This page details the responsibilities of both Research Students and Supervisors. The information is taken from the Guidance Notes for Supervisors and the Code of Practice for Research Students - both of which can be found on this website.
What are my responsibilities as a Research Student?
You are expected to:
- tackle the research with a positive commitment, taking full advantage of the resources and faciilities offered by the academic environment and in particular contact with the supervisor, other staff and research students.
- discuss with the supervisor the type of guidance and comment believed to be most helpful, the training which might be required, and agree a schedule of meetings.
- attend supervision sessions, meetings, seminars, lectures and laboratory sessions as required by the supervisor or Head of Department.
- aim, by the end of the first year (or 2 years for part-time students), as well as having completed a broad programme of relevant work and training, to have defined the area of research, become acquainted with the background knowledge required and the relevant literature, and have a framework for the future progress of the research with a timetable for the next 2 or 3 years (3 or 4 years in the case of part-time students).
- maintain the progress of the work in accordance with the stages agreed with the supervisor, and take note of the guidance and feedback from the supervisor.
- agree with the supervisor(s) any periods of absence from the University.
- take responsibility for seeking out the supervisor.
- discuss any problems, such as those of access, or conflicting advice, with the supervisor(s) at the time - early discussion and resolution of problems can prevent difficulties later on. (if the students feels unable to raise the problem with the supervisor(s), he or she should discuss the difficulty with a senior member of the department - normally the Head of Department orPostgraduate Tutor. if for any reason this is not felt to be possible, the student should contact the Director of the University Graduate School, via the Student Registry).
- decide when to submit the thesis, taking account of University regulations on minimum and maximum periods for submission, and the supervisor's opinion.
What are the responsibilities of my Supervisor(s)?
The supervisor(s) is expected to:
- explore fully the student's background at the outset, and identify areas where further training (including language training) is needed.
- give guidance on: the nature of research and the standard expected; the planning of the research programme; attendance at apporpriate courses; literature and sources; laboratory techniques; sources of information on intellectual property rights.
- be aware of the particular difficulties faced by many overseas students, who may initially need very frequent contact and advice on facilities, training courses, language tuition, etc.
- check on the student's progress at regular intervals.
- allocate a reasonable period of time for supervisory sessions: a full time student is entitled to at least an hour a fortnight with the supervisor(s) and a part-time student to at least an hour a month. Supervisors should ensure that as far as possible supervision sessions are uninterrupted by telephone calls, personal callers or departmental business.
- deal with urgent problems as soon as possible, either over the telephone, via e-mail, or through a meeting arranged at short notice.
- read and provide constructive comments on any work submitted by the student within a reasonable time period.
- ensure that the student is made aware if either progress or the standard of work unsatisfactory, and arrange any necessary supportive action. If the lack of progress is due to a personal problem a suspension of registration may be appropriate; and this possibility should be discussed with the student.
- carry out an annual reveiw of the student.
- take steps to ensure that the student is given proper guidance on the use of specialist equipment and techniques.
- take an active part in introducing the student to meetings of learned societies, seminars and workshops and to other research workers in the field, and give advice on writing up the research for publication.
- put the student in touch with specialists inside or outside the University if the student's work goes significantly outside the supervisors field.
- inform the student of any periods of absence from the University, so that the student can plan accordingly.
- make supervision arrangements for students whose normal place of research is somewhere other than lancaster, and liaise with any external supervisors.