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Working with and managing your relationship with your supervisor(s)

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Presentation on theme: "Working with and managing your relationship with your supervisor(s)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Working with and managing your relationship with your supervisor(s)
Dr Sunil Kumar, Dean of Graduate Studies Louisa Green, Research Degrees Manager 15 November 2012

2 Today’s workshop aims …
Explore and understand roles and responsibilities in the student-supervisor relationship. Consider issues that may arise and think about how to overcome them. Discuss techniques for working with your supervisor and managing your relationship.

3 Roles and Responsibilities
Take 5 minutes to rank your views on the statements shown in the ‘Expectations in Supervision’ questionnaire. In pairs, discuss your rankings and agree a position representing each of your views for each category.

4 Regulations on supervision
What do the School’s Regulations say? Who do they apply to? What happens if they are not followed?

5 Regulations: what (where) they are
School level Regulations for Research Degrees revised from Student Charter revised from Handbook for Supervisors and Doctoral Programme Directors new from Nov Departmental level PhD Student Handbook

6 Regulations for Research Degrees | 1
On supervision models (paragraphs 12-14) Every student is entitled to a lead supervisor who: has knowledge of a student's subject area and theoretical approach; is a permanent member of the academic staff of the School; has passed major review; is usually assigned for the duration of a student’s programme; has no more than eight primary supervisees Every student will normally have additional supervision that may take the form of: co- or joint supervision that can include supervision across departments in the School; an adviser; or team supervision

7 Regulations for Research Degrees | 2
On contact with supervisor (paragraph 15) Full-time students have the right to see their supervisor at least three times a term in the first year and twice a term thereafter Part-time students have the right to see their supervisor at least twice a term in the first year and once a term thereafter

8 Regulations for Research Degrees | 3
Supervisor also involved in: Approving requests to change registration status Progress review (paragraph 19.1) Upgrade to PhD (paragraph 23.3) Ethics process (paragraph 28) Examination entry/nomination of examiners (paragraphs 37-40) Attendance at viva examination (paragraph 47) Supporting period of corrections following examination result

9 Regulations for Research Degrees | 4
If there are serious problems (paragraph 16): the Doctoral Programme Director or Head of Department may agree a change – initiated by the initiative of the student or supervisor.

10 The Student Charter | Your Responsibilities
Behave ethically Attend meetings with supervisor to discuss progress and any concerns Attend/participate in classes, seminars, lectures, other events Keep department informed of essential absences Manage learning responsibly Understand good scholarly practice Submit work by deadlines Seek and respond to feedback on written work

11 Living up to the idea … ?

12 What issues might arise … ?

13 Potential issues for STUDENTS …
Lack of guidance Lack of availability Insufficiently critical Too critical Lack of knowledge in subject area

14 Potential issues for SUPERVISORS …
Overly dependent Lack of honesty Unresponsive/elusive Lack enthusiasm Don’t follow advice Oversensitive to criticism Lack commitment

15 BASIS of issues … Lack of communication Mismatched expectations
Personality clash Competing pressures

16 Overcoming issues | 1 Keep expectations realistic Be organised
Be professional Be open, flexible and honest

17 Overcoming issues | 2 Discuss expectations at the beginning
Give sufficient notice for requests Draw up an agenda for your meetings Record the outcome of meetings and to supervisor(s)/use PhD Logbook Arrange next meeting ahead of time Alert supervisor(s) to problems as they arise

18 Overcoming issues | 3 If problems persist: Approach
Your supervisor (if possible) Your department’s doctoral programme director/convenor. Your Head of Department … If issue is not resolved, you should approach Research Degrees Manager and (or) Dean of Graduate Studies

19 PG Dean & RDU Manager| Contact details
Dr Sunil Kumar, Dean of Graduate Studies OLD.1.07 | | PG DEAN SURGERY (Term Time) Monday & Wednesday Appointments via Nicola Morgan, Executive Assistant | | Louisa Green, Manager, RDU TW | |

20 Be aware of your supervisor’s other responsibilities
Undergraduate Tutees (8+) and courses MSc Supervisees (8+) and courses Class teachers for undergraduate courses Other PhD students (6) Research assistants and research staff Publications Administrative role within the Centre, Department, School Other Professional roles – Editor, Referee for journals, Conference, External Examining (PhD, Masters degrees) …

21 Why should you manage your relationship with your supervisor(s)?
She or he probably busier than you think they are He or She may not be aware of regulations to extent you are Your enthusiasm and organisation may impress them You want to complete on time with as few problems as possible She or he will be your key reference for future jobs etc.

22 When submitting work to your supervisor
Cover sheet on every piece of work submitted with: Your name and year of PhD Your up-to-date thesis title An up-to-date chapter structure with full headings Highlight where today’s chapter or bit of work fits within this Ensure each chapter first page has: Chapter number Full current title Details of word length, plus any missing element(s)

23 Writing is the driver of good supervision
Writing clarifies your thinking Conversation sometimes masks differences in view or misunderstandings Your supervisor gains information about your progress and thinking from your written work Supervisors cannot comment usefully on your progress, or provide sound advice, unless they can see your thought process in writing

24 Summary of KEY POINTS Keep to time (meetings and tasks)
Be honest and open with your supervisor(s) about your progress Ensure that you provide your supervisor(s) ample time to comment on your work given their other commitments. Respond to comments (feedback) as constructively as possible Seek advice or support as soon as you think something is beginning to affect your progress Be aware of the regulations as they apply to the different stages (years) of your PhD

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