n South African Journal of Higher Education - Mentees' views of a structured mentoring programme at Unisa




The Management of one college at Unisa initiated a structured mentoring programme to develop researchers, among others. This article reports the views of 43 mentees of the programme one year after implementation. The research design was a survey. The items in a questionnaire were influenced by the self-efficacy theory and the constructivist views of learning. The findings indicate that the mentees learnt to set goals, and to plan to achieve these goals within predetermined time frames; they increased their knowledge of, and skills in research and publication; they gained motivation for research and confidence as researchers; and they matured as academics and learnt how to advance their careers. Certain challenges were identified, which included the mismatching of mentoring pairs, the lack of quality time for research projects, and a need for more institutional research support, e.g. in relation to academic leave and a help desk. The article indicates that mentoring can be largely successful even in exceptional contexts, as pointed out.


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