“I’m not the only victim…” student perceptions of exploitative supervision relation in doctoral degree

Wing Tung Michelle CHENG, Man-Lai LEUNG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

Abstract

Drawing on a five-ethical principles framework, this study examines how the thirteen recruited doctoral students across disciplines in Hong Kong interpret the idea of and experience “exploitative supervision”. Findings reveal that doctoral students’ lived experiences of exploitation are expressed in five different themes: autonomy exploitation, justice exploitation, fidelity exploitation, beneficent exploitation, and non-maleficence exploitation. The phenomenon was scaffolded through a Foucauldian perspective on power relations. Varied understandings of academic exploitation among doctoral students point to an urgent need to take reference from the employment and labor law to outline the fundamental rights of doctoral students, set up a probation period for the matching of supervisor-supervisee, and establish a higher-level independent inquiry to handle academic exploitation. Copyright © 2021 The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature B.V.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)523–540
JournalHigher Education
Volume84
Issue number3
Early online dateNov 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2022

Citation

Cheng, M. W. T., & Leung, M.-L. (2022). “I’m not the only victim…” student perceptions of exploitative supervision relation in doctoral degree. Higher Education, 84(3), 523–540. doi: 10.1007/s10734-021-00786-5

Keywords

  • Exploitation
  • Power
  • Academic supervision
  • Doctoral student
  • Higher education

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