Effective Teaching in Higher Education

Brown, G. and Atkins, M. (1988)

London, Methuen.


Research and project supervision is probably the most complex and subtle form of teaching in which we engage. It is not enough for us to be competent researchers ourselves—though this is vital. We need to be able to reflect on research practices and analyse the knowledge, techniques, and methods which make them effective. But there is a step beyond even this. We have to be skilled in enabling our research students to acquire those techniques and methods themselves without stultifying or warping their own intellectual development. In short, to be an effective research supervisor, you need to be an effective researcher and an effective supervisor.

In this chapter the issues involved in supervising research students are explored. Although the chapter is primarily concerned with the supervision of postgraduate research, many of the suggestions and guidelines are also relevant to the supervision of undergraduate projects.

The chapter provides an outline of official reports and studies of research supervision and their implications. It provides a model of the factors involved in research supervision. It considers the role of the supervisor and the problems faced by research students. The management skills required for effective supervision are discussed and some suggestions for examining dissertations and theses are provided.

Cite this text

Brown, G. and Atkins, M. (1988)

Effective Teaching in Higher Education.

London, Methuen

Visit the main UK Council for Graduate Education website