Date of Award
Morgridge College of Education, Higher Education
Christine A. Nelson
Discourse analysis, Diverse law students, Law school, Legal education, Motherhood studies, Mothers
Mothers are an increasing student population in higher education but an extensively under-researched population. While research examining motherhood is limited, the dearth of studies examining motherhood in higher education is especially limited, with even less available in the legal field and the institutions that provide legal education. This study examined how mothers in law school made meaning of their experiences utilizing a postmodernist epistemological framework, postmodernism and performance as a theoretical framework, and critical discourse analysis as a methodology. Data collection took place over the 2022-2023 academic year. Eight mothers participated in this qualitative study representing a range of ability status, age, demographic, socioeconomic, and racial diversity. Findings from this study indicate that there are safe and unsafe discourses on motherhood, systems of power frame the student-mother law school experience, there is a culture of law school and the legal field, and the culture of law school does not support mental health. This study also presents recommendations for research, practice, and policy to various law school stakeholders on increasing equity for mothers in law school.
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Sarah M. Jordon
Received from ProQuest
Jordon, Sarah M., "Mothers in Law: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Mothers in Law School" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2357.
Higher education, Gender studies, Law
Available for download on Saturday, December 13, 2025