Template for a Departmental Supervisory Workshop

Graduate supervision varies dramatically by discipline, by capstone, by degree. The best advice for new or struggling supervisors is from their own peers.

You may wish to adapt this template for developing your own supervisory workshop at the academic unit level. 

Pre-Workshop Survey (may be part of the RSVP process: What questions do you have about graduate supervision? What issues have come up for you in the process of  supervising students or postdoctoral fellows?)

Introductions: Opening Round (how many students, at what stages)

Opening Discussion: What kind of supervision did you have? What kind of supervisor are you?

Basic Principles Presentation or Discussion (circulate the CAGS document)

Distribution of Case Studies (if this is a workshop with faculty AND graduate students then divide these two groups now and make sure to appoint a note-taker, reporter for each group)

Case Studies (separate page)
Breaking into small groups, ask the groups to answer the following questions:

  • What went wrong?
  • Why did it go wrong?
  • What might have been done to prevent the situation?
  • What can be done now to rectify the situation?

Return to the whole group to discuss. When the groups have reported in on their work. Pose questions to build on the discussion such as: what practices do we use in our academic unit that might lead to these sorts of issues? What practices or policies in our academic unit seem to result in misunderstanding or conflict between supervisors and students?