Monthly Archives: September 1982

1982.09.24: Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes (UCLA Law School)

1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes 1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes_Page_1 1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes_Page_2 1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes_Page_3 1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes_Page_4 1982.09.24 Leon Proposed First Year Curriculum Changes_Page_5

1982 Fall: Leon Letwin, Law 145 (Civil Procedure) Student Evaluations

View in searchable PDF format: 1982 Fall – Leon Letwin, Law 145 Student Evaluations.OCR


Raw text:


Teaching Evaluations

Law 145

Fall 1982

+ Instructor’s greatest areas of strength

Instruct or s greatest areas of weakness

C Additional Comments


1. + – Letwin understands student remarks better than students

do-makes sense of them, uses them to develop ideas, etc . Also, sense

of humor helps !

C Best course I’ve had in 9 years of higher educationand the

subject matter has the reputation of being the dullest aspect of the

first year of law. Remarkable!

Reasons: (1) Letwin’s approach, emphasizing the philosophical,

political and ethical aspects of this material . (2) His obvious mastery

of the material. (3) His warmth and humanity in interaction. This has

been an excellent intro . to law! .,.,.,..

2. + His knowledge and an approach which includes discussion of

politics and policy.

C – An excellent, inspiring instructor. I wish there were more

like him.


3. + Making rather dry material interesting; bringing out underlying

policy concerns .

C – This course has been not only the most interesting of all my

courses this semester, but also one of the most challenging. ,.,..,.

4 . + Encouragement of student discussion/stimulation of interest in

the subject matter . Sensitivity to individual student needs.

4. (cont.)

– = Sometimes the class seems to be permitted to stray too far from

the substantive law.

C- I appreciate Prof . Letwin’s bringing legal ethics and the

social implications of the law and its application into our discussions.

I feel these considerations will better prepare me to be a responsible

member of the legal profession and to think analytically about the

issues which I will face in that profession . …. 5. + Very warm and genuinely interested in us as people as well as

students. Articulate and communicates ideas well.

I feel I need a bit more of the nuts and bolts.

c ….

6. + Allowing for high level of student participation yet being able

to direct the discussion and keep it on the relevant subject.

C – Enjoy the way public policy is integrated into discussion and

amount of student input ….

7. +-Presentation and ability to integrate student responses into a

coherent and meaningful outline .

A couple of outdated idioms. (This was tough to come up


C I entered this class with skepticism over how interesting I

would find the subject matter . However, Prof. Letwin’s wellconceived

presentation and personable attitude have contributed to the overall

high marks on this evaluation.


8. + His unassuming, yet authoritative method of teaching.


…. c

9. + Sensitivity to student’s questions.

Talks very quickly.

c –


10. +-His extreme fairness ., He is gifted as a pedagogue .




11 . + He makes a potentially boring class interesting.

Sometimes moves a lit tle too fast but at least we’re covering a

lot of material.

c 12 . +

Sometimes doesn’t seem to answer questions he knows the answer

to .


13 . + – His genuine interest in the subject and his concern for

students grasp of the subject matter.


C I felt like he spent a lot of time on subjects falling on the

first 1/2 of the class and were forced to rush through some areas in the

last 1/2 .

14 . + – Open to new ideas.

c – 15. + – Wit, hipness.

C He d be a great uncle . 16. + – Knowledge of subject matter/teaching skills/int erest in

students .

Instruction sometimes gets missed in bog of uncertainty class

goes off on tangents.



17. +-Teaching, inspiring student interest.

Doesn’t discipline those who ramble on too long.

c – ….

18. +-Not(!) getting sidetracked too often. Giving everyone a chance

to speak.

= His lack of hair.



19. + – Use of socratic method and development of ideas.

= None

c 20. + -Prof. Letwin combines both personal warmth, intellectual

enthusiasm and exceptional powers of communication.

His house is too small for 90 people.

C He should announce changes in the syllabus much sooner (e.g.

when the supplement substitutes for the regular casebook).


21 . + -Helps student feel comfortable, knows subject matter very well.

I can’t think of any.



22. + Gentle, yet productive, intelligent, and efficient.


23. + – Patience w/student ideas, accessibility, best instructor we

have had b/c of the clarity of the presentation.

– – “Some” bias against presenting both sides w/o impunity!

Arguably acceptable.



24. + – Ability to convey his ideas and the general rules of law to the

class; also, he discusses the policy implications of court decisions and

statutory enactments, etc .

Can’t think of any.

C It would be good to have more profs like him. Unfortunately,

we don‘t 25. + Extremely tactful, conducts class discussions beautifully;

obviously enjoys his field; funny--and idealistic.

– = Hectic pace.

c 26 . + – His enthusiasm, wit and abil ity to communicate interest and

importance of subject matter. Also his ability to weave crucial social

values into course is good.

– = Often overly philosophical but his intentions are good.

C No comments, overall an excellent, enlightening course and

instructor •• • A+. 27. +-The analytical process of exam1n1ng procedure, its impact on

the merits of the case, and the policy considerations underlying it .

C The course allowed students to examine the political impact of

the law in society–ver y often that is not part of l egal educati on.


28. + Receptiveness to students’ views, interesting presentation,

compassion, energetic approach to teaching, capability to control

discussions (“guide”).

Can’t think of any–I really enjoy your s t y l e of teaching.

C- Go more s l owly (a little) . Otherwise, the class has been the

high point in interest of the semester.

29. + Control of class and leading discussion. Communicating

importance and philosophy behind case decisions and rules.

C – The book was very good. The cases were tough but the professor

did an excellent job of making them understandable and meaningful . ….

30. + (1) Mastery of the subject. (2) Enthusiasm about the course.

