Todd Presner
Department of German
AD
4.6
Overall Rating
Based on 39 Users
Easiness 3.7 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.4 / 5 How clear the class is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 3.0 / 5 How much workload the class is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 4.6 / 5 How helpful the class is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Uses Slides
  • Is Podcasted
  • Engaging Lectures
  • Gives Extra Credit
  • Would Take Again
  • Tolerates Tardiness
  • Often Funny
  • Useful Textbooks
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
GRADE DISTRIBUTIONS
79.3%
66.1%
52.9%
39.7%
26.4%
13.2%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

49.4%
41.1%
32.9%
24.7%
16.5%
8.2%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

55.8%
46.5%
37.2%
27.9%
18.6%
9.3%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

40.4%
33.6%
26.9%
20.2%
13.5%
6.7%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

ENROLLMENT DISTRIBUTIONS
Clear marks

Sorry, no enrollment data is available.

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Reviews (28)

1 of 3
1 of 3
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Quarter: Winter 2022
Grade: B+
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
March 24, 2022

I expected this class to be a walk in the park, as Bruinwalk suggested. However, I was so very wrong. Professor was alright, but literally we could not go a lecture without TA Anna Brungardt interrupting to make a “point of privilege.”

For example, in Week 3, she made a whole deal about avoiding the words “insane” and “crazy” in our weekly 2-page reflections because using those words are “ableist and appropriate the real lived experiences of someone with mania or hysteria.” I am not even kidding; this was said in class. I got points taken off of my reflections for writing “It is insane to me when I fathom how many lives 6 million lives is.”

I was docked so many points for not being the most PC person in the class. I tried but I can never be as woke as the TA, and when I voiced my concerns that I don’t understand how she would like for assignments to be done, she corrected me on my privilege. It was week 8 at this point, so it was too late to drop or P/NP.

There was A LOT of readings and movies to watch: like 3-5 hours a week every week. The final was 3 hours long and 9 pages of intense writing about close readings of a graphic novel character’s costume or a close reading of why a 2 degree angle is vitally important in preserving memory.

If Anna Brungardt is your TA, run for the hills b/c Todd Presner will enable her behavior and do little to assist you in being successful in the class.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Fall 2020
Grade: A+
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Feb. 2, 2021

Wow, this class was amazing. I learned so much. And, the great thing was that he related the subject matter to current day events. This really was an eye-opener. He is a great teacher and the methods he used were so varied that they kept our interest. The first hand testimonies were incredible, and the films and readings were all so interesting that it seemed easy because it kept my interest the entire time. He is passionate about the subject and really wants the students to learn and understand what led up to the Holocaust. Great class - I would highly recommend!

Helpful?

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Quarter: Fall 2020
Grade: A
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Jan. 2, 2021

The course is very meaningful and you gain a lot of perspectives on the Holocaust. We covered a diverse range of topics, all of which were quite in-depth for the limited amount of time we had in the quarter. I especially appreciated the opportunity to talk to a Holocaust survivor and engage with the IWitness program (as well as listen to the brilliant people who were working on the virtual testimony project).

Prof. Presner is thoughtful, eloquent, and very knowledgeable about the subjects. Professor Presner was also aware of the difficult social and political situations we are in right now and took the appropriate amount of time to reflect on the present and connect with the students. My TA was Kyle, who really strived to deepen our understanding of the material by asking thoughtful and challenging questions. I definitely gained new insights after attending every discussion session (from listening to other students' perspectives and from Kyle's guiding questions).

The workload was on the heavier side: 2 pages of double-spaced reflection per week (8 reflections total) and the final consisted of answering two essay prompts (out of three) with 4-5 pages each (50 hr time limit). I do think that you only get the most out of this class if you put in the work and try to reflect on everything you learn/read. I would definitely recommend this class.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Spring 2019
Grade: A-
Oct. 21, 2020

Going into this class, I had a brief understanding of the material from high school history. Personally, I was very interested in this material going into the class, giving me great reason to take this class as a GE. The lectures were very detailed, giving enough information for all the tests and assignments. The professor also incorporated many informational and powerful films to coincide with course material, giving you alternate ways of viewing and understanding the history behind the topic. The discussion sections were very engaging, giving you a chance to discuss the topics at hand and even debate amongst classmates. Overall, I would give this class a high rating and recommend this class to anyone interested in a great GE or interested in the class material. The tests were correlated highly with the lecture information, making it very reasonable for you to perform greatly in this class.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Spring 2019
Grade: A
June 26, 2019

50% of your overall grade is based on 5 papers throughout the quarter. They were time consuming in that you're writing a new paper every other week, but they were not graded particularly hard. The final is really long and a lot of writing (short answers and essays) but I found it really easy from studying only the day before. Great class overall, and I definitely came out of the class having learned a ton of info about the Holocaust. Highly recommend this class and Professor Presner.

