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Working with supervisors

A student and supervisor taking readings outdoors for research

Your supervisor is a faculty member who will mentor you while you study at UVic. They will guide your research and the resulting thesis, project or dissertation. This relationship is one of the most important resources at your disposal. It’s important to get this right.

Finding a supervisor

Most UVic programs ask you to provide the name of your proposed supervisor on your application. You’ll find a list of potential supervisors on our graduate program pages. Look for faculty with similar research interests to your own.

The supervisor-student relationship

A great supervisor gives you encouragement and critical feedback on your academic work. They are passionate and knowledgeable about your subject area. They care about your success, and want to help you achieve your goals.

This mentor helps you identify research and teaching roles. They help select your supervisory committee and develop post-degree goals and opportunities.

Researching potential supervisors

Finding the right supervisor can take a little work. It’s important that you learn as much as you can about your supervisor. Get to know them and their academic style.

There are a few things you can do to develop a relationship with your new supervisor:

  • make contact well in advance of when you’re planning to start graduate school
  • prepare a statement that defines your research interests and preferred areas of focus
  • learn about their research, publications, funding sources and CVs
  • define your preferred working style and check for potential compatibility
  • sit in on their classes or visit their research settings (ask permission first)
  • understand that the relationship requires mutual commitment and effort

Need help?

If you have a general question about the application process or studying at UVic, get in touch with your UVic graduate student recruiter.

If you have a specific question about your program or application to UVic, contact your program’s graduate secretary.