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In the rare event he teaches a class at this school again...don't walk, run from this professor. I'm all for a laid back learning environment, but he took it to new extremes. I can count on two (possibly one) hand the number of times class went the full session. We outright missed several classes. I've never in my educational career seen a professor miss as much class and my impression of him was that he really didn't care about the class or whether we learned Contracts or not. All the material was covered of course, but as to the quality of the class I can't say it was first rate. And to top it all off he is a rather tough evaluator. Thanks to the Examples & Explanations Book and a patient judge on my co-op I think I've filled the holes in my educational experience, but I would love to explore the idea of a partial tuition refund, because my money was definitely wasted on this professor's "services"...

I completely agree. This was an astoundingly bad class. (Though I have to admit, there were some who appeared perfectly pleased with it most of the time.) If only it had been possible to run from this train wreck - but this was 1L, where we had no choice.

The man has the attention span of a gnat. In the middle of an explanation, in the middle of a sentence, he suddenly decides to tell everyone about his weekend plans. Or his new walking shoes, fer godssakes. He poses a question and calls on a student; and as she begins to answer, he cuts in with "Hey! Is it hot in here?"

Yes, it's hot in here. That's because we're in HELL!

The last straw was a class scheduled to end at 3:30, which Bishop decided he would end at 3 pm. At about 2:55, as we're plowing through some case on outhouses or icehouses or tomato crops, a student raises his hand. Bishop looks at him; looks at the clock on the wall. Looks back at the student, and says, "Are you sure you want to ask a question now, because that might put us over our time?" WHAT THE F---??? Even the students usually receptive to his antics did a double-take at that.

And the book, oh my god, the book! What a disaster. Co-authored by the master, naturally. Very little commentary/analysis: mainly excerpts from the UCC and the Restatement, plus endless cases that could have been pared down to the essential 3 pages with just a little effort and thought on the part of the authors. Sloppy, un-spell-checked, confusingly laid out - every page screamed complete disregard & disrespect for the student. An insult to the reader, day after day. Ugh.

If it weren't for the Barbri review, I might not have realized I managed to learn some Contracts despite this idiocy. However, learning the stuff on the curriculum was not much help as far as the final exam was concerned. Yes, part of it was take-home. But it addressed advanced & obscure concepts in Contract Law theory, and was quite harshly graded to boot.

I don't want a refund. I want an explanation. How the hell did this guy get asked back to teach here????

Okay, I want a refund too.

I disagree with the comments above. Yes, Bishop had an eccentric style of teaching but he did care about contracts and the class. I have that other professors have similar eccentricities but they don't teach L1. I think the people above like to have their education spoon fed to them and can't deal with taking some responsibility for their own education. Every day he asked we had questions and would be willing to discuss issues. Anyone who had a question and didnít ask only has themselves to blame.

We did miss several classes but we covered the material by have double classes. I for one appreciated not having to make the classes up on Friday afternoon. By the way the reason he miss those classes was that he was involved in actual contract policy in the real world.

Anyway throughout the semester I was amazed by how inflexible and annoying some be in the class were about Bishop and the class. Case in point: people actually objected to a take home test.

Bishop was a great professor. It is ridiculous to criticize him because he didnít spend every allotted minute of every scheduled class spoon feeding the intellectually challenged the black letter law you can get from Barbri or Examples and Explanations. Yes, his book was nothing but a collection of cases, but learning the law is supposed to involve reading and analyzing cases without having everything pared down to three page essentials. As for cutting students off, it was quite refreshing to see a professor not always have the patience to deal with the wrong answers or inane questions that consumed so many of my classes.

For what it's worth, I can see how people could differ about Bishop. He's definitely the type of professor that you either love or you hate. I for one did not like his style of teaching, and while I understand and respect the above reviews, I wouldn't call myself someone who requires "spoon-feeding" or "black letter law" to learn. But I believe that as a 1L, I had enough on my plate without having to worry about the teaching style of professors like Bishop. I personally did not care about the exam, the constant short classes followed by double classes were annoying but not overly so, but I just left each day with a general impression that Bishop really didn't care whether you understood the subject or not (with the rare exception of a few select people he constantly called on or answered questions from).

And his book, let's fact it, really sucked. Even if it was just cases, there was no index, the selection was poor (evidenced by the fact that he would assign cases and then skip them because they "weren't important"), and all it gave you was black letter law. No notes or discussions like you typically see in a law book which can give you cites to informative and perhaps educational secondary sources. And the damn bookstore wouldn't buy it back.

All in all, I would say Bishop was fair, and at times quite poor. If he ever returns and teaches an upper level course, I would be extremely skeptical about taking it.

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Last edited November 23, 2004 1:43 pm ET (diff)