Advising & Mentoring
Yale is one of the best places in the world for you to make the transformation from student to independent researcher, from consumer to producer of knowledge. Along the way, you will weave together a network of advisers and mentors who will support you in the pursuit of your intellectual and professional goals. Graduate education is a collaborative enterprise: you are not alone. Yale’s many advisers and mentors are here to help you in this intellectual journey.
Advising at Yale
Graduate advising guides students through academic requirements, degree milestones, producing a thesis or dissertation, and preparation for the major components of an academic career (teaching, research, and publication). During your degree program, you will find both formal and informal academic advisers in your department or program who will work with you as you plan to meet your degree milestones and, ultimately, to prepare for your career after graduate school.
The Graduate School's Guide to Advising Processes for Faculty and Students is a resource to help you think about your goals in relation to advising. You should use it to discuss expectations with faculty members prior to choosing a principal faculty adviser, and subsequently, as needed, throughout your time in graduate school.
In addition, departments and programs maintain their own advising guidelines for their students and faculty. These are available on the individual program pages for the Graduate School's Programs of Study.
Mentoring at Yale
During your time at Yale you will also be encouraged to create a network of mentors who will support you broadly in your professional development and help you to balance your personal and professional lives.
Mentorship is a professional relationship in which more experienced colleague(s) offer(s) holistic feedback and guidance, both professional and personal, to a mentee. Because no single mentor can provide advice in all areas of personal and professional development, you should cultivate a network of mentors from amongst faculty, staff, peers, and alumni. Mentoring may include academic advising but transcends guidance on coursework and academic milestones to address a student’s professional development in the broadest sense. Regular and clear communication, as well as an understanding of expectations, are shared responsibilities of both parties and are critical to an effective mentoring relationship. Mentors support their mentees as they learn to balance their personal and professional lives and identify long-term career goals. In the process, mentees learn how to create and maintain a mutually supportive professional network and even to become mentors themselves.
The Graduate School is committed to fostering and sustaining mentoring networks for graduate students in all programs and departments. See below for resources that will help you create a mentoring network that supports your professional and personal goals.
Advising & Mentoring Resources
PDF — 1.6 MB
The Graduate School's guide for faculty and students on building and navigating successful advising relationships
PDF — 28.38 KB
Mentoring agreements (sometimes referred to as “compacts”) are common in the sciences as a tool to guide and define collaboration between faculty, graduate students, and/or postdocs in a lab setting. This template mentoring agreement has been adapted from the American Association of Medical Colleges and the Advising Agreement between Graduate Students and Faculty at Brown University.
PDF — 175.5 KB
The Graduate School Dean's Office has developed this brief guide for structuring your mentoring conversations to aid in your academic and professional development.
The University of Michigan’s mentoring and advising resources include sample models for developing shared mentoring expectations across the disciplines and separate guides for faculty and students on graduate student mentoring.
The Duke Graduate School has created a variety of resources to support graduate students and faculty in building strong mentoring relationships.
The Council of Graduate Schools maintains an array of resources to support culturally aware mentoring across the disciplines in graduate education.
Advising & Mentoring
Yale is one of the best places in the world for you to make the transformation from student to independent researcher, from consumer to producer of knowledge. Along the way, you will weave together a network of advisers and mentors who will support you in the pursuit of your intellectual and professional goals. Graduate education is a collaborative enterprise: You are not alone. Yale’s many advisers and mentors are here to help you in this intellectual journey.