Professor Pedersen is the best professor I have ever had. Not only is she one of Columbia's most eminent faculty members, but she's also a devoted teacher who really cares about her students. She had me worried on the first day of class when she advised that we drop if we had writer's block, but when I was having trouble on my essays she would meet with me with just a few hours notice.
I would take anything I could with her. Most everyone (everyone?) in the class took it because they had some personal connection to Ireland already. All that being said, this was not necessarily my favorite course at Columbia. It is basically a survey course taught as a seminar, so it favored breadth over depth. The readings are, for the most part, the broad strokes of political history. I could see some people liking that, but others might not, so it's worth keeping in mind. The assignments were all good and reasonable. We wrote three papers – one using parliamentary papers, one using a longer primary source, and one research paper. She is a very fair grader.