Supervisory feedback across disciplines: Does it meet student expectations?

Madhu Neupane Bastola

Research output: Unpublished conference presentation (presented paper, abstract, poster)Conference presentation (not published in journal/proceeding/book)Academic researchpeer-review


Guided research is a significant component (i.e., the climax) of a master’s degree (Paran, Hyland, & Bentall, 2017). Extant research reports that writing a master’s thesis is often a demanding task for students due to its daunting size, lack of previous research experience, and limited understanding of the thesis genre and disciplinary requirements (Bitchener, Basturkmen, & East, 2010). In this regard, thesis supervisors play a crucial role in socializing students into academic writing, helping them grow academically, and gaining membership in the disciplinary community (Li, Hyland, & Hu, 2017). It is worth noting that to what extent supervisory feedback can achieve these objectives largely depends on the aspects that it focuses on (Bitchener et al., 2010). This research examined feedback comments on 98 thesis drafts and 86 presentations in Education, Humanities, Science, and Engineering disciplines. Supervisors’ beliefs underlying their practices and students’ expectations were explored through interviews with 16 supervisor-student piars. The data were analyzed recursively and reiteratively using NVivo. For further frequency analysis, the data were transferred to SPSS. The study found variations across disciplines regarding feedback focus and, in many cases, students’ expectations remained unfulfilled.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019
Event12th International Symposium at Teaching English at Tertiary Level - Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
Duration: 6 Sep 20197 Sep 2019


Forum/Symposium12th International Symposium at Teaching English at Tertiary Level

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