nuclear weapons), and it just means less stuff to study later. You need to go to class unfortunately to get the notes, but you only need to read the readings that you will be quizzed on (he tells you which ones will be on the quiz). Overall, he was a very friendly, relatable, and intelligent professor and I would take him again. Be aware that the final is like 50% of your grade though so don't fail that.

(Spring Quarter 2019)
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POL SCI M132B
International Relations of Middle East See Full Profile

Overall 2.5 Easiness 3.5 Workload 3.5 Clarity 2.5 Helpfulness 2.5

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I have very mixed feelings about this class. One the one hand, I found the class material really interesting. He requires textbooks for the class, but I never used them since he repeats the material in lecture. The only time you will need to complete the readings are if they're marked for a quiz. Quizzes are also really easy since the questions are pretty explicit in what they're asking.

The class focused on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the Middle East, beginning with the migration of European Jews around the 1800s and into the present. His lectures are very in-depth. I highly recommend copying all the notes he presents in lectures and adding in the details he mentions because there's a good chance that you'll need it for the midterm and final. For this quarter, the exams were open-note, so you were at a strong advantage if you took detailed notes throughout the quarter. For the midterm and final exams, you will want to show your knowledge about the class material with depth, so add as much detail as you can.

Although I found the class material interesting, he was very disorganized throughout the quarter. Lectures were posted towards the end of the week or the week after, which kept pushing our schedule back. He also changed the syllabus around towards the end because we ran out of time to complete all the materials. If you're interested in the material and can withstand the disorganization of the class, this might be it for you. Otherwise, I'd be careful if you're concerned about your grade throughout the quarter.

(Spring Quarter 2020)
POL SCI 138B
International Politics, 1914 to the Present See Full Profile

Overall 2.5 Easiness 2.1 Workload 2.6 Clarity 2.5 Helpfulness 2.6

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Well. How should I begin? As an IR concentration student, having taken quite a lot of international relations classes already, I thought this class would be another fascinating and exciting class, especially as it involves one of the most exciting periods for IR: Cold War. Well, I guess I was wrong. Of all the classes I have taken so far, this is the only class that I decided to leave a comment for. After being deceived by a post on Reddit as well as a previous review from the earlier quarter, I thought this class would be great and interesting. But, I was wrong. Like many others who took the class in Winter of 2020, I am frustrated by the disorganized structure of the class, forcing us to commit our time and efforts to accommodate with him. As we all know, winter of 2020 was a difficult time for many of us due the unfortunate public health crisis. Well, instead of alleviating the stress for his students, he made sure that both the final and the final papers are being graded tougher, as he claims that "we had more time". Okay, that is fine, but I do not understand why he made us to purchase all these pricey materials, when very little of the materials were incorporated on the exams. In addition, I have no idea how most of us got such a low final grade. For me, my midterm score was 96%, and I scored full score for all quizzes. I also completed the extra credit quiz. Yet, after both the final exam where I scored a 90% and the final paper where I scored 88%, I end up receiving a B+ for the overall class grade. This is absurd, because while other professors have made the class fairly accommodating, he made the class harder by curving under a b.s. scale. If you guys still want to take this class, fine. But do not come back and complain about it as many of the Winter 2020 students have already provided warnings regarding the class. If I had known that earlier, I would not have given up my 3.8ish GPA for this class, especially during my last quarter. This is absurd and insane. Screw this class.

(Winter Quarter 2020)
POL SCI 139
Special Studies in International Relations See Full Profile

Overall 4.6 Easiness 3.5 Workload 3.1 Clarity 4.8 Helpfulness 4.9

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Let me start this review off by saying that Berenji is an amazing lecturer and professor. He really cares about his students and is very clearly passionate about what he teaches. He clearly knows what he's talking about and is very enthusiastic about all that he teaches. But I will say this class is difficult. This was by far the most difficult political science course I've taken at UCLA, and needless to say I was extremely stressed the entire quarter. Even with spending a whole week studying for this class and putting in a lot of time into it I still could barely get a B. The exam essays are harshly graded, and you have to explain each subject you bring up in detail within the time constraints or else you won't get a good grade. Overall, I wouldn't recommend this class if you're looking for something that isn't very difficult or stressful. If you plan on taking Berenji, plan on being overwhelmed the majority of the quarter. Good Luck.

(Fall Quarter 2019)
POL SCI 195CE
Community and Corporate Internships in Political Science See Full Profile

Overall N/A Easiness N/A Workload N/A Clarity N/A Helpfulness N/A

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