PhD mentor

PhD mentor a quick guide

A mentor should be an associate or full professor from the Radboudumc, who does not work in the same department as the PhD candidate and who is not involved in the PhD project.

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PhD mentor a quick guide

The mentor will support and guide you as well as stimulate you to critically look at and reflect upon your learning objectives and outcomes. In the context of your personal and scientific development, your mentor should discuss career progress with regard to your specific goals (research and education), ambitions and interests. Your mentor can advise you regarding your choices for elective subjects and where necessary offer feedback on research project results, conclusions and ideas. Your mentor will also act as mediator should conflicts arise during any phase of your PhD. Confidentiality will be maintained at all times.

Also see institute specific information in the time line.

for candidates of RIHS and RIMLS

Tasks of the mentor

  1. Read the Training and Supervision Plan (TSP) at the start of the project, and comment on it if necessary at the first meeting between the candidate and the mentor.
  2. Have a meeting with the PhD candidate once a year to discuss the progress of the project, both in terms of scientific output, as well as training (competences and skills).
  3. Read the updated TSP and comment on it if necessary during the yearly meeting with the candidate.
  4. Be available throughout the year for independent advice in case a problem arises between the candidate and the supervisor(s). Note: The RIMLS and RIHS institutes have appointed two experienced scientists, as contact persons in the case of suspicion of scientific misconduct or related matters.
Confidentiality will be maintained at all times.

Guidelines for PhD mentor meetings

Every year, the PhD candidate needs to arrange a progress meeting with his/her mentor. Progress and scientific output are discussed. The attendance of the PhD training program components will also be assessed.

Although the content of the meetings will depend on the candidate's needs, several subjects need to be discussed in the meetings. This will help the PhD candidate to make the right choices in his/her individual program. These choices are described in the (updated) Training and Supervision Plan which is signed as ‘seen’ by the mentor.

Important questions during mentor meeting

  1. Is your PhD progressing as you had expected?
  2. How would you assess the interaction and communication between yourself and your (co)supervisor(s)?

In light of these two questions, the following example points may be raised

  • Reflection on expectations from the PhD project and from the supervisor(s)
  • Reflection on end-of-year assessment [jaargesprek] with supervisor
  • Reflection on personal ambition & interests
    • Combination work and personal life
    • Future career plans
  • Reflection on achievements in last year
  • Reflection on personal strengths and weaknesses (knowledge gaps, specific interests)
    • Elective courses and workshops followed to date. Outcome & relevance e.g. in the light of improving weaknesses, technical expertise, future plans etc
  • Reflection on Timeline for writing thesis: thesis chapter ideas > chapter titles > start writing.
  • Foreseen difficulties
  • Update Training and Supervision Plan

for candidates of DCMN