The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate 'apparently ordinary' people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people.

Dr. K. Patricia Cross



Dr. K. Patricia Cross

A legendary educator who spent her life improving higher education, Dr. K. Patricia Cross led a distinguished career as a university administrator, researcher, and teacher. Author of eight books and more than 200 other publications, she was the recipient of multiple honors, including election to the National Academy of Education and receipt of the Howard Bowen Distinguished Career Award from the Association for the Study of Higher Education.

Despite Dr. Cross's preference to not draw attention to herself, this page honoring her is included at the insistence of Elizabeth Barkley, Claire Major, and Terry O'Banion. We believe that the world needs role models who can inspire subsequent generations to live lives of dignity, substance, and service.

Pat Cross is such a role model. She has been one of the greatest contributors to higher education of her generation. Her powerful legacy, grounded in scholarship that focuses on the reform of both policy and practice, must be preserved and celebrated.

It is the incredible honor of the K. Patricia Cross Academy to do just that.

Read More About Dr. K. Patricia Cross

Legend & Legacy

An influential thought leader and best-selling author, Dr. K. Patricia Cross’ powerful contributions to higher education have benefitted an entire generation of students and have been recognized with no less than fifteen honorary degrees. Discover how her legacy continues to make a positive impact across college and university classrooms.

A "Reasonable Adventurer"

Inspired to shake up the status quo, Dr. K. Patricia Cross was always motivated by a natural sense of adventure. Get to know the inventive mind behind many of the most transformative movements in higher education over the past several decades and even still today.

Learning can occur without teaching—and often does—but teaching cannot occur without learning; teaching without learning is just talking.

Dr. K. Patricia Cross