Information on the roles and responsibilities of external supervisors including how external experts in a relevant field of research can be added to a graduate research advisory committee
The audience for this page is external supervisors of graduate researchers.
All graduate researchers are supported from commencement of their candidature to submission of their thesis by an advisory committee. The committees must consist of:
- one principal supervisor, who is based in the same department as the graduate researcher
- at least one co-supervisor
- an advisory committee chair (must be a registered supervisor in the department of the student other than supervisors on the committee)
- and optional additional committee members or external supervisors if required
Each member of the committee should be a suitable academic with expertise in the field of research.
What is an external supervisor?
In addition to having expertise in the field of research, external supervisors:
- are appropriately qualified persons with sufficient professional experience (Supervisor Eligibility and Registration Policy MPF1322)
- are not members of the University or honorary fellow (although they have an employee number so they can be added to student records in StudentOne, they are in the Non-University group)
- must be approved by the head of department in which the graduate researcher is enrolled
As an external supervisor you are required to:
Role of external supervisors
As you are an externally based advisory committee member, you do not have access to the University’s systems. The principal supervisor is the primary contact for you. It is their responsibility to inform you of any progress meetings that occur throughout the graduate researcher’s candidature. Arrangements on how, and how often, updates are relayed to you and how your contribution to the graduate researcher’s progress is managed should be discussed with the principal supervisor and graduate researcher.
To better understand the expectations and responsibilities of graduate researchers it is recommended that you review the Roles and responsibilities pages that outline the conduct guidelines for University of Melbourne graduate researchers.
How am I appointed as an external supervisor?
To be appointed as an external supervisor you will be asked to follow the below certification process:
- the student (or principal supervisor) will send you a Certification of external supervisor form
- you need to return the completed form with an attached CV
- the relevant head of department will review your application
- when approved, your details will be added to the University's External Supervisor Database
- you will be issued with a staff ID number and your details will be added to the record of the graduate researcher that you supervise as an external member of the advisory committee
The current email address you provided on your form is used for all communication from the University. It is therefore important to inform the relevant administrative staff of any updates to your contact details.
If you are a former University of Melbourne staff member, you are eligible to be certified as an external supervisor by following the process above. Your external supervisor record will have the same University of Melbourne staff ID you had in the past.