(3) Creates excellent atmosphere in classroom.


~ + Ability to grapple with complex concepts.

Lets us out late-comes to class on time.



32 . + – Positive attitude, amiability, use of language.




33. + – Energy, enthusiasm, ability to generate interest .

Presentation occasionally confusing.

C – Use a bet ter book


34 . + Ability to lead discussion effectively, communicate clearly

with students.

– = Coughing on coffee, kicking tape recorders, mastery of lighting

system is weak.



35. + His obvious interest and enthusiasm.

His occasional impatience.

C My only fear in Civ Pro would be that unfortunate student who

has this boring material coupled with a boring instructor–my thanks to

Mr. Letwin for avoiding this eventuality .

~ 36. + Competence, confidence , accessibility , openness.

c 37 . +-Organization, the ability to steer us in the right direction

whi le not putting people off and hurting their feelings. Not boring!

= He stutters sometimes.

C He ‘s the best prof . we ve got. Very concerned with the quality

of our education. Plus, he’s a nice guy!


38 . +-His respect for student’s comments. He is easy to approach.

= Almost nonexistent. Maybe encourage more discussion for the

quiet student . He tries to achieve this.

c 39. + Conveying interest in subject to students . Conveying

excitement of subject to students .

– = Putting off student questions which go beyond the basic subject

of discussion .



40 . + – Accessibility, introduction of breadth to class material, good

at handling discussion.


41. + Quickness of mind, ability to see and communicate basic issues,

sense of humor .

C – This class was very enjoyable, wellorganized and chal lenging.

Mr. Letwin did a heroic job to be as good as he was everyday . I’d

definitely recommend this course and I’d like to take another course

from him. 42. + – He is organized . He summarizes . He can be funny at times .

When he gets into a particular mind frame any idea pr esented by

the class which does not conform to his mind frame, he ignores . If he

could just take t he time to say-we can get to that later or see me

after class–I think that would be more receptive to the class.

c 43 . + He is very receptive t o student ideas and does not pretend to

know all t he answers. Also he makes a very difficult, boring and

ridiculous subject area interesting.

= Some days – not many, we cover material too fast (use of charts

and joinder of claims and parties) so that it is difficult to understand


C Some manner of getting f ull class participation woul d be

beneficial to the class and Letwin would be able to call on people

without making them feel self-conscious (his style is very unpretentious

and human). Of all classes, this is the one where people could overcome

stage fright .” The same people tend to dominate all of our classes and

it would be great to somehow get away from this •

…. 44. + – Enthusiasm, receptivity to students, classroom presentations .

C Mr . Letwin is one of the finest professors I have ever had

(includes undergraduate). His classroom discussions are interesting yet

directional . The only suggestion for improvement that I have is a minor

one: better organization needed among the various topics. 45. + – Good communication with students (good control of socratic


Biased political viewpoints dispensed in the guise of

discussing the issues–the world isn’t so skewed in terms of power;

corporations are not all bad guys .

C Should require FRCP with no writing in them for exam. Many

students are putting entire outlines in the margins; others of us are

struggling with questions of ethics v . possibly doing better on exams .


46. + – Keeping class on the subject at hand, diversity of view in

presentation, enjoyed philosophical discussions in class.



47 . +-He is very easy-going. He makes a course that could be dull,

very i nteresting. He brings in policy issues which are very important.

– – He often starts to make conclusory statements or brings things

together and then stops in mid-sentence.



48. + He is very approachable and willing to help, to explain, to

elaborate on class material. He never makes students feel

stupid-confused, maybe, but not stupid .

– = The same as for most law professors in that it often isn’t

clear where the class discussion i s headed. I suppose that’s the fault

of the teaching method .

C – I wish all professors were as concerned about and interested in

our progress as students in absorbing and understanding the course

material. My major regret is that this course doesn’t go all year so

that we could have Mr. Letwin for another semester . I would like to say

more but, uncharacteristically, words fail me. Let it suffice to say

that Mr. Letwin is absolutely the best professor I’ve ever had . 49. + – Excellent use of discussion and clarification of issues both

before and after.

= Rarely but: lack of willingness to describe current

interpretation of law, i .e. FRCP Rule B–ean you ever really use compul .

counterclaim in place of cross claim?

C Joinder problem allows student to test her knowledge and such

problems would be useful for each area covered . The more feedback the

better. Civil procedure was made fascinating by Mr . Letwin s excellent

teaching. I’m sure I wouldn’t have liked it otherwise.


50 . + – Superb ability to sense when the class had difficulty with the

s ubject matter, and to adjust accordingly.

– = Does not always advise class of the number of cases to be

discussed in the next few classes–caught us by suprise!

…. C – This should be a 6 unit, 2 semester course . 51. + Brings out many issues, and people happy to contribute (not

afraid of being ridiculed for contributions).

C It would be nice to start classes in l aw school at 10:00

instead of 9:00.


52. + – His knowledge of the subject of civil procedure.



53 . + His preci sion in explaining complex issues and presenting both

sides of an argument.

His failure to guide class when students continue with

irrelevant comments.

c –


54 . + He is intent on us learning the actual rules .

Goes past our get out time nearly everyday.

c 55. + – Ability to explain cases in simple terms.

Sometimes cuts off interesting side discussions. (I know there

is a time limit t hough.)



56 . + Facilitating class discussion; energy brought to teaching is


= Excellent teacher; occasionally vague re current policy and

practices in legal field .

C – Difficul t course to master in one semester-a l ot of material;

r eally better spread over whole year.

57. +-Discussions with Prof. Letwin are always provocative and

challenging. Very fair, pleasant, concerned man.

We need more of his t ype! !

C I hope I have more classes and Profs like Civil Pro and Letwin!