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Pretty easy, overall.
I would recommend this course because the knowledge Professor Shaw has about Shakespearian literature is priceless. Calling the course "Introduction to Shakespeare" can be a bit misleading though, because I feel as if I received a whole lot more than an introduction to the author's work. This class was a very refreshing elective away from my major, and learning it from a professor that is actually interested in the subject and enjoys it immensely made it a lot more interesting and fulfilling. Overall, I can definitely say that it was one of my favorite classes at NC State.
I gained a real appreciation for Shakespeare's work, and an actual deep understanding beyond what I ever got learning about Shakespeare in high school. I love how Dr. Shaw included clips from renown plays and movies in his lectures, to help illustrate some of the points he makes, and to add some memorable visuals to the lectures. By the end of the course, you leave with a really good comprehension of the complex themes at play in Shakespearian literature, an in-depth analysis of the characters, and the historical climate which existed during Shakespearian times and influenced his writings.
Hours per week:
Advice for students:
I was able to get an A plus in this online 5-week summer course, by doing a few things each week. First, I would read the assigned play(s) for the week. Then, I would read SparkNotes afterwards, just to make sure I understood everything correctly, and to gain further insight and read analyses on characters and events. Then, I would watch all of Mr. Shaw's lectures, thoroughly, and take very detailed notes. I personally wrote down what he said word for word, but I'm pretty sure you could be fine just paraphrasing. When you write your weekly summary blogs, do not be afraid to make them as long as you want them to be. Mr. Shaw is not one of those lazy professors who dislike it when you write too much, and actually appreciates the time you put into it. Make sure you write the weekly summary blogs as summaries of the lectures, not as summaries of the plays themselves. The weekly quizzes are extremely easy multiple choice questions, if you read the plays and listen to his lectures. Overall, the class is very straightforward and does not in any way try to trick you, and if you put in the time and actually do the work, you can score very highly in it.