Dissertation Advisor

Dissertation Advisor-19
Advisors do not take a class in how to be an advisor.Consequently, they tend to put students through the same process they went through themselves, and it may not have been a good model. “You can call me Bob.” An advisor who insists that the student call him/her by their first name is a red flag.There are bad thesis and dissertation advisors in every institution of higher education in every part of the world.

Advisors do not take a class in how to be an advisor.

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New faculty members may be more interested in making a good impression on their new colleagues than in moving a student through the process in an expeditious manner, and the result can be an endless round of corrections and additions to a thesis or dissertation as they try to turn out a perfect piece of work on their first try.

Also, they may never have managed a graduate student, and lack the skills to do so.

There are several books about the process available on

The unspoken rules of the graduate process keep students blind from the beginning. When in graduate school the dean of the graduate school, not the dean of the college, is the dean presiding over the graduate student.

Advisors who have a string of publications on their records and several research projects may look good on paper, but they do not necessarily make good advisors because graduate students may be at the bottom of their priorities.

They have little time to spare, are almost never in their offices, every meeting is hurried, and their trips to conferences and meetings can keep a student from making deadlines. An advisor who fails to apprise a student of 1) the ground rules of the department or graduate school, or 2) the ground rules of their personal process for moving a student through research and writing a thesis or dissertation.

This arrangement is one of the checks and balances in place to protect graduate students from abuse.

The position of graduate dean is often a part-time appointment in addition to a regular faculty role.

In large part, departmental value to the university is based upon how many students they graduate per year.

For instance, if a philosophy department only graduates one or two students a year, the department may be eliminated through programmatic reduction, including all faculty, tenured or not.

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