I didn't love this class, but I didn't hate it either. The lectures were pretty meh, but Professor Katz is a really wonderful person who truly seems to care about her students. She also is kind of badass considering how young she is and how much experience/knowledge she already has. I worked my butt off for this class but in the end I don't regret it. I learned a lot.
She's fine! This isn't the BEST class you'll take but she's really nice and is genuinely trying for her students. She isn't used to teaching undergrad, which is probably where the problems with this course come in, but she's genuinely very kind and looking to help you do well.
Not great - I don't think I've learned anything from lectures, since half the time is spent talking about her time working in the Bush administration (which, to be fair, is interesting, but gets old after the third class). There are manyyy long readings, which is understandable and useful for the first third of the class when you're learning about IR theories, but less useful for the rest when they're mostly op-eds that basically say the same thing. The material itself is very interesting, but the lectures just don't present it in a useful or interesting manner.
I don't write reviews because I don't want to be mean to teachers but honestly, I think I'd be doing a disservice to students by not reviewing this professor since there isn't enough on here about here. She is not a good undergrad teacher- too much reading and not enough guidance. I don't think I learn anything from lectures. The reading is way too much. Take a different prof or a different intro class honestly. Not worth it, esp for your first poli sci
Took this class in Spring 2020 but reviewing it now because I saw that she's teaching the class again. PLEASE STAY AWAY. If you're not a polsci major and you want to get a glimpse into the field, THIS IS THE WORST CLASS TO TAKE. She doesn't know her material and as others have said, spends lecture time going on and on about herself. I've nothing against her personally, I think she is a nice human being. But Katz qua professor is horrible. She assigns very heavy readings and doesn't bother unpacking them--almost as if she doesn't know them. Classes are not intellectual experiences at all. Honestly, she has a super interesting background and I'm sure she knows loads about East Asia. She'll probably be more effective in an E Asia focused seminar.
IIRC, this was her first time teaching an undergrad course, usually she teachers grad level courses. I saw this reflected in the readings. I found them to be pretty heavy honestly and didn't have time to read them often (which you absolutely need to do at some point in order to write the 2 midterm and 1 final essays - the 2 weeks before midterms I went through them all and pulled important quotes to prep). As a lecturer, I think she did a great job. I would agree with the previous comment, she can be repetitive about the structure of the course and going through how she organizes her lecture so the first 15 minutes isn't new material, but once she starts lecturing she does a great job. She knows how to narrow down broad topics to make them easier to understand while still maintaining the context of the larger discussion. Her slides are very clear and while she goes through them fast sometimes, usually I had time to write down the info. She also follows the textbook well so if I missed anything I could look in there fill in the notes. She is very organized and her expectations for all her students are clearly elucidated, especially for all the papers. She provides a few question options for you to answer on each paper so you have some choice what you would like to write about. As a person, she's very caring and she loves meeting with her students and talking with them in office hours. The guest speakers she brought in were also very interesting and she always shared her experiences in the IR field which was cool and one of my favorite parts. If you're on Zoom turn your camera on because she hates talking to an empty class! Despite the fact this is a large lecture class she is super accessible to her students and I encourage you to take the time to talk with her and learn from her! I absolutely would recommend her for the intro to IP course. She doesn't baby you, but she does support you.
She is a very nice person but not a great lecturer. She spends the first 30-45 mins of lecture either talking about herself or something that was covered last class. Her lectures are often very boring and it is tough to stay engaged the whole time. She does have guest speakers pretty often which is pretty cool. When it it comes to grading she is very tough and emphasizes how tough she is which is pretty stern for an introductory level course. I would try to find a different professor for this course if possible.