Academic Supervision for Postgraduate Students at Umm Al-Qura University
The Academic Supervisor:
An academic supervisor is a faculty member who has been selected as a supervisor on students by a decision of the Deanship Postgraduate Studies Council, based on the approval of the Department and College councils.
Supervision and Follow-up:
It is a planned and organized process aiming at assisting research students possess research skills so as to achieve educational and pedagogical objectives. Also, it allows those students to effectively and appropriately complete their projects and research.
How to select an academic supervisor:
Characteristics of a good academic supervisor:
- To have a skill of discussing all the thesis-related details with the student.
- To be dedicated to the supervision process until it is completely performed.
- To be a good guide for the student in all administrative and scientific matters.
- To be acquainted with scientific research and its various approaches of.
- To be familiar with the subject of the study (not necessarily full knowledge).
The supervisor’s main task is to mentor the student, but s\he is not required to help the student in writing the research or collecting information to relieve the student’s effort in researching. Collecting information and data is an easy process; however, the difficulty lies in how to formulate and use that information correctly.
The supervisor should be a skilled and cooperative guide. Even if the supervisor does not have the information, guidance does not require deep knowledge on the topic;, it is rather a skill of discussing the student and encouraging them to search the topic deeply, doing their best and knowing what is required.
Academic Supervision Regulations and Rules
Article 42: Every postgraduate student shall, upon the completion of at least 50% of the courses at a grade not less than (very good), submit the thesis project. In the case of recommending approval, the Department Council proposes the name of the thesis supervisor, and this shall be submitted to the College Council and the Deanship of Postgraduate Studies for approval.
Article 43: Topics of master’s theses should be characterized by novelty and originality. Doctoral dissertations should be characterized by originality, innovation and active contribution to the development of knowledge in the student's discipline.
- Academic theses shall be supervised by professors and associate professors of the faculty members in the university. Assistant professors may supervise master’s theses if two years have already passed since their assignment and has had at least two papers in their research field published or accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal.
- Assistant professors shall be granted permission to supervise and attend defense of scientific theses for a period of two years. The renewal of this permission requires the publication of two other studies or promotion to associate professor.
Scientific theses may be supervised by supervisors with distinguished experience and scientific competence in the field of research, who are not members of the university faculty members, upon a decision of the University Council based on a recommendation of the relevant department council, the concerned college council and the Deanship of Postgraduate Studies.
A faculty member from other departments may assist in supervising theses depending on the nature of the theses, provided that the main supervisor is from the department in which the student studies.
The supervisor may, solely or jointly with others, supervise a maximum of four theses at a time. In the cases of extreme necessity, upon a recommendation from the department council and approved of both the concerned college councils and the Deanship of Postgraduate Studies, the number of theses may be increased to five, and supervision of each thesis shall be calculated by one hour of quorum of the faculty member if he/she is a sole or main supervisor.
In the event that the supervisor is unable to continue supervising the thesis or terminate his service at the university, the department shall propose an alternative supervisor to take his/her place, and shall be approved by the relevant college council and the Deanship of Postgraduate Studies Council.
At the end of each semester, the supervisor shall submit a detailed report to the head of the department on the progress of the student in his/her studies, and a copy of the report shall be sent to the Dean of Postgraduate Studies.
After the student completes his/her thesis, the supervisor of the thesis shall submit a report on its completion to the head of the department in preparation for the completion of the procedures determined by the Council of the Deanship of Postgraduate Studies.
If the student is not proved to be serious in the study or violates any of his/her academic duties based on a report from the supervisor of their studies, the student shall be warned with a letter from the concerned department. If the student is warned twice but does not avoid the reasons for warning, the Deanship of Graduate Studies Council, based on the recommendation of the department council, shall cancel their registration.
Duties and Responsibilities of Academic Supervisor
- Making sure that the student is completely conversant with the relevant postgraduate studies regulations.
- Ensuring that the subject of master’s thesis is characterized by novelty, originality and active contribution to the development of knowledge in the student's specialty.
- Beginning the supervision of the thesis after all formalities for registering the subject are finished.
- Guiding students using all scientific and practical methods related to scientific research.
- The supervisor should submit a detailed e-report on the progress of the student in his/her study on the date specified in the calendar of the Deanship.
- The supervisor shall submit a report to the head of the department to warn the student by a letter from the concerned department in the following cases:
- If the percentage of absence (with or without excuse) exceeds 25%.
- If the student does not respond to the supervisor's scientific instructions.
- If the student is unable to write scientific formulation to suit the stage in which s\he is studying.
Note: (If the student is warned twice and the reasons for the warning are not avoided, the student's enrolment shall be canceled by a decision of the competent councils).
- Reviewing the thesis when it is received, and informing the student with the most important changes.
- Following up all administrative matters related to the appointment of the defense committee, the date of defense and the completion of the defense file after the announcement of the result, if accepted.
- The supervisor submits a report on the completion of the thesis after the student finishes its preparation.
Note: (The final report shows that the thesis is completed and is in its final form).
The duration of the thesis printing shall be limited to a maximum of four months and shall be counted within the maximum period for obtaining the degree.
Duties and Responsibilities of Defense Committee
- Each member shall submit a detailed report on the thesis according to the form prepared for that, and within the specified period.
- In the event that the supervisor of the thesis is unable to participate in the defense committee, the department shall propose a substitute for them, and shall take the approval of the competent councils.
- The alternative supervisor shall be a member of the defense committee in terms of financial rights and he shall be the committee's rapporteur.
- The defense committee shall prepare a report signed by all its members within one week from the date of defense.
- Ensuring that one of the members of the defense committee is delegated to award the degree.
- Each member of the defense committee shall submit a detailed report within a period not exceeding two weeks from the date of defense when the guidance option is selected (refusal of the thesis).
- The student's grade of the thesis shall be based on the average of what is assessed by the members of the defense committee.
- The final score of the thesis shall be counted out of 80 if it is accepted after being re-submitted for defense.
- The report of the defense committee shall be submitted to the Dean of Postgraduate Studies not later than three weeks from the date of defense.
Duties and Responsibilities of M\F Students
- The student is responsible for his/her academic performance and what he/she presents in his/ her scientific thesis. The role of the supervisor is to guide and assist the student in writing the research and find solutions to the problems that may be encountered.
- It is necessary to review the Unified Regulation of Postgraduate Studies and to understand the rules and regulations relating to postgraduate studies.
- Respecting the academic supervisor and complying with all instructions and directions issued by him/her.
- Commitment to meet with the academic supervisor and keep him/her updated on the developments of writing the thesis regularly
- Implementing the supervisor's recommendations regarding the agreed remarks on the draft thesis before submitting them to the members of the defense committee.
- Knowing all administrative matters related to the defense procedures, from reserving the hall and specifying the date after coordination with the supervisor and the members of the committee to choose the appropriate date.
- Following-up with the competent department to submit the final report and the process of granting the degree after the delivery of the thesis.
- Complying with the clearance form procedures in order to receive the graduation certificate.