Law Teacher - Jenny JarvieA law lecturer who uses popular culture to ‘take the stuffiness’ out of legal jargon has won a prestigious teaching award.

Jenny Jarvie was named joint winner of the ‘Law Teacher of the Year 2016’ category in the Northern Law Awards, held at the Crowne Plaza in Newcastle.

The awards are designed to showcase and celebrate legal talent across the region, and winners had to demonstrate evidence of innovative teaching practices, interest in student development, student satisfaction, student engagement skills, and the ability to enhance student learning experience through scholarly activities.

The category Jenny won jointly with Elaine Campbell of Northumbria University is open to any law teacher working in a higher education institution in the North of England.

Jenny, who joined Bishop Auckland College in 2014, has a first class Honours Degree in Death Investigation, an MSc in Criminal Investigation and an MSc in Leadership and Entrepreneurship. She teaches HND Business and HND Public Services lessons including modules in law, biology, psychology, economics and substance misuse culture.

The mother-of-two, from Darlington, runs weekend lectures to accommodate her students, who have full time jobs.

She said: “I teach law modules to business students who need that underpinning knowledge. So I try to take the stuffiness out of it, to put it in layman’s terms and underpin the theory and case law using contemporary cases in the news and even examples from fictional characters on TV soaps. It sounds daft but it works!”

Jenny, who had to meet the judging panel to set out how she felt she met the strict criteria as part of the judging process, added: “When I was nominated I thought ‘well, that’s fantastic’. I never for a moment thought I would be a winner.”

Jenny’s award follows a Quality Assurance Agency Review of the college’s Higher Education provision in March which found it met all four standards. HE courses offered include HNDs, HNCs, Foundation Degrees and NVQ Diplomas.

Principal and Chief Executive Natalie Davison added: “We are delighted for Jenny, winning such a prestigious industry award against a very strong field. Her dedication and determination, and the creativity she has shown in her lessons, is admirable and reflects the high standard of teaching across our curriculum.”

For more information on HE courses offered at Bishop Auckland College visit: bacoll.ac.uk/highereducation