Doctoral students at a distance? 20 ideas to support institutions and supervisors

This is a guest post by Dr James Burford (@jiaburford), an Assistant Professor of Global Education and International Development at Warwick University in the UK, Dr Katrina McChesney (@krmcchesney), a Senior Lecturer in initial teacher education at the University of Waikato in New Zealand, Professor Liezel Frick (@FrickLiezel) based in the Department of Curriculum Studies …

Being open to critique, transparent in your motives, and when needed, step out of the way

This is a guest post by Manuela Schmidt, currently working at Jönköping University and Linneaus University and Erika Hansson, of Kristianstad University. Manuela and Erika met during their respective doctoral programs. Manuela in health science and Erika in psychology. After reaching ‘the other side’, both with PhD’s after their names, they decided to ignore the …

The doctoral supervisor as methodological mentor: postgraduate methodological journeys

Dr Timothy Clark (@DrTimothyClark) is a Senior Lecturer, Supervisor and Researcher in Education and Childhood at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol). The selection, and coherent application, of methodological approach is often highlighted as one of the most challenging aspects of doctoral study. In my own experience, as an EdD student, the …

‘Fail early and fail fast’: the value of research groups for breaking and rebuilding ideas

Dr Kirstin Wilmot is a senior lecturer and coordinator of the Higher Education Studies Doctoral Programme in the Centre for Higher Education Research, Teaching and Learning (CHERTL) at Rhodes University, South Africa. This post is based on her 2021 research paper ‘Fail early and fail fast’: the value of group supervision for doctoral candidates. Many …

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 …

Trust grows when supervisors take the lead in online supervision

This is a guest post by Dr Michele Jacobsen, Dr Sharon Friesen, and Dr Sandra Becker, higher education specialists at the University of Calgary. The rapid and widespread pivot to online teaching and supervision in the pandemic has created a pressing need to improve understanding of effective online supervisory relationships. Our case study research with …

In Defence of History – the changing context for supervision

This is a guest post from Professor Alistair McCulloch, Head of Research Education, University of South Australia. Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash If Jane Austen had been writing about PhD supervision, she might well have begun her account: ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged that the PhD, and the expectations placed on both student and …

Festive Five!

By Dr Kay Guccione, Blog Editor. Happy holidays supervision fans! Here below is your Festive Five. It’s the top 5 most highly read SupervisingPhDs blog articles from 2021. To support PGR wellbeing, focus on building a strong relationship by the University of Lincoln’s Dr Trish Jackman (@Trish_Jackman), Principal Investigator on the Getting Off to a Mentally Healthy Start in Doctoral …

The ‘sliding scale’ of supporting candidates with the literature during doctoral studies

This is a guest post by Dr Julia Everitt a post-doctoral researcher, supervisor and facilitator of supervisory development programmes at Birmingham City University (BCU). Photo by Wesley Tingey on Unsplash This post discusses a practitioner inquiry that I undertook, investigating how supervisors support candidates with the research literature during doctoral studies. Below, I describe this …

Launching the Are You OK? supervisor toolkit

By Dr Kay Guccione I've been part of a fantastic research collaboration between the University of Glasgow, The University of Sheffield and Heriot Watt University. Our research has now completed and from our findings we have designed a toolkit for doctoral supervisors, that aims to enable good conversations around mental wellbeing and research degrees. Find …