My role as a senior law lecturer is both intellectually challenging and rewarding. I deliver
lectures and seminars to students ranging from their 1st year to master’s level at Royal
Holloway, University of London. I really enjoy engaging in interesting discussions with my
students, especially as I observe how quickly they progress from ‘knowing’ the law to
demonstrating a ‘critical’ appreciation of it, including developing ideas of reform.
It takes time and careful thought for each class or lecture that is taught, with hours of
unseen preparation, including creating and selecting materials and activities that will engage
and challenge the students, whilst providing support and guidance in how to tackle
assessments. Other activities that I undertake will involve writing and marking assessments
and providing support to my personal tutees.
My role, however, is not just limited to teaching students, it also includes preparing
students to leave university life as professionals. The term “graduate ready” has attracted
enormous attention over the years. One way that I have seen a lot of my students develop
these key professional skills is through their participation of our Legal Advice Centre, where
they interview and advise ‘real clients with real problems’. My role involves supervising
these students as they undertake live client work.
There is no typical day within academia and one day will vary from the other, which makes it
The best part of my job?
The most rewarding thing about my job is watching the first-year students enter university life filled with questions and leave as confident young professionals.
What do you need to qualify as an academic?
Most academics will have a degree, a masters level degree and a Phd, or equivalent
professional qualification (such as being a qualified solicitor, or psychologist).
Academics tend to be specialists in certain areas of interest, and can have combined
focuses, such as teaching, research or practice.
Why does diversity in the workplace matter?
A diverse workplace within academia is absolutely vital to the ongoing contribution of
excellent ideas and knowledge, both nationally and globally. We must engage with our
diverse student body that is genuine and meaningful, and we can only really do this by
having a diverse workplace that truly reflects the students that we teach, and ultimately
help nurture into working professionals. Diversity in a workplace means that we all learn,
and after all this is what university life is about!
Nicola Antoniou, MPhil (Cantab), FHEA, Solicitor-Advocate
Senior Law Lecturer/Director/Supervising Solicitor of Royal Holloway’s Legal Advice Centre,
Co-founder of NDSN Limited