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This was the worst experience I had with a professor at UCLA. No grading transparency whatsoever. Although it's obvious she really enjoys the material, she does not seem to like students in general. The day she gave out the prompt for the final exam, I went to the professor (a WEEK before we were to take the final) to ask her if she had any tips for me on how to improve from my A- status to a solid A. I didn't think this was unreasonable - I wanted to see what kind of questions she was going to give us first. She basically yelled at me for not coming to her sooner. It was my first quarter at UCLA and a very discouraging experience - I'm glad I found out soon enough that the other professors in the department don't scold students that try to come to them for constructive advice. I ended up with an A-, which doesn't seem that bad except that I actually did study very hard and am generally a straight A student. Oh well.
Professor Pearlstone is very intelligent and her subject matter - Native American arts - are interesting. However, she's one of those professors that makes you wonder why they're an educator... she was visibly annoyed with students' slightest noises in class and isn't what you'd call a "people person."
She grades harshly and isn't very willing to discuss her grading after the fact. I earned an A- on our term paper (which accounted for 40% of the final grade), a B+ on the midterm (30%), and a B- on the final (30%) and received an overall grade of a B in the class.
Her grading notes are vague and without percentages. I emailed her multiple times without response before finally getting in touch with her via a counselor to discuss my grade which she called a B at 87% despite never putting point totals on our assignments.
Bottom Line: interesting subject matter, especially for non-western upper div requirements, but avoid her antics and stingy grading if possible.
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