05 The Supervisor-Student Relationship


Published on

Theological Research Methodology: Presentation 5

Published in: Spiritual, Education, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide
  • Do negotiate the terms of your working relationship. Ask him what his expectations are of you. Also ask what he is able to commit to do for you. For example, under normal circumstances how long will he need to respond to an email query? How long to evaluate a chapter submission? By the way, the amount of time it takes a supervisor to evaluate a chapter depends largely on how good (or bad) the chapter is. The weaker the chapter, the longer the feedback takes.Don’t expect your supervisor to spoon-feed you. He may suggest some good resources you should consult, but don’t expect him to provide you with a comprehensive reading list; that is your job. She may make some editorial corrections on your manuscript, but don’t expect her to be your editor; that is your job. You are a postgraduate student undertaking an independent (guided) research degree.Do initiate interaction with your supervisor. She is not thinking about your thesis day-in and day-out. She cares that you pass and she is available to help where needed, but you have to drive the process.Do what your supervisors tells/asks you to do. If he asks you to make a number of corrections, make them – properly, thoroughly, carefully! Don’t return it with a half-hearted attempt to make a handful of the easier changes.Don’t treat your supervisor like a half-wit. She is not an idiot. If she asks you to read a complicated 500-page book and then resubmit your proposal, don’t send the revised draft 6 hours later; she knows you can’t have read and processed the book that fast. When she points out that your thesis needs to be 150 pages instead of 80, don’t return it with the same number of words, but large font, double-spaced instead of 1.5 spacing, and character spacing.
  • 05 The Supervisor-Student Relationship

    1. 1. By Kevin G. Smith The Supervisor-Student Relationship Theological Research Seminar
    2. 2. THE RELATIONSHIP Part 1
    3. 3. The Role of the Supervisor • The supervisor as project advisor. • The supervisor as academic guide. • The supervisor as quality assurer. • The supervisor as pastoral supporter. At the PhD level, the role of the supervisor is more that of a colleague and advisor than one of being a subject-matter expert. From the beginning, you will know more about your topic than your supervisor will. He will be able to advise on technical and methodological issues, and discuss the content with you, but he will not the subject expert.
    4. 4. • Diligently study all prescribed materials. • Carefully apply your supervisor’s advice. • Initiate contact and request meetings. • Abide by the approved research proposal. • Work on your thesis diligently and steadily. The Role of the Student
    5. 5. • Rule 1: dignity, respect, and courtesy • Rule 2: no harassment • Rule 3: accessibility • Rule 4: privacy • Rule 5: honesty Research Ethics
    6. 6. Secrets of Success Do • Negotiate the terms of your working relationship. • Initiate interaction with your supervisor. • Follow your supervisor’s advice. Don’t • Rush ahead without your supervisor’s permission. • Expect your supervisor to spoon-feed you. • Treat your supervisor like a half-wit.
    7. 7. THE COVENANT Part 2
    8. 8. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 1) I shall provide guidance about the nature of research, requirements of the degree (including the nature and extent of an ‘original contribution’), standards expected, choice of research topic, and acquisition of the requisite research skills.
    9. 9. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 2) I shall guide you in the preparation of a research proposal that complies with the requirements of SATS. I shall do this initially by discussing your research idea with you, and later by offering detailed feedback on draft research proposals. I shall only feed back on draft proposals three times; the fourth draft must be suitable for submission to the postgraduate committee.
    10. 10. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 3) I shall keep a written record of supervisory meetings: in particular, of agreed work plans and of actions which need to be carried out by the supervisor and by you, the postgraduate student.
    11. 11. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 4) I shall hold you accountable to the completion dates agreed in your research proposal, and request periodic progress reports.
    12. 12. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 5) I shall respond requests for comments in a timely manner, typically two working days for email communications and two weeks for feedback on written submissions (e.g. a draft proposal; a draft chapter). When I am unable to keep these response times, I shall notify you.
    13. 13. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 6) I shall make myself available for periodic meetings at your request; the meetings may take place in person or via online conferencing technologies.
    14. 14. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 7) I shall monitor carefully your performance relative to the standard required for the degree, to ensure that you are made aware promptly of inadequate progress or standards of work, by specifying the problems and discussing ways of addressing them.
    15. 15. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 8) I shall assist you in the development of research and writing skills, but I shall not serve as your editor.
    16. 16. Supervisor’s Responsibilities 9) I shall provide academic feedback on your thesis chapters on a sliding scale; that is, I expect to provide substantive feedback on the earlier chapters, but only minimal feedback on the later chapters (towards the end of the process you should be working quite independently). I shall comment on a chapter a maximum of three times.
    17. 17. Student’s Responsibilities 1) You must heed my academic advice, and diligently make all required changes or corrections. 2) You must discuss with me your expectations concerning the kind of guidance and feedback you wish to receive. 3) You must commit to work steadily on your research, and to inform me if for some reason you are unable to do so for an extended period.
    18. 18. Student’s Responsibilities 4) You must keep to the chapter submission dates proposed in your research proposal. If for any reason you find yourself unable to meet the deadlines, you should notify me so that we can renegotiate the dates. 5) You must share and discuss with me any major change or refinement to the research project.
    19. 19. Student’s Responsibilities 6) You must not undertake any field research without my explicit approval to proceed with it. 7) You must submit one chapter of your thesis at a time, and await my permission to proceed with the following chapter. 8) You must take responsibility for editing your work properly before submitting it to me for feedback.