This website (and accompanying document) provides guidelines and tools intended to be useful to all within the MSU community who have advising and mentoring roles related to graduate education. While attention to compliance issues (e.g., Responsible Conduct of Research, Title IX) is essential to creating a community of integrity and excellence, the purpose of this document is to highlight the essential role of advising and mentoring. Advising involves providing basic information about requirements, policies and procedures that apply to everyone. All students have the right to expect thoughtful, timely, and accurate advising. Mentoring involves a deeper relationship and has a more extensive impact. Effective mentoring relationships are formed through principles of reciprocity and mutual responsibility. Mentors and mentees respect one another both as researchers/scholars/creative practitioners and as individuals. That respect is formed through a shared commitment to scientific, creative and professional excellence.
MSU Guidelines for Graduate Student Mentoring and Advising (PDF)
The following guidelines are intended to foster faculty-graduate student relationships that are characterized by honesty, courtesy, and professionalism and that provide students with intellectual support and guidance. The academic unit is especially important, since it forms the community of scholars responsible for cultivating a stimulating intellectual environment and, through the joint efforts of all faculty members of the unit, for mentoring of graduate students.
for graduate student & faculty mentoring relationships
Effective mentoring relationships are formed and sustained through principles of reciprocity and mutual responsibility. Mentors and mentees should respect one another both as researchers/scholars/creative practitioners and as individuals. That respect is formed through a shared commitment to scientific, creative and professional excellence, and a recognition of these common values:
MSU is committed to excellence in graduate education. Graduate education, research, and creative activities take place within a community of scholars where constructive relationships between graduate students and their advisors and mentors create an environment characterized by the highest standards of scholarship, ethics, and professional integrity. These guidelines recognize the rights and responsibilities that underpin a vibrant, supportive, and inclusive culture of graduate education.
RIGHTS & RESPONSIBILITIES
- The right to a safe, supportive environment in which individuals can flourish and grow in their pursuit of knowledge
- The right to an environment that emphasizes tolerance, encourages respect for diverse viewpoints, and promotes civility toward others [from 2010 tolerance and civility statement https://hr.msu.edu/policies-procedures/university-wide/tolerance_civility.html]
- The right to a diverse, equitable and inclusive learning environment
- The right to collegiality in scholarly interactions and sharing of resources
- The right to an environment that actively promotes research and creative excellence
Ensuring the actualization of these rights depends on individual members of the community recognizing their role in upholding them, and on a mutual commitment to the shared values underpinning them [see the Foundational Values for Graduate Student and Faculty Mentoring Relationships at Michigan State University]. Sustaining such a community of integrity and excellence is the responsibility of everyone.
- The responsibility to hold one’s self and one another accountable for integrity in educational and research practices, and for reporting behaviors and practices that violate policies
- The responsibility to know and adhere to federal, University and academic unit rules, procedures and policies applicable to teaching, graduate study, research, and creative activities (including those in FERPA, The Code of Teaching Responsibilities, Academic Programs, Graduate Student Rights and Responsibilities, Medical Student Rights and Responsibilities, Academic Freedom for Students at Michigan State University) and to ensure that they are followed at all levels of the university
- The responsibility to respect confidentiality
Effective advising and mentoring of graduate students is the joint responsibility of the University, the Graduate School, graduate degree-granting and program units (hereafter referred to as academic units), the faculty advisors, and the students.