Praise and encouragement goes a long way towards building confidence in laboratory work

Charlotte Slaymark is a Technician at the University of Glasgow, and holds the UKCGE Recognised Associate Supervisor Award.

The Auditorium

By Charlotte Slaymark, Biogeochemistry Technician and PhD Candidate, University of Glasgow

A person with long hair adn heir back tot he camera, engages in scientific work at a lab bench

Supervision may be the most important aspect of a postgraduate’s experience during their masters or PhD programme. Supervisors are there to teach, guide, develop, support, and empower postgraduates into becoming independent researchers and highly skilled people. The experience is formative, and it is likely the candidate will remember it for their entire life.

Supervision in physical sciences often comes from several people to provide different expertise, training, development, and support. I think it is important all aspects of supervision are considered for a successful postgraduate experience which is why I took time to reflect on my supervisory practice by taking part in the UK Council for Graduate Education Associate Supervisor Award.

This blog piece is about my day-to-day experience as a research technician (and part time PhD candidate), supervising on post-graduate projects in the School of Geographical and…

View original post 532 more words

Empowering researchers through ‘experienced uncertainty’

Ruth Albertyn and Kathy Bennett are both affiliated to Stellenbosch University in South Africa where they are involved in supervision and research development. Based on their research expertise in doctoral education and postgraduate supervision (Ruth) and experienced uncertainty and identity development (Kathy), they conducted a collaborative auto-ethnographic study to gain insight into the sources and …

The curriculum hidden in different ways of doing

Kelly Preece’s article over on the Hidden Curriculum blog covers practical ways to support the development of criticality and independence, as you help PGRs to identify a structure for their thesis.

The hidden curriculum in doctoral education

Kelly Louise Preece is the Researcher Development Manager and Research and EDI Manager at the University of Exeter. You can find out more about Kelly on her website, or listen to her podcast Researchers, Development and the In-betweens on Apple Podcasts,Spotify,Amazon Music,Google PodcastsandStitcher!

Ceramic mugs of various colours arranged on a grid patterned shelf.

When I started my role as Researcher Development Manager at the University of Exeter, I inherited a (prolific) collection of PowerPoint slides for training sessions on everything from conducting a literature review to writing an academic CV. Despite the prolific nature of these materials, I was struck by the vagueness inherent within them. This is in no way to criticise my colleagues and as I immersed myself in the resources I had inherited, I found so much that was useful, insightful, and important for postgraduate researchers.

All materials emphasised the need for researchers to take responsibility for their…

View original post 1,011 more words

Growing Professional Doctorate programmes – overcoming the challenges of supervision when your team is small

This is a guest post by Dr Dan Butcher (@Dan_ButcherOBU), Course Lead for the Professional Doctorate in Nursing at Oxford Brookes University, and supervisor for both PhDs and professional doctorates. Photo by Leon on Unsplash There are a number of subtle (and not so subtle) differences between PhD and Professional Doctorate programmes and the doctoral student experience is dependent on the …

Community Acuity (34): How do you supervise part-time doctoral researchers?

This is a guest post by Dr Louise Harris (@Dr_Weez) an audiovisual composer and Senior Lecturer in Sonic and Audiovisual Practices at the University of Glasgow, where she supervises a number of doctoral researchers, many of whom choose to study part time, for a range of different reasons.  In this video, she shares her reflections …

Community Acuity (33): Crossing international borders, potential for confusion

This is a guest post by Kristina Areskoug Josefsson, Professor in Public Health and Rehabilitation, VID Specialized University, Norway & Associate Professor in Quality Improvement and Leadership in Health and Welfare, Jonkoping University, Sweden and Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway. After being a PhD-supervisor a couple of years in Sweden and Denmark, and now working in …

A space free from the many pressures and distractions of mid-life and mid-career

This is a guest post by Professor Dan Davies, Director of Higher Education Management Programmes, University of Bath School of Management. The Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) in Higher Education Management at the University of Bath is now in its 20th year. Attracting academic and professional services managers and leaders from around the world, we now have …

Community Acuity (31): The cost of academic mobility

‘Community Acuity’ blog posts are from supervisors, to supervisors. They share the thoughts, experiences and reflection of the highs and the challenges of supervising doctoral students. This is a guest post by Dr Cally Guerin, at The Australian National University. Cally is a co-editor of the excellent DoctoralWriting blog, and see also her recent article on the career transitions of PhD graduates in …

Community Acuity (29): Don’t be a tyrant motherf*cker

‘Community Acuity’ blog posts are from supervisors, to supervisors. They share the thoughts, experiences and reflection of the highs and the challenges of supervising doctoral students. This is a guest post by Dr Alejandro Pérez-de-Luque, at the Andalusian Institute for Research and Training in Agriculture, Fisheries, Food and Ecological Production (IFAPA), in Spain. My general approach to supervision is centred on …

Community Acuity (28): learning what not to do as a supervisor

‘Community Acuity’ blog posts are from supervisors, to supervisors. They share the thoughts, experiences and reflection of the highs and the challenges of supervising doctoral students. This is an anonymous guest post from a colleague in Canada. Photo by Dane Deaner on Unsplash A job interview for a Professor position finally came almost exactly one year after I’d graduated. The key question …