For people interested or involved in postgraduate study at Otago
The University of Otago is very proud of its tradition of high quality postgraduate education. In many respects, such a tradition goes hand in hand with research quality.
It is often not realized by the general public that postgraduate students perform a significant proportion of the original research carried out in universities. This reflects the partnership between postgraduate students and their supervisors. When academic staff start their careers, most of them have been postgraduate students themselves no more than a few years earlier, which means that they are very familiar with the experiences of postgraduate students, good and bad.
In the early years of their careers, academics perform a great deal of their research personally, and it sometimes takes a while for the size of their research group to build up. As this happens, they have less time for personally doing research – ironically because of the time demands of supervision. But this is quite natural, and indeed efficient, because it results in a robust process for both creating original research findings and training new students in the art of research, very little of which can be learned from a book.
I have been a supervisor of postgraduate students at this University for over 30 years. With the benefit of hindsight, I see many similarities between being a supervisor and being a parent or grandparent. I take great delight in the success of my students, even long after they have graduated and moved on in their careers. It is always a pleasure to celebrate their successes and to feel proud of playing a part in their growth as individuals. It is not a matter of teaching them what to do, or what to think, but of providing them with the environment that will unleash their talents.
For this reason, the relationship that you will have with your future research supervisor is an extremely important one. If you find yourself wondering about whether a particular academic might be the right supervisor for you, simply ask some of their current postgraduate students. In my career, which has involved about 70 postgraduate students, current students have always been my best advertisement.
Should you decide to take up postgraduate study for the first time, or return for more, I wish you the very best with your studies. I am confident that you will find it an enriching and even life-changing experience.
Professor Keith Hunter
Division of Sciences
Physical Education provides foundation for postgraduate success
When Dr Anne-Marie Jackson (Ngāti Whātua, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Wai and Ngāti Kahu o Whangaroa) embarked on her first university degree, she never gave a thought to the possibility of postgraduate study. Ten years later, she has secured a…
From unskilled migrant to Masters student
Nothing to lose; no future; no hope; survival of the fittest: Jacob Kambuta lists off the reasons he left Zambia, answered an agency ad in a South African magazine, and travelled to New Zealand on a one-way ticket to begin four years as a full-time migrant dairy farm worker…
Siblings share Information Science success
Thanks to the world-leading work of Otago's Distributed Computing & Software Agents Research Centre, the parents of siblings Tony and Sharmila Savarimuthu boarded a plane in Tamil Nadu, Southern India and travelled to Dunedin last December to see their children graduate with…
Masters degree offers international focus
Listen to Professor Robert Patman describe why he feels the multidisciplinary University of Otago's Master of International Studies (MIntSt) is something to be excited about and you understand why this nationally unique course draws so many top-class domestic and international students…
Distance learning option for medical specialisation
When Dr Fraser Hodgson's Te Awamutu practice decided one of the partners needed to offer specialisation in travel medicine, he volunteered for the job…
New Masters programme in Tourism
A new Masters degree in Tourism combines the latest taught courses with a component of independent research and aims to provide students with the knowledge and skills they'll need to succeed with a career in a tourism-related industry or to prepare for a PhD in the discipline…
Library liaison supports postgraduate students
Need help finding a research resource, tackling a literature review or tracking citations? The University Library offers a Liaison Service which supports postgraduate students right across the University so they can make the most of the world-class facilities and resources it offers…
Postgraduate radio show makes waves
A new radio show for postgraduate students is proving a popular addition to the programming at Radio One, the University of Otago's student radio network…
Are you a member of the Otago distance learning community?
If yes, then have you visited our Facebook page yet? Check us out at www.facebook.com/OtagoDistance
Do you have a postgraduate story you'd like to share?
The Otago Post is about sharing stories of Otago postgraduate success. Whether you're still studying or have recently graduated, we'd welcome your story. Write to us at email@example.com
The Otago Post is distributed via email three times a year.
Subscribe to the Otago Post.