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Career blogs

What does ‘good supervisor’ mean to you?

When you pursue a Ph.D., its often quite a journey that will continue for the next 3, 5, or 7 years of your life. This why it is so important to meet a good supervisor for your project, but before that, you should know what does ‘good supervisor’ mean to you?

Good supervision is essential for a successful Ph.D. journey. While Ph.D. researchers are encouraged to solve problems and come up with innovative ideas, they often require the guidance and support of their supervisors to overcome obstacles that cannot be solved with a simple Google search or a day in the lab. The availability and engagement of supervisors play a key role in this process. If a supervisor is not available or engaged, it is difficult to expect miracles from the researcher.

Respect is also crucial in the relationship between supervisors and Ph.D. researchers. A supervisor who understands that their students have a life outside of their research and respects their personal commitments is more likely to build a positive and productive relationship with their student. This includes understanding that there will be days where long hours are required, but also times when a break is needed for personal or mental health reasons.

Supervisors who are supportive, offer advice and encourage students to be their best are more likely to foster a successful research environment. PhD researchers often require advice on various aspects of their research, including equipment, procedures, and research direction. Additionally, supervisors who care about their students on a personal level, and not just in terms of producing data, are more likely to build a strong relationships with their students.

Good supervision is multi-faceted, and there is always room for improvement. The basis of a successful Ph.D. journey is built on the foundation of a strong relationship between the supervisor and the Ph.D. researcher. By prioritizing availability, engagement, respect, support, and advice, supervisors can help ensure their students have a successful and fulfilling Ph.D. experience.

A quick piece of advice, you should always use the opportunity to communicate with your upcoming colleagues about how your supervisor is before you agree to start the project. This way, you can obtain valuable insights regarding your future supervisor.

Written by Anastasiia Kirilenko
Image generated by Craiyon AI
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