Excellent Supervisor Awards (unfunded)
These awards recognise individuals who make a major contribution to the wellbeing and academic progress of students whom they are supervising on research projects [whether at postgraduate research (PGR), undergraduate (UG) or postgraduate taught (PGT) level]. All supervisors are expected to provide hands-on training, to inspire their students in pursuing their research goals, to mentor their students as they plan for their next steps/future careers, and to provide pastoral care for their students in the context of their research team. An excellent supervisor may, for their part, provide an exceptional level of training support or play a particularly inspirational role to students they are working with, may provide notable support where learning difficulties or other personal circumstances are proving challenging for students, or may have shown exceptional pastoral concern for their students’ welfare.
In considering nominations for Excellent Supervisor Awards, the Selection Panel will look in particular for evidence of some or all of the following:
Essential qualities which all Excellent Supervisors will demonstrate:
- a willingness to prioritise the support of students, where needed, above other demands on their time and energy
- regular contact with students and quick responses to questions and problems raised
- notable expertise and knowledge and a commitment and capacity to transfer them to students
- honest and supportive engagement with students’ data and ideas
- For nominees at an early career stage (e.g. in first 5 years as a research group leader), it is normally expected that a nominee will have supervised students across a minimum of 2 different cohorts. These students may be at PGR, UG or PGT level. For supervision of PGR students, it is expected that the supervisees referenced in a nomination will have successfully completed their transfer of status, but they may not yet have received leave to supplicate
- For nominees at a senior career stage (e.g. more than 5 years as a research group leader), it is normally expected that a nominee will have supervised students across a minimum of 5 different cohorts. These students may be at PGR, UG or PGT level. For supervision of PGR students, it is expected that at least 3 of the supervisees referenced in a nomination will have received leave to supplicate
Further qualities which Excellent Supervisors are likely to demonstrate:
- mentoring and willingness to advise on careers following study, including recognition of a range of possible successful next steps
- a supportive and encouraging attitude to students’ personal and professional development, including the development of transferable skills and participation in sport, clubs and societies, charitable work and teaching
- prioritisation of students’ personal needs and welfare above all other concerns
Please also read the section on ‘Evidence taken into account in considering nominations for Personal awards’ on the Further Details page.
Read an interview with a 2019 Excellent Supervisor awardee
ELIGIBILITY AND PROCESS
- Collegiate University and NHS staff involved in supervision of Oxford students within the Division are eligible for this category of award.
- Previous recipients of Excellent Supervisor awards can be considered for a Major Educator Award.
- Previous recipients of Excellent Supervisor awards can be re-nominated for the Excellent Supervisor Award in subsequent rounds, provided that the nomination is for a new contribution to the wellbeing and academic progress of students whom they are supervising on research projects made by the individual since the previous award.
- Staff and students considering making a nomination to the Excellent Supervisor category are advised to contact Anne-Marie Honeyman-Tafa in the divisional office. Anne-Marie will put potential nominators in touch with a member of the Selection Panel or a previous awardee for informal advice.
HOW TO NOMINATE
The 2023 Excellent Supervisor Awards are now closed for nominations. Find out more about the 2021 winners on the 2021 Awardees page.
- Uniquely for Excellent Supervisor awards, nominations may originate with a member of staff or a student. (For other categories of Personal Awards, only staff may make nominations.)
- All nominations must include statements/endorsements from the following:
- The relevant Director of Graduate Studies
- At least two students whom the nominee has supervised
- In the case of a day-to-day supervisor who is not the formal supervisor (usually an early career researcher), an endorsement from the PI/Group Leader
- It is the responsibility of the relevant Director of Graduate Studies to ensure that the required evidence, as set out in the Excellent Supervisor nomination form, is provided. Nominations not accompanied by the required evidence are unlikely to receive an award.
- Where departments make their own awards for excellent supervision, departments are encouraged to automatically put these award winners forward to the MSD Award scheme.
- the nominee(s) must consent to being put forward for an award
- self-nominations will not be accepted for Excellent Supervisor Awards