All Ratings and Reviews for Vickie M Mays
Professor Mays is one of the WORST professors, by far, at UCLA, if not the entire UC system. She preaches equitable accommodations and resources, but ENSURES that her course was taught with an unequal and unfair disadvantage to her students, as well as with her unprofessionalism and her mocking of her students. She claims she shares positions on multiple committees - of which I question their reputability in anointing her a position - but never once treated this course and her students with the respect she demands for herself. I was thoroughly interested in the field of study the course aimed to educate, but after a quarter with Professor Mays, I can eagerly and most sincerely say that I will never take a course taught by her EVER again, no matter how interesting the course may be. Professor Mays has not yet ONCE (EVER) read her course evaluations - her being tenured only makes her a worse example of how poorly trained some educators truly are. She is an example of an abuse of power, and an individual who shares no respect for her students AND her teaching assistant. Shelby was the ONLY source of compassion and understanding this quarter, yet was treated with disrespect the ENTIRE quarter. I believe Shelby was mentally and emotionally strained this quarter, and it had to do with how Professor Mays treated her and this course. I understand my voice as a student will not be heard, but if this does reach individuals and committees of power, do INVESTIGATE PROFESSOR MAYS - she does NOT deserve her role as an educator here at UCLA.
If you do read this, DO NOT take this class with Professor Mays. Before taking this class, I did read the BruinWalk reviews and very ignorantly ignored my peers. Professor Mays is everything her reviews say she is - none of these reviews are exaggerations. I do believe taking this class remotely with the current state of the world made this class and this professor all the more WORSE. She was NOT understanding. After the final "midterm," one week before the final exam, approximately 90 students remained in the Zoom meeting to voice their concerns about her offering an optional or no-harm final - to which she mocked us and claimed that she had no power in altering HER already-flawed syllabus to which she failed to abide to throughout the quarter. Do not take this class with Professor Mays.
It is an extremely tough class. Part of the pandemic/protest quarter, her accommodations were little to none. You miss 8 points throughout the quarter, you will be getting an A-.
Workload is fairly light, no textbook, readings each week on CCLE, with six 500 word reading responses due over the course. Two midterms, one is in week 10, plus a final. All multiple choice. Grading is extremely vague - an 'A' is the second highest grade in the class, so you never know how you're doing really. Mays is also the rudest, most unpleasant professor I've had - she's passive aggressive and plain mean to many students who ask questions. She also interjects her own accomplishments into every lecture, and not in a way that's meant to enhance the students knowledge; it's very much "look at how amazing I am and how important I am and how great I am." Work isn't difficult but she made the class unpleasant.
I feel compelled to write this review after I see that Professor Mays has continued to receive awards and committee appointments (ex: award for lifetime contributions to mental health, special advisor to chancellor on Black life). I truly cannot believe how she receives such prestigious positions and awards. I hope that higher-ups at UCLA eventually see student reviews and and look into her as an educator. If she is an exceptional researcher and provides value in these university positions, fine - but she has absolutely NO place educating undergraduate students.
I will say first that I don't regret taking the class because I am very interested in the material and I gained value from doing the weekly assigned reading. I also didn't think the class was super difficult. PROCEED WITH CAUTION though when choosing to take this class because the reviews below are true - you will be putting yourself through a bunch of nonsense in order to get access to some interesting articles.
That said, Professor Mays is a worse educator than any high school or middle school teacher I ever had - not an exaggeration. All she does is show hundreds of slides with 0 organization and then ramble for an hour. Then, to assess you, she gives poorly-written 10-question multiple choice exams that do not assess your true understanding of the material. SHE NEEDS TO STICK TO RESEARCH. Especially at a school like UCLA, students deserve better.
She's also the rudest professor I ever had experience with in my 4 years at UCLA. I don't know if all of the recognition for her work has gone to her head or what, but she is self-centered and arrogant. She is rude and dismissive to students. I can't imagine how she would be pleasant to work with in her role as an advisor to the chancellor or her other committee roles. I hope that UCLA considers the character of their researchers and educators in the future when making decisions, not just their "achievements."
