Laura R. McNeal

Professor of Law


Dr. Laura McNeal is currently a Professor of Law where she teaches Civil Procedure, Education Law, Urban Revitalization and the Law, and Employment Discrimination. Her scholarly interests examine issues of access and equity in employment and education law, with a particular emphasis on issues of access and equity for individuals from traditionally marginalized populations. Professor McNeal has contributed to the national debate on law, education policy, and race relations through op-eds and radio and television news features for the Dr. Phil Show, CNN, MSNBC, CBS, NBC, and various other national media outlets. 

Dr. McNeal has worked with the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School for 8 years where she conducted national empirical legal studies that explore issues of access and equity in education, employment and criminal law. She also conducted a national prosecuting attorney study through her work with the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute that examined prosecutorial decision-making and incentive structures. She also began her anti-bias work while at Harvard where she helped write the curriculum for anti-bias workshops offered through the Institute. Dr. McNeal has published extensively on the intersection of bias and the law and currently conducts anti-bias workshops for educators, students, lawyers, judges, non-profit organizations and various other sectors. Additionally, Dr. McNeal has served as an invited speaker and panelist at several conferences such as the Law and Education Institute at Penn State University Dickenson School of Law, and Harvard Law School’s, Advocates for Education Conference. Recently, she served as an Expert Witness for the Indiana Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights: Hearings on School-to-Prison Pipeline. She has received numerous fellowships, honors, and awards, including the prestigious University of Louisville’s Distinguished Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholarship, the Washington University Employment Law Achievement Award and a two-year Stafford Faculty Fellowship for the National Institute on Leadership, Disability and Students Placed at Risk. Lastly, Dr. McNeal was inducted into the Illinois State University Hall of Fame for her innovative work in the area of education law and policy. During the summer she serves as a Guest Lecturer at Columbia University where she teaches a Law and Ethics course. 

Prior to teaching at the Brandeis School of Law, Professor McNeal served as an Assistant Professor of Urban Education in the highly recognized Department of Teacher Education and Educational Policy at Michigan State University. She also served on the faculty at Georgia State University where she taught education law, policy and leadership courses. While at these institutions, Professor McNeal helped develop the curriculum for a $5 million education pipeline program grant to help at risk students successfully matriculate into college. Additionally, during her career, she has contributed more than 35 peer reviewed articles, book chapters and presentations to the education field.