e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

Home / Regular Issue / JTAS Vol. 22 (2) Jun. 2014 / JSSH-0854-2013


PhD. Supervision as an Emotional Process - Critical Situations and Emotional Boundary Work

Thomas Johansson, Gina Wisker, Silwa Claesson, Ola Strandler and Elisabeth Saalman

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 22, Issue 2, June 2014

Keywords: Critical situations, emotional boundary work, Supervision

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This empirical study focuses on emotional processes in the supervision of doctoral students. It takes place in the context of an increasing focus on institutional regulation, time to completion, funding and skills development. It investigates emotional boundary work involved in the doctoral student's experiences, identity formation, and the relationship of this to the supervision process. Through in-depth interviews we aim to capture emotional elements in this identity development process. The research questions asked are: How do doctoral students deal with the fragile borderline between private life and work?; Are conflicts necessarily bad for the process?; and How do doctoral students deal with the emotional aspects of having to change supervisors? The interviews are ongoing, and to date the material consists of 10 interviews with the doctoral students, and these form the basis for this research article. The interviews are performed at different faculties and in different disciplines in a single Swedish university. The results indicate that an important part of the supervision process is connected to the emotional management of the relationship with the supervisor. Students learn how to handle changes in their supervisor's temperaments and moods, and how to develop skills in emotional management.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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