The architectural design studio uses one-to-one critique sessions as its basic instructional method. Due to this dialogic nature of learning in the studio, instructor-student relationships are more complex and intense. The purpose of this study is to research the phenomenon of empowering by obtaining from student?s verbal descriptions their perceptions of empowering and restrictive interactions with their instructors. The essential structure of an empowering interaction was extracted from these descriptions by phenomenological analysis. Findings of this phenomenological study emphasize the value and importance of research on instructor-student interaction in the studio. The student reflection on the action of interaction revealed that, it is not only what the instructor does in the physical acts of instruction and guidance but what the instructor is. Being existentially present or available, commited, showing genuine interest in the student as a valued individual by really listening and supporting through nurturing acts is considered by the students to be one of the most important aspects of empowering.