Supporting educational researchers of the future

Year: 1994

Author: Johnston, Sue, Broda, Juliana

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Education, social sciences and the humanities have been nominated for their long completion rates and high drop-out rates for postgraduate research students. Although these trends result from a number of factors, one consideration must be the quality of postgraduate supervision and the ways in which supervision is modified to cater for the particular needs of postgraduate students within these disciplines.

This paper will report on a CAUT-funded project in which postgraduate students and supervisors in a Faculty of Education worked collaboratively to enhance the quality of postgraduate supervision using an action research process. As well as detailing the process used in the project and some of the outcomes, there will be examples given of some of the difficulties encountered by postgraduate research students and supervisors involved in the project. An emphasis in the project has been an in-depth exploration of the process of supervision as it is experienced by individual supervisors and students. The analysis in this paper will reveal practical ways in which the quality of postgraduate supervision in education might be enhanced. The future of educational research relies on inducting our postgraduate students into a positive research culture, and Faculties of Education have a major responsibility to be aware of the ways in which postgraduate students are experiencing the process.