Journal of Educational Research and Practice




A number of theoretical models have been suggested for how to mentor doctoral students. However, they tend to rely on hierarchical and authoritarian relationships between the faculty and students. Such models tend to create dependency and fear of the faculty, resulting in a reluctance in coming to the mentor for guidance. Such models do not tend to work well with online adult doctoral students with jobs and families. This paper proposes a model of positive leadership for online doctoral mentors, where mentors are accessible and create an environment where success is assumed and social support is provided by both the mentor and peers. In this model of mentorship, students are encouraged to problem solve their deficiencies and work out a plan to address them. Gratitude is expressed by the mentor and encouraged in students to recognize those who have helped them to progress. The paper includes suggestions, examples, and methods to aid the mentor in positive leadership of doctoral students.