Dr. Rachel Treloar joined Keele University as Lecturer in Law in January, 2019. Before joining Keele Law School, she taught at the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University (Canada). Rachel holds degrees from the University of Victoria (BA, MA) and Simon Fraser University (Interdisciplinary PhD: Sociology, Public Policy and Law). Prior to undertaking doctoral studies, Rachel worked as a family counsellor and ran a community agency program for separating/divorcing parents and their children. Prior to that, she worked in the health and mental health fields. In addition to her own research, she has undertaken Research Assistant work in the following areas: lone mothers and social inclusion, childcare and family caregiving policies.


Research and scholarship

Rachel’s research involves the intersections of family law, social policy and lived experiences. She is particularly interested in: post-separation parenting and conflict, access to justice, court users perceptions of justice, gender relations in family life, childhood, care work, neoliberalism and austerity politics, the third sector, critical and comparative approaches to policy analysis, life course research, qualitative research methods, concepts of agency and vulnerability, power, autonomy, voice, and ethical issues in research and practice.

Using an interdisciplinary lens and drawing on critical socio-legal and feminist approaches, her research to date has involved two strands. The first drew on policy documents and legislative debates to follow the development and implementation of British Columbia, Canada’s Family Law Act. Once the Act was in force she also examined case law to assess how the Act worked in practice, especially focusing on access to justice and the broader services required by families in crisis. The second body of work comprised her doctoral research, entitled ‘The Construction and Transformation of High-Conflict Divorce Involving Children. This research was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (Doctoral Fellowship) and the Law Foundation of British Columbia (Graduate Fellowship).

Rachel’s current focus involves disseminating her doctoral research and further exploring issues of voice in the context of legal disputes concerning children.

Rachel is happy to supervise postgraduate research students in the areas of family law, child law, gender and law, and law and policy reform. Rachel is also interested in supervising interdisciplinary research, research involving a critical socio-legal and/or feminist perspective, and research that is concerned with issues of voice, agency, vulnerability, care and/or autonomy.

Further information

Memberships at Keele

Centre for Law, Ethics and Society (CLES) at Keele

Keele Institute for Social Inclusion (KISI)


Professional Memberships

International Society of Family Law

Socio-Legal Studies Association 

Research Committee on Sociology of Law (ISA)

• Family Law and Policy Working Group Member (Subgroup of the International Working Group on the Legal Professions)

• Gender and Law Working Group



Treloar R. (forthcoming). ‘My problem, my solution’? Private ordering and self-help in British Columbia, Canada. In Digital family justice: From Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to Online Dispute Resolution (ODR)?. Oxford Hart Bloomsbury.

School of Law
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