Nurturing Researchers Webinar Q & A #3

Categories: Focus Series, Instruction, MethodSpace Live!, Other, Research Skills, Supervising and Teaching Research Skills and Roles, Teaching

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The MethodSpace focus for August was on teaching research methods, and we’re continuing in September with resources on mentoring, supervising, and guiding researchers. You can find the whole series here.

Q. Could you talk more about the personal nature of guiding researchers?

JES. It will take more than one post to answer this question! Let’s start here: generosity is central to the  personal dimension of mentoring. As mentors, we need to be willing to share what we know, what we’ve learned from study, and importantly, what insights have come from trial and error.

Stories are one way to share what we know. Stories help to connect the dots between points mentees gather on their own, or from the literature. I wrote “Crafting meaningful stories to bring research methods to life” for the Textbook and Academic Authors Association blog, so take a look!


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One thought on “Nurturing Researchers Webinar Q & A #3

  1. It is a personal process indeed, whether one is guiding researchers as part of a formal relationship (such as supervision which I focused on) or in more informal support spaces (such as the online research support group that Alice spoke about).

    We all have histories and experiences as students, supervisors and researchers. What one is guiding researchers towards is likely to differ depending on the context. For me, I am guiding postgraduate researchers towards writing a thesis and becoming practitioner-researchers. It’s about understanding who my students are and their needs. But I am also a mentee in other spaces myself, such as the research support group and I am guided by more experienced researchers in relation to things that I request guidance on. For example, I am in the process of completing an ethical clearance proposal for a project and reached out to folks I regard as mentors for feedback to help me to strengthen it.

    I find it helpful when people share their experiences with me, so I am aware that others may be able to learn from me when I share my experiences with them.

    In my capacity as a supervisor I often share my own experiences from when I was a student and even now was an emerging researcher. Willingness to expose one’s vulnerabilities differs from person to person. We’re not just being generous with sharing things, such as articles or books, it’s about generosity about sharing our experiences and the belief that this might help somebody else. Some people are not comfortable sharing stories of their own experiences if they think this might impact on how the person being guided may perceive them.

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