Professor Bridget Crawford Featured in Study of Best Law Teachers

(White Plains, NY)– A new book names Professor Bridget Crawford of Pace Law School one of 26 “best law teachers” in the United States. The book, “What the Best Law Teachers Do” (Harvard University Press, 2013), is the culmination of a four-year study that sought to identify extraordinary law teachers. The study details the attributes and practices of professors who have a significant, positive, and long-term effect on their students.

Professor Crawford was one of 26 professors visited by the book’s authors. The authors observed each teacher’s classroom behavior and conducted lengthy interviews with the subjects and their deans, colleagues, students, and alumni. Most often, according to co-author Sophie Sparrow, the authors left these visits feeling moved, inspired, and excited to make changes in their own teaching based on what they observed and heard.

“What the Best Law Teachers Do” was written by Professor Gerry Hess, Gonzaga University School of Law; Professor Sophie Sparrow, University of New Hampshire School of Law; and Michael Hunter Schwartz, dean and professor of law at the UALR William H. Bowen School of Law.

“The book describes how 26 amazingly dedicated and dazzlingly effective law teachers do their work,” said Schwartz.

“I am delighted that Professor Bridget Crawford has received national recognition for what we have known at Pace for a long time,” says Pace Law School Dean Michelle Simon. “She is an energetic, dedicated, rigorous professor who cares deeply about her students as people and as future lawyers.

“At Pace Law School, we pride ourselves on our commitment to teaching, and Bridget Crawford embodies so many of our highest and best values as a faculty. In addition to being a top-notch scholar and an engaged member of the community, she is a superb teacher. Her expectations for students, class preparation, classroom teaching, and devotion to students are very much worthy of recognition and emulation,” added Simon.

Each chapter of “What the Best Law Teachers Do” focuses on a theme common to the 26 outstanding law teachers.

“The teachers who are profiled in the book work at law schools that represent the full spectrum of ‘U.S. News and World Report’ law school rankings, yet the core of who they are and what they do is quite similar,” said co-author Gerry Hess.

According to Hess, “All of the teachers we studied are regarded as being among the most rigorous professors at their law schools who have high expectations of every student, yet they also are known for their kindness to their students. They foster self-confidence in their students and inspire in them a belief that they are capable of great things. They get to know their students as people and manifest caring and respect for their students. These teachers model hard work, creativity, and humility.”

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