Supervision Guidelines for Faculty – Section 9: Appendix 1 – Resources for Supervisors

People and Facilities

Academic and Student Services and Support

Academic Success: Academic Success provides students (with or without documented disabilities) with learning strategies, workshops, programs, and peer support to help them navigate their University experience.

Accessibility Services: Accessibility Services can arrange accommodations for students with documented disabilities (ongoing or temporary). Faculty can also contact them for information and/or guidance.

Centre for International Experience: CIE provides information, events, and resources for international students studying at the University of Toronto, as well as workshops and resources for domestic students planning to travel abroad.

Graduate Centre for Academic Communication (GCAC): Formerly English Language and Writing Support (ELWS). Supervisors can direct students who are looking to enhance their writing and speaking skills to GCAC for non-credit courses, workshops, and other resources. Individual consultations are also available by appointment.

SGS Student Services:

SGS Vice-Dean, Students:

Health, Wellness, and Safety

Family Care Office: If your student is seeking guidance, support, or advice with family care needs, this office provides support and hosts a number of events and discussion groups open to all members of the University community. Faculty can also contact them for information and/or guidance.

Health and Wellness Centre: Supervisors can recommend this service to those students who require physical health services (similar to those of a General Practioner), mental health care, travel medicine, immunizations, nutritional care, family planning, or first aid. Health & Wellness also provides workshops and resources for student well-being.

SGS Counselling: Students can access counselling support through an embedded counsellor at 63 St. George Street. Individual sessions are tailored to the concerns of graduate students.

Equity and Diversity

Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity Office: Access this office for programs, workshops, and resources on equity, anti-racism, and racism and its intersections. Services available to students, faculty, and staff.

Community Safety Office (CSO): If you or your student feels unsafe or is experiencing unwanted attention, please connect with the CSO.

Crisis and Academic Progress: This office can be contacted by faculty and staff to discuss student-related issues.

Equity Offices: A number of equity offices are available to provide guidance, raise awareness, and develop programming to support diversity, equity, and human rights for all members of the University of Toronto community.

First Nations House (FNH): Graduate students can meet with an Aboriginal Learning Strategist, seek academic support and advocacy, and access the Resource Centre and a computer lab at the FHN.

University of Toronto Graduate Students’ Union (UTGSU): The UTGSU provides academic advocacy services and can assist students through the provision of advice, information, and representation.

Office of the Ombudsperson: If you are concerned that you are not being treated fairly (e.g., a decision or process within the University is unfair), you can reach out to the Ombudsperson for advice. The Ombuds office is confidential, impartial, and independent.

Sexual & Gender Diversity Office: Provides programs, education, and resources on sexual and gender diversity to all members of the University community.

Sexual Violence Prevention & Support Centre: This tri-campus Centre “supports members of the University community who have been affected by sexual violence. The Centre has a mandate to conduct intake, accept disclosures and reports of sexual violence, and to provide support to individual members of the University community who have experienced sexual violence.”

Policies and Guidelines

School of Graduate Studies Calendar
University Assessment and Grading Practices Policy
Statement on Conflict of Interest and Conflict of Commitment
Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters
Code of Student Conduct
Policy on Ethical Conduct in Research
AODA (Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act)
Policy on Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment
SGS Intellectual Property Guidelines
Human Resources Guideline on Civil Conduct
Guidelines for Monitoring Doctoral Progress
SGS Graduate Supervision Guidelines – Student Edition

Other Resources

The Canadian Association for Graduate Studies produced in 2008 their Guiding Principles for Graduate Supervision in Canada

Western University’s Western Guide to Mentoring Graduate Students Across Cultures

The Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research, adopted in 2011 by the three federal granting agencies (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC)

Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation released a report in June 2016 entitled, “Recommendations and Resources for Supporting International Students and Teaching Assistants at the University of Toronto


Section 1: Introduction
Key topics: How can these guidelines help you?

Section 2: Supervision and Mentoring
Key topics: Defining key terms; General characteristics of good supervisory practice; Effective supervision and mentorship strategies

Section 3: Supervisory Styles
Key topics: How do supervisory styles differ across grad units and disciplines? What characteristics do students of all disciplines value in a supervisor?

Section 4: Effective Supervision in Practice: From the Initial Stage to Finishing Up
Key topics: Agreeing to Supervise a Student; Setting up a Committee; Program Timelines, Good Progress, and Academic Standing; Funding; and Submitting the thesis for the Final Oral Examination

Section 5: Supporting Students to Completion and Beyond
Key topics: Guiding principles that may help your student through the final stages of their PhD; Graduate Professional Development and career preparation

Section 6: Creating Equality and Equity When Working with Students
Key topics: Defining “equality” and “equity”; How experiences of grad school differ among students; Considering students’ backgrounds (e.g., students with family responsibilities, First Nations students, international students, students with mental health issues, students with writing support needs, etc.)

Section 7: When a Student May Need Accommodations
Key topics: Accommodations vs. time-limited academic adjustments; Defining “accommodations”; Disclosure and Confidentiality; Available resources

Section 8: When Problems Arise
Key topics: Identifying potential sources of problems in the student/supervisor relationship; Who can you talk to?; Vignettes

Section 10: Appendix 2 – Checklist for Supervisors