On becoming a better supervisor: A deconstruction of autoethnography as method for professional development


Although not often applied, the autoethnographic method lends itself for use in professional development practices.  The literature contains a few examples in which autoethnography is used for this purpose, but with the focus solely on the relationship between mentee and mentor that creates the space for professional development to occur.  In the current study, I explored, through a reflective account, the possibilities for using analytic autoethnography for professional development by drawing on the theory of transformative learning.  Although there are some drawbacks in using autoethnography, the method may be a valuable addition to current professional development tools if used by the individual practitioner.

Author Biography

S.M. O'Neil, University of Pretoria
Sumari O’Neil is a registered psychologist (Category: Research) with the Health Professions Council of South Africa. She has completed a PhD in the field of Industrial and Organisational Psychology, specializing in postgraduate research supervision. She also holds a Master of Arts, Honours and Bachelor’s degrees in Psychology, as well as a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education, which were obtained from the University of Pretoria.


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How to Cite
O’Neil, S.M. 2018. “On Becoming a Better Supervisor: A Deconstruction of Autoethnography As Method for Professional Development”. South African Journal of Higher Education 32 (6), 483-501. https://doi.org/10.20853/32-6-2970.