Conflict within Committee

Conflict between Supervisor and Student

Even with the best intentions and efforts, situations may arise in which the working relationship between a supervisor and a student breaks down. In such situations, either the student or the supervisor can initiate a meeting with the IRES Graduate Program Manager and/or the RES Graduate Advisor, both of whom will attempt to help resolve the situation. The Graduate Advisor and Graduate Program Manager will keep the Director informed of significant supervisor-student problems that occur. If needed, the Director of IRES will step in to help with the situation.

Should serious problems between the supervisor and student be irreconcilable, it may be necessary for the student to change supervisors. The RES Change of Supervisor Form can be found here. If the student has not already found a new supervisor, the original supervisor should provide assistance in this process. The new supervisor will take responsibility for guiding the graduate student’s academic program. Issues of financial support should be resolved among the parties in reasonable ways to best support the student.

If a student is unable to build and maintain a successful working relationship with any of the available supervisors, then that student may be asked to leave the program.

If no resolution can be achieved, the problem may ultimately be taken to the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (G+PS). The Dean of G+PS will check to ensure that each previous level of problem resolution has been explored to the fullest extent before proceeding further.

G+PS Guidelines on Ending the Supervisory Relationship


Conflict within Committee

When there is a conflict in advice or when there are different expectations on the part of co-supervisors or members of the supervisory committee, the primary supervisor is expected to help resolve the differences. If there continues to be difficulty within the committee, the student should bring the issues to the Graduate Program Manager and/or the Graduate Advisor.