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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


The Supervision of Research for Dissertations and Theses

Nic Lessing, Ansie Lessing.

South African higher institutions are engaged in rapid transformation processes. Some of the consequences are that an increasing proportion of the postgraduate student body is from previously disadvantaged backgrounds and the body of academic staff has also been transformed. In general, students have limited experience of independent research work and
using library and other research facilities. Quality research needs to be maintained. It is of great importance that academics should have the knowledge and skills to supervise research. However, preliminary research indicates that very little is done to equip academic staff in the skills of supervision research.

In a bid to ensure the quality of postgraduate supervision, the requirements for M & D research studies from a number of universities countrywide (South Africa) were collected. A synthesis of these guidelines was compared with and adapted to the critical cross field outcomes and associated assessment criteria for registration with South African Qualification Authorities (SAQA).

Using this document as background, a workshop is proposed to discuss several issues in the supervision of postgraduate research, as experienced by different universities.


Nic Lessing  (South Africa)
Dept of Business Management
RAU University

Professor Nic Lessing (D Com) is experienced in the business world, having served various industries in different capacities. He subsequently joined the Rand Afrikaans University, where he is now Professor in Business Management. His areas of teaching and research interests include business teaching using the case method and computerised simulation models. He is member of the Executive Committee of the Southern Africa Case Research Association.

Ansie Lessing  (South Africa)
Department of Educational Studies
University of South Africa

  • Thesis Supervision

(60 min Workshop, English)