An Effective Supervisory Model to Help MA English Students in the Process of Writing Their Thesis

Hamid Rahmani Sangani, Seyed Iman Bassir, Latifah Jalali


Conducting a research project and writing up a thesis could be as nearly demanding as it is essential for MA students to achieve their academic goals, particularly in developing world contexts such as Iran. One main reason for this, as experienced by some of the students, is the insufficient and inefficient guidance which the students receive from their supervisors. Meanwhile, the initial review of the available documents and syllabi in our context, Iran, demonstrated that there are no transparent comprehensive guidelines recommended for the supervisor-student relationships. In order to respond to these challenges, a multiple-case study, including four cases, was designed. Each of the four cases consisted of one MA TEFL student who was guided by a supervisory team including two of the three supervisors. The team members held their consulting sessions for each student individually. Each of the students’ activities and interactions were considered and reflected on regularly by the supervisory team in order to explore the challenges the students and their supervisors encountered and then to propose responses to them. The students were regularly interviewed about the efficiency of the whole process of the supervision, particularly the suggested responses and changes, to detect its successes and failures. An ongoing thematic analysis was used to analyse the collected data. The process helped the researchers, who were also the participants, to develop a supervisory model which hopefully facilitates the process of writing an MA thesis. The findings could be immensely helpful for the syllabus designers and supervisory teams as well as MA and PhD students.



Supervisor-Student Relationship, Supervisory Model, EL Students, MA Research, Thesis Writing

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