The Paradox of Faculty-Student Interactions

69(1) J. Legal Ed.36 (2020).

12 Pages Posted: 17 Nov 2020 Last revised: 2 Jul 2021

See all articles by Meera E. Deo

Meera E. Deo

Law School Survey of Student Engagement (LSSSE); Southwestern Law School; American Bar Foundation

Date Written: June 1, 2019


Women of color in legal academia have a complicated relationship with students, as evidenced by empirical data. Most of these professors have strong positive relationships with students from all backgrounds. In fact, this accessibility can result in service overload with constant student meetings and events that are rarely acknowledged or rewarded by colleagues or administrators. Furthermore, the few students who push back in the classroom and on course evaluations not only drain the energy and effort of their women of color professors but also shroud the learning environment in tension and negativity. This Essay sheds light on this paradox, including solutions to improve not only the experience for women of color faculty but also legal education overall.

Keywords: Legal education, law faculty, law students, faculty diversity, student evaluations

JEL Classification: I00,I2, I21, I23, I24,

Suggested Citation

Deo, Meera E., The Paradox of Faculty-Student Interactions (June 1, 2019). 69(1) J. Legal Ed.36 (2020)., Available at SSRN:

Meera E. Deo (Contact Author)

Law School Survey of Student Engagement (LSSSE) ( email )

1900 E. Tenth Street Eigenmann Hall
Suite 419
Bloomington, IN 47406-7512
United States

Southwestern Law School ( email )

3050 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90010
United States

American Bar Foundation ( email )

750 N. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

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