The Professionalism of Research Supervision

Join us for this webinar discussing the professionalisation of research supervision and introducing the Good Supervisory Practice Framework and the Research Supervision Recognition Programme — developed for the postgraduate sector, by the sector, to support supervisors as they navigate an increasingly complex area of academic practice.

The webinar will be led by the internationally recognised authority on the development of research supervisors and author of the Good Supervisory Practice Framework, Professor Stan Taylor, Honorary Professor in the School of Education at Durham University.


If the adage that ‘if one can do research, then one can supervise it’ was ever true, then it is certainly not the case today. Developments such as massification, structuration, diversification and capitalisation have fundamentally transformed the knowledge and skills required of supervisors. So, as Griffith and Warren (2016: 167) have written:

What once seemed a relatively simple role that could be learned experientially… a role that was played out within a ‘secret garden’ or ‘private space’ has now become a highly complex set of roles which must be learned quickly and then played out within a multi-featured landscape and moulded by a variety of influential stakeholders.

These changes have been recognised by research supervisors themselves (see, for example, Halse and Malfoy (2010: 80)) but this has not necessarily been recognised by institutions or by research sponsors, to whom it can remain a ‘labour of love’.

The lack of support and appreciation can be very dispiriting for supervisors. As one supervisor (quoted Taylor and Clegg, forthcoming) put it:

“I’m drowning in doctoral students and their dissertations. I have so many that I have a hard time keeping count, and the university doesn’t count them in my workload… So the not being recognized element really hits home.”

In response to this issue, the UK Council for Graduate Education (UKCGE) has made four innovations; the establishment (with the Times Higher Education) of national awards for outstanding supervision; the creation of a national research supervisors’ network; the production of a sector-supported Framework for Good Supervisory Practice; and the implementation of a programme to provide recognition of such practice.

What to Expect

The purpose of this webinar is to outline the last two of these developments. The objectives are to:

  • Consider professionalistion and the need for recognition.
  • Look at the UKCGE Good Supervisory Practice Framework.
  • Outline the UKCGE supervisor recognition programme.

The programme will be:

1pm Introduction
1:05 Professionalisation and the need for recognition
1:15 Developing and trialling the framework
1:20 The Framework for Good Supervisory Practice
1:40 The Recognition Scheme
1:50 Questions
2pm Close


The facilitators will be Ian Covey, Marketing and University Liaison Officer, UKCGE, Dr Douglas Halliday, Chair of the UKCGE, Dr Owen Gower, Director of the UKCGE, and Professor Stan Taylor, who worked with the UKCGE on the development of the Framework and the recognition scheme. Melita Kovacevic, Vice Chair of PRIDE will give a short introduction.

Cited Literature:
Halse, C. and Malfoy, J. (2010) Retheorizing doctoral supervision as professional work. Studies in Higher Education, 35, 79-92
Griffith, d. and Warren D. (2016). Effective supervision, in Enhancing Teaching Practice in Higher Education, ed. Polkorny, H. and Waren, D., Sage Publication, 165-185

The event is finished.

Hourly Schedule

New Day


Nov 23 2020


UK Time
12:45 PM - 2:00 PM



More Info

Read More


Online Event
UK Council for Graduate Education


UK Council for Graduate Education