Research mentoring schemes: A personalised needs-led approach
Participating in a mentoring scheme, as mentor or mentee, is a recognised form of researcher development. Vitae (2019) define mentoring as ‘an ongoing, usually long-term, relationship between a more experienced or qualified person (the mentor) and a “mentee”’, which is designed to guide and support mentee development. Our experience within a University School of Education has revealed some complexities to consider when managing a researcher mentoring scheme. White et al. (2014) described the School terrain as undulating, with roles shifting constantly so that developing as a researcher may involve engaging with different mentors at different times for different issues. Colleagues are experienced professionals and mentoring needs to reflect their diverse backgrounds, areas of interest and the research culture within and beyond the School. In this thought-piece we summarise types of researcher mentoring arising within the School and describe a ‘personalised needs-led’ (Jarvis et al., 2012:37, original emphasis) approach to mentoring.