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Quantum Shift in Postgraduate Research Supervision

Postgraduate research incubates knowledge, innovation and enterprise solutions that propels a nation’s research and development (R&D) agenda and sustainable social provisions. The aim of the research was to ascertain the knowledge, skills and competencies required of academic staff to be effective and excellent supervisors under the prevailing circumstances. The research paper used a qualitative research methodology. The research design used was the discourse examination of the Laclau and Mouffe type supported by document analysis and Focus Groups. The Linguistic methods to discourse analysis are associated with sociolinguistics which looks at the language as socially contextualise, whilst the contemporary methods to discourse analysis pay particular particular attention to the ‘structure’, ‘form’, ‘organization’, ‘order’, or ‘patterns’. Focus Group discussions were held with 50 seasoned academics from various African higher education institutions via a Webinar done using Google Meeting. A total of 450 published papers acquired from Google Scholar were utilized in the document analysis. The study established that good research supervision entails maintaining best way elements, enhancing the skills and knowledge of the supervisee, assisting with the growth of reflective practice, and providing the supervisee with international scholarly exposure with a strong coherence of arguments. It was noticed that virtual supervision works more effectively when students are aware of the potentials and limitations of the virtual environment, and when supervisors prepare students to actively engage in the partnership process.The new Higher Education Policy Education 5.0 requires the knowledge and innovation research and training to create a context in which research students will be expected to complete their degrees more quickly and graduate with a wider range of research capabilities which make them more entrepreneurial and responsive to industry needs.

Key Words: Discourse analysis, Virtual research supervision; PhD supervision; Postgraduate research supervision; effective supervisor; knowledge sharing.