Building Relationships Around Tasks: Psychological Contracts in Faculty-Doctoral Student Collaborations

Date of Original Version



Working Paper

Abstract or Description

Psychological contracts theory is applied to the study of faculty-doctoral student collaborations. Through a survey of 170 doctoral students, four types of psychological contracts are investigated. The quality of collaboration and frequency of meetings are found to differ significantly across these contract types. In addition, quality of collaboration and meeting frequency varied significantly across collaborations using different research methods (e.g, laboratory work, theory building) and disciplinary paradigms (i.e., high and low consensus). A comparison sample of 46 faculty from the same departments supported several trends observed in the doctoral student data.