Thursday, 6 November 2014

Heartbreak in the PhD: My supervisor is breaking up with me!

I'm heartbroken. I never thought this would happen to me. My supervisor is breaking up with me. We have seen through a Master's thesis together and he has been my rock. How could he take up a post at another University let alone in another state?!

I text my Principal supervisor in a daze. She said there was no need to panic and we would sort it out. The positives are it isn't her that's leaving and I only have to find a new co-supervisor. Thinking more clearly now, my supervisor has introduced me to some great academics so it shouldn't be a problem. It's just that I had rapport with my co-supervisor and a relationship built up over years. 

This post has now led me to: what should I look for in a supervisor?
I believe choosing a supervisor is key to a good working relationship and completing your thesis.
Luckily for me, choosing and asking an academic to be my co-supervisor is made easier because I have already started my PHD, I know some academics in my school and it is a co-supervisor I need not a Principal supervisor so they won't have the bulk of the supervisory part.

Things to look for in a supervisor:
Personality - would you be able to work with them?
Number of research students they have seen through to completion 
Number of students they currently have under their wing
Expertise in your field- look at their publications 
Position- go for the experienced and highly regarded member of the academic staff

Is there anything you would add?

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