Ancient Egyptian Religion
Spring 2016 - Worst class I have taken at UCLA with a bad professor teaching it. It is currently Spring 2018 and I made a bruinwalk account before graduating just to review this class I took two years ago in the hopes that some people see this and decide against enrolling. Dieleman means well, but he is an incredibly boring lecturer teaching only increasingly irrelevant material. In his lectures he shows a very vague and sparse lecture slide and fills in the details, often going on tangents that make the entire presentation hard to follow or take good notes during. This also means you can't skip the class and just read over slides, because the information on them incoherent without some of the things he says in class. To make matters worse, the class is not easy. You're tested on the names of Egyptian gods and goddesses based on drawings of them, and you need know obscure backstories and myths associated with many of them. It may depend on your TA, but the essay and bluebook tests are not graded easily. The research papers are mind-numbing and require long hours to complete. The only redeeming quality about this class is Dieleman's genuine interest in Ancient Egyptian religion (even if he cares much less about trying to make students share his interest). If you still feel like taking this class, download Microsoft OneNote, sit in the front, and record the lecture audio as you take notes so you can go back and try to make sense of what he says. But again, I wholeheartedly discourage you from taking this class; there are much more interesting (and easier) classes to take to fulfill your GE requirement.
Spring 2018 - In theory, this class should have been very informative and fun at the same time. Realistically, the class was informative, but Simpson expects her students to memorize every small detail for her midterm. The midterm was unnecessarily detail-oriented and hard, but the average was in the high 80's, so I guess it was just me rather than the class as a whole. Grade is based on a raw scale, so there is no curve (whether it may be good or bad for students). There are 2 essays in this class (one is 2000 words and the other is 3000 words). In my honest opinion, I probably could have gotten my point across in 1500 words for both essays, but found myself just adding simple fluff to meet the word limit. Finally, I want to add that this is a Philo GE. There is a reason why I have been putting off this GE for as long as I could. I really detest Philosophy, and I wanted to take this class to learn about the history of Ancient Egyptian Religion rather than exert my own opinions on an academic assignment. It was personally hard for me to really apply myself in a class in which I simply wanted to learn the history and nothing else. I've never received a B+ in a GE before, but honestly I'll take it for this class. I didn't read any of the required readings and wrote the essays in the night prior. Professor Simpson is what I would describe as a hit or miss professor. Some people love her; some people hate her personality and grading methods. Personally, I didn't like her. Her attitude was a bit brash and she was a bit snarky at times. She was an effective lecturer though, which is hard to find at UCLA these days. Final Note: Relign M132 and AN N EA M130 are the same class, so this review is for both of those courses.