Past Event details

Boundary crossing in international doctoral supervision: contexts, cultures and confluences

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

The hauntings of doctoral supervision in post-colonial contexts

Dr Barbara Grant, University of Auckland/Te Whare Wananga o Tamaki Makaurau, New Zealand

 History always figures in doctoral supervision: wanted or not, ghosts from the past come back to haunt supervisor, student and thesis. In this paper, Dr Grant draws on white supervisors’ talk about supervising indigenous students in the context of Aotearoa/New Zealand. She will identify instructive accounts of white supervisor identity that are, in different ways, sensible to the hauntings of our colonial history. While these identities entail tricky blindspots, they also allow supervision on the white-indigenous hyphen to flourish, perhaps because they embrace, rather than refuse, history’s ghosts.

Supervisors as boundary brokers: Issues and good practice in cross-cultural supervision 

Professor Gina Wisker University of Brighton

Research students settling into a cultural and geographical context that differs from their own can be puzzled by tacit knowledge about research and writing, as well as ways of relating to their supervision. Drawing on her own and others’ research, Professor Wisker will consider the supervision of research students from cultures that differ from her/our own, and expose and examine how, in culturally-inflected learning behaviours, contexts, and topics, doctoral supervisors act as boundary brokers for the recognition and facilitation (or otherwise) of, inter alia: culturally-inflected modes of learning, knowledge construction, topics, and thesis assessment formats.


Supervising non-UK doctoral candidates: Mutual experiences and learning opportunities

Professor Vernon Trafford, Anglia Ruskin University, UK & Stellenbosch University, South Africa

 Doctoral supervision combines trust and communication. However, additional dynamics appear if a candidate and supervisor(s) possess different mother tongues, cultural traditions and educational expectations. Adopting a supervisory auto-ethnographic approach, Professor Trafford will demonstrate how diverging or complementary cultural values influence supervisor-candidate relationships. Artefacts will be displayed to exemplify 'customs in practice' and research evidence will illustrate success, assumptions, misunderstandings, intercultural relationships and viva outcomes. Supervisor-candidate relationships will be interpreted through inter-cultural dynamics, psychological contracts, power/authority (transactional analysis), plus learning traditions and scholarly responsibilities.

Network: International Research and Researchers
Date(s): Wednesday, 16 September 2015
Times: 12.00 - 15.45
Location: SRHE, 73 Collier St, London N1 9BE
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Event Files
File Details Download
Barbara Grant presentation
The hauntings of doctoral supervision in post-colonial contexts.
Gina Wisker presentation
Supervisors as boundary brokers: Issues and good practice in cross-cultural supervision.
Vernon Trafford presentation
Supervising non-UK doctoral candidates: Mutual experiences and learning opportunities.
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