April 10, 2008
"What the Best Law Teachers Do"
Posted by Gordon Smith

Michael Hunter Schwartz is writing a book about law teaching, which is evergreen fashionable. He is only in Phase 1 of the Project (collecting nominations), but this looks like it could generate some interesting discussion.

Over this past year, I have been working with the BYU Center for Teaching and Learning on new teaching strategies. Our experiments have produced mixed results, from my perspective, but I am encouraged to continue studying and experimenting.

One keeper: student teams for in-class discussions and in-term assignments. I will write more about this after the semester is complete and I have graded the assignments and read the evaluations, but a substantial body of research supports the value of team-based learning and a number of my students have offered positive oral reports. I need to get more comfortable using teams, but I like the fact that students are actively engaged during class, rather than being (mostly) passive participants.

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