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She is one of the best professors I have ever had. I have no idea where people get the idea from that she has a big ego. She is actually pretty down to earth compared to some professors at UCLA. Her class is pretty cool, as you actually study great legal work.
Her midterm is %40 and is actually pretty difficult, ranging from very specific questions like the Art. Section and Clause of something from the Constitution to extremely broad problems. DON'T WORRY THOUGH. Her final is %60 (2 take-home essays) and it is actually pretty simple, easy, and straight forward.
I got a B in the midterm and did well on the final and got an A in the class. Just take as much notes as you possibly can in her class and ATTEND EVERY SINGLE LECTURE. If you have great notes, you don't even need to read the book. I had more than 90 pages of notes typed up and had to barely read the book for the final.
ONLY TAKE HER CLASS IF YOU'RE INTERESTED IN LAW as it would be a living hell otherwise (based on some of my classmates' experiences).
Professor Lebow's class is more of a "civil responsibility" class focused on Separation of Powers than . She really wants to have students engage with the material and understand how cases that were decided decades or centuries ago still have an impact on the lives of everyday people. Because of this, she also really puts a lot of emphasis on class participation. Which means: 1) Do the reading, or at least the important parts. You don't need to have every case memorized before you come in, but know the basic concepts; 2) Sit near the front, and raise your hand often. It will make a big difference when she's grading your final; 3) Talk with her. Doesn't even need to be in office hours, a brief question after class will show her that you're interested in the material.
There's a lot of reading, but not all of it is entirely necessary. You should still get a study group for the mid-term though, to make sure you understand all the ideas. On the mid-term, there were no questions about court cases that were not addressed in class (WHICH MEANS GO TO LECTURE; yes it's long, but it is valuable). The final allows you to pick 2/4 questions to write 8 page papers on. I wrote mine pretty last minute, still managed an A. Make sure you focus on the ideas she discusses in class, and you'll be fine.
Overall Grade: A+
40% Midterm (short answer). 60% Take-home Final (2 essays). Go to class, take good notes, get an A. Don't go to class, no notes, get an F. It's as simple as that for all her classes. Personally, she was the best I ever had. Highly recommended.
Good Luck taking Lebow.
She is one of the most pretentious professors I have taken thus far in my UCLA career. She is very self-involved, which comes across in her lectures and teaching style. She thinks a lot of herself and her personal subject, acting like you have no other obligations at your time at UCLA. She expects you to focus on her class and her class only. There was a absurd amount of reading for the class topic and the midterm was ridiculous. Ranged from broad very obvious questions (which she later berated us for not giving her verbatim answer) to extremely specific questions on the most obscure court cases. She does try to get student involvement, which is mostly all the students who worship at her feet and go to every office hour trying to get that precious letter of rec. Her grading is super subjective and her lectures are just what she feels like talking at you about that day. My advice if you have to take her: your essay and midterm just match the exact words that came out of her mouth in lecture or in the book, because she is just looking to see her own ideas.
Prof Lebow is very impressive: became a lawyer when women weren't regarded highly in the field, worked for VP Biden, Janet Reno, worked the RANT Corporation and did public and private law. All her classes are intense. She expects you do not only memorize a bunch of cases which will probably be your first time being exposed to law at UCLA but to know the ins and outs, the implications, and connect them to other law cases. She is helpful and welcomes office hours if you go. While she doesn't pick "favorites" she does have a core group of students that tend to participate and go to her office hours and they seem to be doing well but the majority of students seem lost. This class is intense workload and hard grading. She expects you to be super serious. This class is barely political science and mostly law. If you want to get a feel for law I encourage you to take any of her classes in a low work-load quarter and with some friends. I did not get good grades in her class (lowest ever grades at UCLA) but I am not upset with her, mostly just aware that I had way too much going on to fully commit myself hours a week to this class. Her classes are usually 2 hours, no breaks and cover a HUGE range of material. Take it and learn something but remember 1)This is nothing like a Political Science class 2) She grades hard. 3) You NEED friends in the class 4) Be okay with getting a lower grade for putting the same effort in another class 5) Go to her office hours 6)Sit in the front, she has a soft voice 7)Be prepared to really be challenged