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Eska
Sunday, 6 July 2008 at 9:51pm
Thursday, 12 October 2017 at 7:11pm
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page 1 of 104 recent posts

Thread: This silly PhD is getting me down!!!!!

posted
08-Jul-08, 01:09
edited about 11 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
aloha, where are you doing your PhD?, it sounds fabulous

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 23:26
edited about 19 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
I'd really like some advice on how people have avoided letting their supervisors walking all over them - any offers?

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 23:13
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
thanks swantje. I have told the head of dept. about this and got alot of sympathy and acknowledgement of what kind of person my sup is, I just hope this translates into support in assessment. I'm seeing the HOD again. Yep, next time I will not be such a sucker...

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 23:09
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
mmmm, yes, I think I have done for about the past year. A family bereavement and my own illness have left me on autopilot for about a year. The shouting and throwing out incident happened because I'd had enough and asked to be absolved of responsibilty for my sup's mistake at first sup lied, but then admitted to the error but threw me out of the office. She did not like me developing a spine so, how do I go forawrd until I find a replacement? I really want to pass my first year, I have some really good possibilities elsewhere, but want to move with a good record.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 21:58
edited about 9 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
Just wondering, has anyone out there experienced any combination of a supervisor shouting at them, telling them to get out of their office and that they should think about looking for another sup? All trust is gone and I am dreading our next meeting. He/she also forgot what my main suject was and a vital piece of equipment for some assessed work (which I was subsequently blamed for) I have to get through this until I find another sup, how, how, how? Please don't try and justify this, I have run through the possibilites of my own responsibility and although I am not perfect I can find no justification for this.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 19:46
edited about 10 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC, unfortunately, unlike a PhD supervisor I do not get paid to reply to your thoughts and observations and therefore have no requirement to respond in a responsible or professional manner. I am not your mentor. I looked up this thread because I am having very serious problems with my PhD because of bad supervision, so bad that I am going to leave. I hoped to find some much needed moral support and to feel that I amnot alone in this. I found your attempts to justify the behaviour of my supervisor extremely counter-productive. This is a discussion for students who are trying to cope with this very real and very destructive problem.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 18:52
edited about 11 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
I'd lay off those poor souls who have been given PhD places even though they aren't up to it, they'll be wading through pits of despair already. Throwing entirely negative criticism at them isn't going to make them bright enough to complete, they will act grateful, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t festering inside. These people need the sandwich method more than anyone BHC.

BTW BHC, writing is the only area in which I have had any useful feedback about my work and I know that could have come cheaper than a grand. I’m also wondering what you are hoping to gain or contribute from this discussion between PhD students, are you looking for insight into the PhD’s perspective? Are you trying to persuade us all to tolerate bad supervision? Bad supervision is the major obstacle to a timely finish. It is not wise to try to persuade us to tolerate it via attempts to justify it. I do very much value your input, but can’t help wondering about your motives.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 18:52
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC: Yeah, the City and Guilds teaching post 16s course is good for instilling some good ideas for all kinds of teaching, including the kind of mentoring that happens at PhD level, but I haven't found it that useful when applying for HE teaching work: I got more sessional work before I started the teaching qualification. Maybe it's different for permanent posts, although judging by the ignorance about teaching which abounds in H.E., maybe not.

I really think the most important thing you can bring to the role of supervisor is basic human respect towards another adult; and to remember you are in a position of responsibility, if only in terms of the fact that you are somebody's mentor.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 13:01
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC: All I am doing is answering your comments, and if you look back it is you who set yourself up as as representative in defence of the actions of my opwn supervisor and that of others. And I am doing something about it, which is what I said in my first post, one which you had plenty of objections to. If anyone in my department asked me what I thought of my supervisor I would say something tactful, maybe 'firm but fair', there is now ay I could express all this without annonymity. I know not all supervisors are like this, that is why I am moving to another one. Goodluck with those students of yours who are progressing slowly. BTW, why do you accept students if you don't think they are up to finishing a PhD?

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 11:22
edited about 12 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC, yes, I understand that most supervisors don't have any teacher training, but there are things called common sense and professionalism which should also act as a guide. I also understand you have alot of other concerns in your role but we are not your whipping boys. Where you say the large part of the feedback you give is to intervene if someting goes wrong, well it is still advisable make that sort of criticism in a constructive way, the sandwich method really does work and you might find your students less demoralised and more productive as a result. This could and should be a win win situation.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 11:05
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
To justify behaviour which in other professions would be termed bullying as the only way supervisors can manage stress because they can't afford the same quality of holiday as banker really is silly. There are all sorts of working environments which are stressful and it is up to the professional to find ways of managing that. Most industries recognise the inertia and lack of respect such behaviour induces in all concerned. Believe me, you can afford a much better holiday than I (this year my 'holiday' constitutes spending a day at a conference at which I am presenting)and look on the bright side, if you holiday in the UK you will avoind the stress of foreign travel.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
07-Jul-08, 11:03
edited about 1 second later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC the word 'taught' as I am sure you know, has a pretty broad range of meaning and it is appropriate for an apprentice to say they were taught alot of skills by their mentor. I do expect my supervisor to guide me about generic skills such as writing, presentation and structure and if he/she were an expert in the field I would expect some guidance in the subject matter at the early stages (where I am). Otherwise, what on earth is a PhD supervisor for? I don't need contacts, I already have plenty of those. I am very clear about what I should expect from supervision and am not confusing PhD work with taught courses.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
06-Jul-08, 22:20
edited about 28 seconds later
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC Wouldn't it be better to speak to the student and tell them you think they are not working hard enough, or whatever the problem is, instead of trying to communicate this via some coded behaviours which only supervisors seem to know about? If students don't know why this is happening they won't know what they are doing wrong and will become confused, blocked and demoralised hence even less productive.

I am a part time PhD student and have been told I am on the right track for the stage of my PhD I am at, but also only receive negative feedback from my supervisor, and publicly at that. After forgetting an essential piece of equipment that had been promised for a piece of assessed work my supervisor publicly criticised me and my work for about forty five minutes. As a self funded PhD student, the idea that I am paying someone to teach me badly and hinder my progress in this way is infuriating and I will leave as soon as I can.

Thread: Dealing with very demanding and critical supervisors

posted
06-Jul-08, 22:15
by Eska
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posted about 12 years ago
BHC it is really interesting to hear a supervisor's point of view on this, because I have been wondering what on earth could have been motivating the behaviour of my suprvisor over the previous six months. To be fair, and frank, I don't see how giving exclusively negative criticism can be constructive for either party unless you are trying to get rid of a student, or if a supervisor is trying to eleviate some of their own personal stress. There must be something positive about the work they're producing and anyone who has completed teacher training will tell you that ignoring those aspects is destructive for all the reasons given in the above comments, and because a student will be left not knowing what they did well and are therefore less likely to recognise it.

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