PhD Supervision at Faculty of Engineering, Science and Medicine, Aalborg University

  • Du, Xiangyun (Project Participant)
  • Kolmos, Anette (Project Participant)
  • Heidemann Lassen, Astrid (Project Participant)
  • Kofoed, Lise (Project Participant)

Project Details


Backgrounds: With the impact of globalization, the increase of diversity in contemporary academic world brings about the needs for more capable, qualified, and efficient young researchers. Therefore, training of young researchers becomes an important task and demand facing universities, which are playing an essential role of producing new knowledge for the innovation and development of the society. PhD study involves changes and uniqueness for both students and supervisors. For PhD students, the transition from undergraduate to post graduate study involves changes of working environment, working styles, intellectual status, academic confidence, and probably living style and self/esteem. This demands appropriate ways of providing guidance and supervision, which brings challenges to the professional tasks and academic work of their supervisors who are professors, senior and experienced researchers. In general, research on PhD supervision remains insufficient. Previous studies show that supervisors' lack of attention to process of development in the PhD study, confusion of roles and expectations, interpersonal problems and difficulties in achieving the balance between ‘heavy-handed' dominance and ‘hand-off' neglecting. Therefore, this study has the objective to uncover the PhD supervision practice in engineering and technology from both a students' and supervisors' point of view. Research Questions: What are the criteria for success PhD supervision in engineering and science areas? What are the practices of PhD supervision at Faculty of Engineering, Science and Medicine, Aalborg University, Denmark? How to achieve successful PhD supervision at Faculty of Engineering, Science and Medicine, Aalborg University, Denmark? Aims: The investigation aims to obtain more knowledge about the current situation of PhD supervision; gain richer understanding of any possible difficulties that both PhD students and supervisors confront; identify any possibly existing or potential mismatch between PhD students and supervisors; provide suggestions on how to achieve efficient and helpful supervision in order to maximize the chances of success in completing PhD supervision on time. Research design Time duration: 2005 Nov - 2008 January Methods: survey and interviews - Questionnaires April-May 2006 questionnaire (58 questions) for PhD students initiated by representatives of students and developed by researchers questionnaires (43 questions) for PhD supervisors developed by researchers - Qualitative interviews with 10 PhD students October - November 2006 Conceptual work January - December 2007 This project is partly funded by the International Doctoral School, Faculty of Engineering, Science and Medicine, Aalborg University. Expected outcome: A report that covers the research findings and guidelines for PhD supervisors, conceptual development of the role of PhD-supervisors and development of training activities (for example seminars) for PhD supervisors (and students)

Researchers involved: Anette Kolmos, Professor, Department of Development and Planning Astrid Heidemann Lassen, PhD student, Department of Production (participated in designing the questionnaire for PhD students) Lise Kofoed, Associate Professor, Department of Architecture and Design Xiangyun Du, Assistant Professor, Department of Development and Planning


Effective start/end date01/11/200531/12/2008


  • <ingen navn>


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.