Document Type

Conference Object


Education | Higher Education | Higher Education and Teaching | Training and Development

Publication Details

Presented virtually at the 6th International Conference on Higher Education Advances (HEAd’20), Universitat Politécníca de Valéncia, June 5, 2020.


Research supervision is the highest level of teaching for academics. Yet, in many cases, academics are allocated supervision without any formal training. For many supervisors, their supervision approach will be a mirror of what they have experienced themselves at post-graduate levels. Many supervisors consider that this form of teaching is stressful and onerous due to the responsibility placed on it by the Higher Education Institution and the student ultimately. What can be done to support supervisors in their supervisory journey? There is a void in the academic literature on research supervision with scant aids available to the supervisor (Cullen, 2009). Brew and Boud (1995) outline the importance of instructor knowledge; however, supervisors only gain extensive supervisory experience over the years. The aim of this study is to better understand the supervisory process. Data was gathered from 12 lecturers engaged in supervision across various disciplines. Findings indicate that supervisors need to adopt and continually change to differing circumstances and different student personalities while supervising. It is essential that formal supervisory training be provided for all supervisors. The findings from this evaluation are novel and will be beneficial to research supervisors across various disciplines.