Helpful?

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Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A-
Oct. 14, 2017

Presner is my favorite professor I've had at UCLA. You can tell he is very intelligent and genuinely enjoys teaching and analyzing this subject. I feel like I knew a lot about the Holocaust before this class but then realized I really didn't. The topics we covered I feel are very important and valuable. You do have to write a few short papers throughout the quarter, but they are not graded toughly. The books and films that are required are also super interesting. At the end of the quarter we got to meet a Holocaust survivor and read their memoir, which was one of the most amazing experiences I've had and made me think about this historical event in a completely different way. If you're looking for a good GE to take I HIGHLY recommend this class.

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Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
April 26, 2017

Take this class. There is so much about the Holocaust that I knew nothing about, and taking this class taught me so much about everything leading up to it, the circumstances that allowed it to happen, and what we can learn from such a horrifying event. Guest lectures are from actual Holocaust survivors, and that was an experience that I will never forget and cherish for the rest of my life.

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Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
April 6, 2017

I'm a science major who took this as a fourth class to fulfill my last GE and it's honestly one of the best decisions. Presner is so passionate about the topic and extremely knowledgeable and it was definitely interesting to look at the Holocaust through the film and literature that surrounded it. One of the easiest classes I've taken at UCLA. Didn't go to lecture after second week and still pulled a solid A. I put the workload at a 3 because you still had to write 5 3-page essays throughout the quarter which were kinda annoying but graded really easily. Overall a super interesting topic that I wish I had more time for to actually enjoy Presner's lectures and the assigned readings instead of skimming and cramming.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
March 31, 2017

Grading: 10% discussion attendance, 50% 5 papers (2-3 pages), 40% final exam (closed-book)
***
I'm a south campus engineering major, so I took this class hoping it wouldn't be too hard/too much work. Although there is a lot of reading/films to watch, a lot of the material isn't exactly new as we've all learned about the Holocaust at some point in our lives. You definitely don't need to read any of the "extra" material and readings the professor shares, although some are pretty interesting. The books are all fairly short reads (no longer than 2-3 hours of reading) and the films can be watched in the background as you do other work. He goes over all the readings/films you should know in class, has informative slides, and bruincasts so if you fall behind, Prof. Presner has your back.
***
The class as a whole is really interesting, and the professor is clearly passionate about this class and helpful in teaching the material. He even brought in 4 Holocaust survivors to share their experiences, which was really amazing. Probably one of my favorite GEs, and a good GE class to take because it's not hard to retain the information about this class. It's not a boring history class, and although the material is sad, the way it's presented makes it so interesting and important to learn.
***
Discussion was pretty chill, we just went over the reading for the week and discussed the role of perpetrators/victims/bystanders. I missed one discussion, and make-up was just 1-2 page response to the week's reading.
***
There are 5 short 2-3 page papers, but all on the books/films/required reading. This helps you study for the final without having to study for the final. They're pretty easy to kick out, as the prompts are pretty open-ended without being too open-ended. Part of the reason I took this class is because I didn't want to have to write a huge 8-10 page paper at the end of the quarter on top of my other coursework. There was no midterm, but a final with 8-9 short answers (half a blue book page) and 3 out of 4 short essays (front and back of a single blue book page). The 9th short answer was EC. The exam was an appropriate length (many finished by 2 hours).
***
You don’t need to memorize dates, although it would be a good idea to know the key players and dates the exam is laid out in a way that there is no "trick". He supplies the names of the people he's referring to and names the author of the poem/excerpt that he then supplies on the exam. So if he is asking about a certain poet, he will supply the poem he refers to in the question. The exam simply tested how a student could share the knowledge they had, without tricking them with some hidden fact they should have known. There were pretty broad questions on the main films we watched and the books we read. Just attending lecture should sufficiently prepare you for a majority of the exam, in combination with actually having read the mandatory books and films.
***
There were 2 EC opportunities for 1% and 0.5% of your final grade. Something about a paper and visiting a museum or something.
***
In the end, I'd definitely recommend this class. Just be aware that there is a lot of reading/films, but if you do it, then the exam is very easy and the papers are very chill.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A-
March 29, 2017

Presner is super passionate about this class and I recommend if you take it, take it with him! Understanding the content was super easy because of the way the class is laid out. He assigns a lot of reading but he even says it's not necessary for you to read it all every time. Another really cool part of the class is meeting Holocaust survivors which really helps you understand and value the content even more. Great class!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Quarter: Winter 2022
Grade: B+
March 24, 2022

I expected this class to be a walk in the park, as Bruinwalk suggested. However, I was so very wrong. Professor was alright, but literally we could not go a lecture without TA Anna Brungardt interrupting to make a “point of privilege.”

