Supervisors

Every student, undergraduate or postgraduate, on a taught programme has a supervisor*, who is a member of staff in their department. Your supervisor is allocated to you when you arrive and is there to help and advise you on all aspects of life at university. If you are an undergraduate you will meet your supervisor in your first few days here, and there is a formal requirement that you meet every term.

It is hoped that you will become well acquainted, and that you will come to regard your supervisor as a person with whom you can discuss difficulties at any time. Supervisors have three principle functions:

  • to provide advice on and support for your academic progress;
  • to support your personal development and acquisition of academic and employability skills;
  • to provide general pastoral guidance, assisting you to identify appropriate specialist support should you require it.

Your supervisor will discuss your Employability Plan with you each year, this will help you to consider how to make the most of your time at university and where you might take your career, they will also advise you on academic choices. They will be expected to know how you are doing, what your interests are and of any problems that might affect your academic work and will be able to speak about you in an informed way at meetings that discuss academic progress. In order for this to work well, it is important that you tell your supervisor about anything affecting your academic work.

They will understand the university structure, and will be able to offer advice about whom to see to get help on matters that concern your non academic life, like finances or housing, as well as matters concerning your academic progress.

Ideally you should have the same supervisor throughout your time here, but if your supervisor is away for an extended period you will be allocated a different supervisor. Occasionally the close relationship that we hope will develop fails to do so. If you find that you cannot communicate well with your supervisor, for whatever reason, then contact the Chair of the Board of Studies or the Head of Department or, if you prefer, get in touch with one of the other support services. Undergraduate students can change supervisor without giving a reason. For postgraduate students more academic issues arise because of specialist subject expertise, but some flexibility is usually possible.

* For HYMS students the equivalent role to supervisor is that of personal adviser, which is described in more detail in the departmental handbook.

Supervision poster (PDF , 129kb)

Who to contact

For academic progress issues you should talk to your supervisor.

Alternatively, please contact:

  • Student Hub
    Student Hub, Market Square
  • Tel: 01904 324140
    student-hub@york.ac.uk
  • Office hours: 9am - 5pm (Monday to Friday) in Undergraduate term-time, at all other times 10am-4pm