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Supervision & advising

graduate student with supervisor

Your supervisor is a faculty member who will mentor you while you study at UVic. They'll guide your research and the resulting thesis, project or dissertation. This relationship is one of the most important resources at your disposal.

Find a supervisor

We feature our UVic faculty on our graduate program pages. Explore faculty profiles to find available supervisors who match your research area of interest.

The supervisor-student relationship

A great supervisor oversees your academic work, is passionate about your subject area and is invested in your success.

This mentor may work with you to identify research and teaching roles, members of a supervisory committee and career opportunities that will carry you beyond your degree. Ideally, this relationship is the foundation that moves you closer to your goals.

However, this is not always an easy relationship to negotiate. Like any partnership, your relationship with your supervisor can see bumps in the road.

Keep in mind that if you encounter challenges, a range of supports are available to help you work out a mutually agreeable path and, if necessary, to make a change.

You should take the time to research your options and clarify expectations with a potential supervisor before you agree to work together.

The graduate supervision policy will help prepare you for a successful relationship with your supervisor.

Academic supervision

There is some variation when it comes to academic supervision at UVic. At UVic, you may be assigned a supervisor or be expected to find your own.

In some cases, you must identify an available supervisor before you begin your studies. You should confirm the specific details with your academic unit.

Research potential supervisors

Learning as much as you can about the faculty members who you will be working with increases your chances for success. A potential supervisor may be more open to you if you:

  • make contact well in advance of your desired academic entry point
  • develop a statement of your research interests and preferred areas of focus
  • spend time exploring their research, publications, funding sources and CVs
  • assess your preferred working styles and the potential for compatibility
  • sit in on their classes or visit their research settings
  • consider the mutual investment required

Advising & program contacts

Advising and program contacts know the details of your program and degree. They’re often familiar with the teaching and research schedules of faculty members. They may be able help you to create an initial list of available and compatible graduate supervisors.