For example, in Week 3, she made a whole deal about avoiding the words “insane” and “crazy” in our weekly 2-page reflections because using those words are “ableist and appropriate the real lived experiences of someone with mania or hysteria.” I am not even kidding; this was said in class. I got points taken off of my reflections for writing “It is insane to me when I fathom how many lives 6 million lives is.”

I was docked so many points for not being the most PC person in the class. I tried but I can never be as woke as the TA, and when I voiced my concerns that I don’t understand how she would like for assignments to be done, she corrected me on my privilege. It was week 8 at this point, so it was too late to drop or P/NP.

There was A LOT of readings and movies to watch: like 3-5 hours a week every week. The final was 3 hours long and 9 pages of intense writing about close readings of a graphic novel character’s costume or a close reading of why a 2 degree angle is vitally important in preserving memory.

If Anna Brungardt is your TA, run for the hills b/c Todd Presner will enable her behavior and do little to assist you in being successful in the class.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Quarter: Fall 2020
Grade: A+
Feb. 2, 2021

Wow, this class was amazing. I learned so much. And, the great thing was that he related the subject matter to current day events. This really was an eye-opener. He is a great teacher and the methods he used were so varied that they kept our interest. The first hand testimonies were incredible, and the films and readings were all so interesting that it seemed easy because it kept my interest the entire time. He is passionate about the subject and really wants the students to learn and understand what led up to the Holocaust. Great class - I would highly recommend!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
COVID-19 This review was submitted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Your experience may vary.
Quarter: Fall 2020
Grade: A
Jan. 2, 2021

The course is very meaningful and you gain a lot of perspectives on the Holocaust. We covered a diverse range of topics, all of which were quite in-depth for the limited amount of time we had in the quarter. I especially appreciated the opportunity to talk to a Holocaust survivor and engage with the IWitness program (as well as listen to the brilliant people who were working on the virtual testimony project).

Prof. Presner is thoughtful, eloquent, and very knowledgeable about the subjects. Professor Presner was also aware of the difficult social and political situations we are in right now and took the appropriate amount of time to reflect on the present and connect with the students. My TA was Kyle, who really strived to deepen our understanding of the material by asking thoughtful and challenging questions. I definitely gained new insights after attending every discussion session (from listening to other students' perspectives and from Kyle's guiding questions).

The workload was on the heavier side: 2 pages of double-spaced reflection per week (8 reflections total) and the final consisted of answering two essay prompts (out of three) with 4-5 pages each (50 hr time limit). I do think that you only get the most out of this class if you put in the work and try to reflect on everything you learn/read. I would definitely recommend this class.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2019
Grade: A-
Oct. 21, 2020

Going into this class, I had a brief understanding of the material from high school history. Personally, I was very interested in this material going into the class, giving me great reason to take this class as a GE. The lectures were very detailed, giving enough information for all the tests and assignments. The professor also incorporated many informational and powerful films to coincide with course material, giving you alternate ways of viewing and understanding the history behind the topic. The discussion sections were very engaging, giving you a chance to discuss the topics at hand and even debate amongst classmates. Overall, I would give this class a high rating and recommend this class to anyone interested in a great GE or interested in the class material. The tests were correlated highly with the lecture information, making it very reasonable for you to perform greatly in this class.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Spring 2019
Grade: A
June 26, 2019

50% of your overall grade is based on 5 papers throughout the quarter. They were time consuming in that you're writing a new paper every other week, but they were not graded particularly hard. The final is really long and a lot of writing (short answers and essays) but I found it really easy from studying only the day before. Great class overall, and I definitely came out of the class having learned a ton of info about the Holocaust. Highly recommend this class and Professor Presner.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A-
Oct. 14, 2017

Presner is my favorite professor I've had at UCLA. You can tell he is very intelligent and genuinely enjoys teaching and analyzing this subject. I feel like I knew a lot about the Holocaust before this class but then realized I really didn't. The topics we covered I feel are very important and valuable. You do have to write a few short papers throughout the quarter, but they are not graded toughly. The books and films that are required are also super interesting. At the end of the quarter we got to meet a Holocaust survivor and read their memoir, which was one of the most amazing experiences I've had and made me think about this historical event in a completely different way. If you're looking for a good GE to take I HIGHLY recommend this class.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
April 26, 2017

