The Supervisor of Undergraduate Dissertations in a Web-Based Context: How Much Support and How to Give it?




Higher education, undergraduate dissertation, supervisor’s support, technological knowledge, technological tools


The provision of support has always been central to the role of the undergraduate dissertation (UD) supervisor, but little research has been done on its contextual determinants in web-facilitated contexts. Beyond the general recognition of the importance of institutional support for the development of supervisors’ technological and pedagogical knowledge and the importance of technology and pedagogy in maximizing the impact of supervisors’ support for students, the effect of technology tools and students’ prior skills on the type and level of supervisors’ support is not well understood. Drawing partially on the Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework, the present work uses Partial-Least Square Structural Equation Modelling to examine the effect of supervisors’ Technological Pedagogical Knowledge (TPK), their perception of students’ soft skills, and the technology tools they use (face-to-face, social media or a learning management system) on the level of educational and motivational support they provide. The results indicate that institutional support to UD supervisors positively affects their TPK, which in turn positively affects their educational and motivational support to students. However, supervisors’ educational and motivational support is inversely related to their perception of students’ soft skills and is also affected by the technological tools used. In short, supervision styles are not static since different contextual factors affect the management of the process of supervision. The implications for UD supervision are discussed, and some recommendations are proposed in the article.


Author Biographies

Najib Bouhout, Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah University, Fes, Morocco

Najib Bouhout is a teacher assistant at the Department of English Studies, Faculty of Letters
and the Human Sciences, USMBA, Fez, Morocco. He got a PhD in Applied Linguistics from
the same faculty in 2018. His main research interests include teacher professional development,
discourse and conversation analysis.

Aziz Askitou, Multidisciplinary Faculty of Nador, Nador, Morocco

Aziz Askitouis a teacher assistant at the Multidisciplinary Faculty of Nador. He got a PhD in Applied Linguistics from Mohamed 1st University, Oujda in 2018. He was a Fulbright visiting fellow at Colby College, USA. His main research interests include critical applied linguistics,
social justice education, and intercultural education.


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Section II