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Mentorship, supervision and learning experience in PhD education

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The learning that ensued from the mentorship relationship on a mentorship program for doctoral students at a Swedish university was studied in three cases (two in social science and one in technology). The aim was: (a) to explore how doctoral students, their formal mentors and their supervisors describe their own learning, and how they perceive learning of the other individuals who are part of the developmental relationship; (b) to explore the doctoral students' learning outcomes. A total of nine semi-structured interviews were conducted. The results show variations in reciprocal learning among the participants, both within and across the cases. The students' perceived formal and/or personal aims at the outset of the mentorship program were partly achieved. However, doctoral students' task/role learning was generally emphasized, rather than personal learning. Finally, the students perceived a lack of role model learning.
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Keywords: PhD students; PhD supervision; learning outcomes; mentorship; professional development

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Psychology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden 2: Department of Immunotechnology, Lund University, Lund, Sweden

Publication date: June 1, 2013

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