Take this class. There is so much about the Holocaust that I knew nothing about, and taking this class taught me so much about everything leading up to it, the circumstances that allowed it to happen, and what we can learn from such a horrifying event. Guest lectures are from actual Holocaust survivors, and that was an experience that I will never forget and cherish for the rest of my life.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
April 6, 2017

I'm a science major who took this as a fourth class to fulfill my last GE and it's honestly one of the best decisions. Presner is so passionate about the topic and extremely knowledgeable and it was definitely interesting to look at the Holocaust through the film and literature that surrounded it. One of the easiest classes I've taken at UCLA. Didn't go to lecture after second week and still pulled a solid A. I put the workload at a 3 because you still had to write 5 3-page essays throughout the quarter which were kinda annoying but graded really easily. Overall a super interesting topic that I wish I had more time for to actually enjoy Presner's lectures and the assigned readings instead of skimming and cramming.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A
March 31, 2017

Grading: 10% discussion attendance, 50% 5 papers (2-3 pages), 40% final exam (closed-book)
***
I'm a south campus engineering major, so I took this class hoping it wouldn't be too hard/too much work. Although there is a lot of reading/films to watch, a lot of the material isn't exactly new as we've all learned about the Holocaust at some point in our lives. You definitely don't need to read any of the "extra" material and readings the professor shares, although some are pretty interesting. The books are all fairly short reads (no longer than 2-3 hours of reading) and the films can be watched in the background as you do other work. He goes over all the readings/films you should know in class, has informative slides, and bruincasts so if you fall behind, Prof. Presner has your back.
***
The class as a whole is really interesting, and the professor is clearly passionate about this class and helpful in teaching the material. He even brought in 4 Holocaust survivors to share their experiences, which was really amazing. Probably one of my favorite GEs, and a good GE class to take because it's not hard to retain the information about this class. It's not a boring history class, and although the material is sad, the way it's presented makes it so interesting and important to learn.
***
Discussion was pretty chill, we just went over the reading for the week and discussed the role of perpetrators/victims/bystanders. I missed one discussion, and make-up was just 1-2 page response to the week's reading.
***
There are 5 short 2-3 page papers, but all on the books/films/required reading. This helps you study for the final without having to study for the final. They're pretty easy to kick out, as the prompts are pretty open-ended without being too open-ended. Part of the reason I took this class is because I didn't want to have to write a huge 8-10 page paper at the end of the quarter on top of my other coursework. There was no midterm, but a final with 8-9 short answers (half a blue book page) and 3 out of 4 short essays (front and back of a single blue book page). The 9th short answer was EC. The exam was an appropriate length (many finished by 2 hours).
***
You don’t need to memorize dates, although it would be a good idea to know the key players and dates the exam is laid out in a way that there is no "trick". He supplies the names of the people he's referring to and names the author of the poem/excerpt that he then supplies on the exam. So if he is asking about a certain poet, he will supply the poem he refers to in the question. The exam simply tested how a student could share the knowledge they had, without tricking them with some hidden fact they should have known. There were pretty broad questions on the main films we watched and the books we read. Just attending lecture should sufficiently prepare you for a majority of the exam, in combination with actually having read the mandatory books and films.
***
There were 2 EC opportunities for 1% and 0.5% of your final grade. Something about a paper and visiting a museum or something.
***
In the end, I'd definitely recommend this class. Just be aware that there is a lot of reading/films, but if you do it, then the exam is very easy and the papers are very chill.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: Winter 2017
Grade: A-
March 29, 2017

Presner is super passionate about this class and I recommend if you take it, take it with him! Understanding the content was super easy because of the way the class is laid out. He assigns a lot of reading but he even says it's not necessary for you to read it all every time. Another really cool part of the class is meeting Holocaust survivors which really helps you understand and value the content even more. Great class!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
1 of 3
4.6
Overall Rating
Based on 39 Users
Easiness 3.7 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.4 / 5 How clear the class is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 3.0 / 5 How much workload the class is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 4.6 / 5 How helpful the class is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Uses Slides
    (9)
  • Is Podcasted
    (7)
  • Engaging Lectures
    (8)
  • Gives Extra Credit
    (8)
  • Would Take Again
    (8)
  • Tolerates Tardiness
    (5)
  • Often Funny
    (3)
  • Useful Textbooks
    (4)
  • Appropriately Priced Materials
    (5)
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