This was by far the worst class I've taken at UCLA so far. Waking up at 8 am was absolute torture. As people said below, there are 3 midterms (lowest gets dropped) and a final for this class. For the first midterm, I read the book once and studied my lecture notes mainly. I got a D with the curve. For the second midterm, I only studied the book and didn't look at her lecture notes at all. I got a 103%. Therefore, if you feel you are comfortable memorizing 600+ pages of textbook, then take this class. Don't bother asking questions, because she doesn't really like to answer them and will respond "I can see you haven't read the book" even when you have. Also, don't bother asking what you need to know for the tests, because the response will be "If it's in the textbook, it's fair game." i DO NOT recommend this class. It is not worth waking up two times a week at 8 am for. If you must take this class, the enrichment sections run by the TA are much more helpful than her lectures.
professor mays was the worst teacher ive ever had in my entire life. this is not an exaggeration, she is horrible. her lectures were completely useless.. you're in there from 8-950am with no break what so ever. and she doesn't really know how to keep you're attention. she goes off on tangents that are not relevant to anything, and when she does talk about the material it's a short description that she zips through. oh and she uses no power point, no podcasts, nothing. so if you missed what she said, you missed it. and trying to ask her any questions is useless, first she makes you feel like an idiot for asking, then she doesn't answer your question. when she's done with her rant you're just left going "um.. thats not what i asked". If you have no choice but to take her, just read the book and make study guides out of the chapters she assigns. I also forgot, she assigned us at least 15 chapters for a 10 week quarter. the first test nearly everyone in that class failed the midterm. but she drops one so try to do your best until the very last one. the midterm review session were completely useless, they are run by her undergraduate t.a's that looked like they didnt know if they should be there or not, they looked lost and if you asked a question they would look forever into the book to find the answer. after 10 minutes of that i left, i could just read the book at home and not waste my time. sometimes the things she says in class are contradictory to the book, and when you bring that up she goes if its in the book then go by the book. so she basically just told us that her lectures are useless. she tries to get people to come to class by saying theres random question of the days and if u get 9 out of 10 right then she'll bump you up 2 points if your grade is 2 points away from getting the higher grade. throughout the quarter she only did 5, she never did the full 10. you can imagine how frustrating that could get. DO NOT TAKE!!! i feel like the good reviews on this page were written by herself.
I didn't listen to the flurry of bad reviews listed below because this class fit into my schedule, and it was the biggest mistake of my college career. If you value quality education that consists of a well structure class with a thoughtful, engaging and detailed professor who cares about your success... then do not take this course.
Her lectures are very loosely structured with no thoughtful connection to the exams. She basically shows up and blurts out everything that comes off the top of her head about each chapter, and then tests you with random information directly out of the book (most of which she never mentions in lecture), which basically means if you want an A you have to memorize every single detail on this EXTREMELY dense and complex subject matter. This is a lazy and, quite frankly, sadistic method of teaching. I have a 3.7 and have studied harder for this class then I ever have, and have never done so poorly.
Learn from my mistake and avoid this nightmare course at all costs.
Avoid this miserable woman like the plague.
To illustrate examples from class she made constant references to tv shows, if you didn't watch the shows then you didn't get the point of the example. For instance "this disorder is kind of like... what Marty did" Really, thats nice, who the fuck is Marty?
In addition to her inane teaching style she was the most vindictive professor I've ever had. After multiple attempts at getting her to clarify class material she stopped answering my questions and, at one point in class, asked if there were any questions, made eye contact with me while my hand was raised high in the air, then looked away and said "moving on".
It was only out of hatred towards this cruel creature that I was driven to do well in this class.
Learn from my mistake.
I loved the content and materials of this class all except Professor Mays. I worked hard for an A but never liked her teaching style or lack of it. She is unorganized and full of herself. When someone questions or challenges her she shrugs it off by senseless rants. Her exams are poorly written (for someone who holds a PhD) and incomprehensible. You could feel that she does NOT genuinely care for her students' learning. I love UCLA but I hope you filter out and check tenured professors like her who does not keep up with the standards of higher education.
She is one of the most unhelpful and condescending professors I've ever encountered. No matter what class she teaches or anything she's in charge of, do not take it with her. She doesn't guide you properly into understanding the material and when you do ask questions for clarifications, she makes you feel stupid and incompetent. She has no genuine concern for students at all which makes me wonder why she's a professor in the first place if she doesn't value helping students. She is super disorganized and is never focussed on one task at a time but go on tangents to different things. Despite being like this, she will openly and harshly criticize you for not knowing your stuff, when she ironically fails to even teach it to us. I have had my bad share of professors but at least some of them cared enough despite being bad professors. But, this one does not even deserve to be an educator, let along a professor or doctor.
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