Signup date: 24 Feb 2011 at 2:56pm
Last login: 26 Aug 2011 at 4:30pm
Post count: 16
Thanks for all your advice everyone. I did manage to meet with him in the end, but he just made me feel worse and I ended up spending a crazy few days working all hours trying to get the work done that he had suggested. The upgrade panel 'highly commended' this work in the event though, so maybe he does know what he's talking about (unless he had some behind the scenes insight into what the panel was after as it did seem to come out of the blue!). I passed and it was all fine though, so maybe I just need to get on with it and stop listening to him! He made me laugh yesterday by instructing me to do something that I myself had suggested last time I met him, but passed it off as his own idea! I think you're right Sharkbit, maybe it's part of the job description to have a big enough ego to be able to declare things in such an assertive way that they sound completely authoritative and sensible even when they're total rubbish! Ah to have that confidence and not to worry all the time that every word that comes out of my mouth will expose how stupid I secretly am!
Does anyone have any advice about what to do in this situation. I guess it's pretty common. My supervisor has told me he is too busy to look at my work or meet me, but I have my upgrade exam coming up shortly. He did make one comment about something that I should add to my report, but to do so would require lots of extra work that I don't have the time to do now and I don't really understand what he even meant fully. There's no way that I can ask him for clarification though as he's too busy. I just feel so helpless and stuck, but it's not like I can demand a meeting with him. I'm I being unreasonable and is this quite normal supervisor behaviour?
Does anyone have any tips for how they get motivated? When I started at the end of last year I managed to put in a decent day's work generally. Maybe it was blind panic propelling me forward! Although the panic is still there now, but my mind seems to spend far too much time being blank and useless! I feel so tired each day even though I'm not even doing anything much, just wasting time. Does anyone have any tried and tested ways of getting out of a slump and over the writer's block? :-(
I have the same problem from time to time. A particular individual in the room next door rushes in periodically, starts gossiping loudly and shrieking with laughter for half an hour and then barges back out slamming the door, but weirdly the others in the room are a lot quieter and don't seem to say much back so I'm not sure why they don't ask her to be quiet! I have no idea what to do - so I just tend to pack up and go home when she arrives! The email thing sound like a good idea though - would be interested to know if it works if you try it.
======= Date Modified 15 Mar 2011 17:43:36 =======
Hi Lindalou. I recently posted a similar thread, so just wanted to say how much I sympathise, though your situation sounds a lot worse, especially concerning your supervisor's innappropriate email comment. He really should be showing you more support and understanding about your bereavement. I'm sorry not to be able to offer much advice, but one thing I found helped was talking to my other (main) supervisor. He disagreed with most of the harsh criticism that my difficult supervisor had been dishing out and this support buoyed me up enough to realise that at least some of the criticism was useful and could be taken on board (in my case at least - not saying its the same for you). I still find this guy difficult, but I know that his behaviour stems from ego issues so I try to take what he says with a pinch of salt (though this is really hard to do when he's being sarcastic and mean!). Perhaps having a chat with your other supervisors might help? Especially if you think they're on your side and not happy with his behaviour? Really hope you find some way of getting it sorted out.
This might sound a bit odd, but I listen to recordings of stuff like waves & rain, etc. when I'm in my office at uni as the people in mine & the next office can get a bit noisy. It kind of works like white noise to drown out sounds, but without being distracting like music would be!
Hi Keenbean! Thank you very much for your advice. I feel really embarrassed now that my first post on here was such a moany one, but so nice to know I'm not the only one who experiences problems like this. You're totally right about having four experts to call on. I've read some of the other posts on here and feel a bit silly now given how so many other people just want some feedback of any sort from their supervisors! It's just so demoralising when you find yourself at the centre of lots of rather large egos all wanting you to do things their way and all telling you that your way is rubbish! Will try to look on it a bit more positively. Sorry to hear about your paper feedback - it's so annoying when you can't get the message across that it's just a DRAFT!
This is the first time I've posted on here, but I just wondered whether anyone might have had any similar problems to the ones I'm experiencing with my multiple supervisors?
I am student in the humanities studying a really broad topic that incorporates lots of sections of my discipline. I have four supervisors (honestly!) all who are specialists in one of these areas. I already knew and worked with three of these prior to starting the PhD and whilst I got on well with two, I did find one quite difficult to deal with (I will call him A) and worried they might cause problems for me. Ironically though this one has been really supportive and helpful, whilst it is one of the ones that I liked (B) who is causing the most problems!
My fourth supervisor (C) is my main supervisor and we get on well, though I didn't know him prior to starting. He asked me to produce some basic, brief pieces of work just to help to familiarise me with all these different subjects before I go into any more detail. I duly did this and sent one of the pieces to my difficult supervisor (B) to look at as this was his subject area. However, he seems to have treated it like a draft chapter rather than a brief introductory essay and totally pulled it to pieces, suggesting that it is far too basic, my reading is limited, my arguments flawed, etc, etc (the list is never ending). Of course I knew this was the case when I handed it in, but only a superhuman could have produced a rigorous, well argued, comprehensive piece on such a huge topic from scratch in a couple of weeks and I don't think my main supervisor intended me to do this! Plus, despite usually being my own harshest critic, I'm not entirely sure it is quite as horrendous as he makes out. However, my problem is that this guy has suddenly leapt into his supervisory role with enthusiasm since receiving this piece to comment on, even though he's only really supposed to have a background role. I have been issued long reading and general 'to do' lists (on his subject area only mind). This, combined with the pompous and rather rude way in which he phrased his comments, have really worried me as it feels like he is trying to prove something (he is younger than the others and never supervised anyone before). I just haven't got the time to do all this and it is mostly superfluous to my PhD from what I can see - I haven't got weeks to spend becoming the world's leading expert on everything there is to know about his subject when I have dozens of other things to get to grips with. My main supervisor hasn't commented on the piece and seems to have disappeared, whilst supervisor A has had a look, says it's fine and is pressurising me to get on with something else!
Sorry for rambling on. I just wondered if anyone else has had any similar multiple-supervisor problems & how they cope??? I feel so stressed, ill & am getting nothing done as I just don't know where to go from here or whose work I should be getting on with.
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