The University believes that supervision is an essential part of the process that enables students to realise their full potential during their time at York.
In order to assist academics in the delivery of good supervision, the University has created a very useful resource page for the supervision of taught students. Follow the link below to access information, advice, guidance, and support, arranged around six key themes.
Taught Student Supervisor Resource https://www.york.ac.uk/staff/teaching/themes/supervisor/
Because of the value attached to supervision, the University’s governance regulations include a section on it (Regulation 6.3), and the University also has a more detailed policy on supervision. The content of Regulation 6.3 is outlined below, with full details of all the University’s ordinances and regulations being available at: http://www.york.ac.uk/about/organisation/governance/governance-documents/ordinances-and-regulations/
University Regulation 6.3, which covers supervision requirements, states the following:
The University’s policy on supervision lays out what students can expect from the University, and importantly, what they can expect from their Department.
Full details of the University’s policy on Supervision are not included here, but can be accessed at: https://www.york.ac.uk/staff/supporting-students/sources/supervisors/
In relation to their Department, the University’s supervision policy informs students that they can expect their Department will provide clear and appropriate arrangements for their supervision, and that their Supervisor will:
The primary focus of supervisors is on the academic progress of the student, and the resolution of any issues that are affecting that progress. The following simple five-point plan provides a basic template for supervision meetings.
As supervisors we will:
As supervisees you will:
Supervisors will be provided with a supervision calendar that outlines key aspects of information that students should be aware of, by term and year. Discussions about attendance, the non-submission of work, and any welfare problems should be part of every meeting.
Discussions about attendance
Supervisors are to inform their supervisees about the importance of attendance. Attendance at lectures is strongly recommended and attendance at small group seminars/classes is mandatory. Students should inform their class or seminar tutor if they are unable to attend and try to attend an alternative. Students who are ill must self-certify. See www.york.ac.uk/students/support/health/selfcert/
Failure to attend is often the first indicator of academic and/or welfare difficulties. Consequently attendance is closely monitored by class/seminar tutors, and students are required to sign in. When a student has missed two seminars without appropriate notification or self-certification, the Department Secretary will send out a Failure to Attend (FA) notice, and invite the student to contact the Student Services Manager for assistance. Three FA notices will result in a ULA, or Unacceptable Level of Attendance notice, which will be placed on the student’s file and can be used when writing references. Supervisors will be advised when these notices are issued and provided with a summary of them at the beginning of each term.
Discussions about the non-submission of formative work
Supervisors are also to inform their supervisees about the importance of formative work. Class/seminar tutors will advise the Department Secretary about the non-submission of any formative work required by class/seminar tutors during the term. This information will also be collated by the Department Secretary and given to supervisors at the beginning of the following term.
Discussions about employment
Careers Adviser appointments can be booked through the Careers Gateway athttps://york.targetconnect.net/home.html, and advice is available at www.york.ac.uk/students/work-volunteering-careers/. Supervisors should encourage students to take control of their career planning from Year 1, and consider the benefits of using the Employability Tutorial (ET), accessed from the vle at https://vle.york.ac.uk. The Careers Office has produced a guide for supervisors that explains the ET and gives advice on how to encourage students to use it. ET crib sheet for supervisors (PDF , 262kb).
For more specific information about careers in Accounting, Banking and Consultancy, a number of named contacts are available to give help and advice. Post York Career Awareness Final (PDF , 77kb).
The ‘Common Problems’ webpage is a good resource to recommend to students as it provides advice on a range of issues around health and wellbeing. See https://www.york.ac.uk/students/support/health/problems/. Supervisors should also encourage students with welfare difficulties to take full advantage of appropriate organizations on campus. Student Support Services provides advisers and practitioners to support students with a range of problems from money matters to disability, housing, immigration, academic progress, childcare etc. Located in the upper tier in Market Square, they are also the first point of contact for the Open Door Team, a multi-professional team giving support to any registered student experiencing psychological or mental health difficulties. Supervisees should visit Student Support Services Hub, Market Square, telephone 01904 324140 or email firstname.lastname@example.org YUSU also provide a wide range of services for students experiencing difficulties. Supervisees should contact the Advice and Support Centre either by email at email@example.com or drop in and see them in James College.
Queries about Mitigating Circumstances, Leave of Absence and Assessments
Some problems make it difficult for students to undertake their academic studies effectively. If supervisors think this might be the case, they are to refer the supervisee to the Student Services Manager who can advise them about the routes that are available. While for some supervisees an application for Mitigating Circumstances may be sufficient, other problems may require supervisees to postpone their University studies for a period of time, that is, to take a leave of absence.
Supervisors are also asked to refer specific questions about assessment to the staff in the Examinations Office, who are best placed to give current and accurate advice. Please remember to ring or email the relevant members of the administrative staff to advise them that you are refering a student to them.
Special Cases and Disciplinary Meetings
If a supervisee has to appear at a disciplinary meeting, or before the University’s Special Cases Committee, the supervisor will be asked to provide appropriate written evidence, and may be called upon by the student to accompany her/him to that meeting. See Regulation 7.2.3 in the University’s Ordinances & Regulations. The following link to the Academic Misconduct webpage may also be useful.
Supervisors have a duty to ensure that a supervisee knows of this right. In relation to the process of appeal, supervisors are allowed to attend Standing Academic Misconduct Panel (StAMP) meetings to provide emotional support and help a student understand the process, but cannot advocate on their behalf. Supervisors may wish to inform their supervisees that the Students’ Union can and do provide advocates in such situations, although they cannot attend in place of the student, only with them present.
Dr Paola Zerilli is available to provide support for any member of staff who would like to discuss issues relating to supervision. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
As Supervision Co-ordinator, Maria Garcia Reyes talks to new students about supervision in the Department, and provides a forum for students who, for whatever reason, are, or feel, unable to contact their supervisor during term time. Students should email Maria (email@example.com) for an appointment to discuss any issues around supervision.
There is an informal procedure for changing supervisors. Supervisees should contact the Student Services Manager, the Supervision Co-ordinator, or the Chair of the Board of Studies to request a change.
Note: This page is intended to provide information that relates specifically to Department practice on supervision. Resources provided by the University for the support of supervision are available through the Supervisors’ Resources pages, a link to which is provided above. However, if there is anything you feel it would be helpful to include please inform Maria Garcia Reyes, Supervision Co-ordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org