Good Mentoring: Fostering Excellent Practice in Higher Education
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More About This Title Good Mentoring: Fostering Excellent Practice in Higher Education


"We pass on our traits through our genes but our cherished values, beliefs, and practices are transmitted through those units of meaning called memes. This remarkable book provides an authoritative account of how 'good work' endures in the sciences—and has profound implications for the quality of work across the professional landscape." —Howard Gardner, editor, Responsibility at Work, and Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education, Harvard University

"This book should sow the seeds of greatness for protégés and mentors alike, and well beyond the discipline of science. Mentoring lineages are the hallmark of disciplines that endure and have impact, a reality that the authors powerfully communicate." —Carol A. Mullen, editor, Mentoring & Tutoring: Partnership in Learning, and professor and chair, Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations, University of North Carolina at Greensboro

"Good Mentoring is a landmark study with implications for the continued vibrancy of any discipline. This is a fresh, eye-opening perspective on the social transmission of professional lineages." —Daniel Goleman, author, Emotional Intelligence and Social Intelligence


Jeanne Nakamura is assistant professor in the School of Behavioral and Organizational Sciences and codirector of the Quality of Life Research Center at Claremont Graduate University.

David J. Shernoff is associate professor in the Department of Leadership, Educational Psychology, and Foundations at Northern Illinois University.

Charles H. Hooker, an attorney at Kilpatrick Stockton LLP, conducted research on human development, shared leadership, and group mentoring while working on the GoodWork Project.


The Authors ix

Foreword xi

Preface xvii

Acknowledgments xxv

1. Why Mentoring? 1

Part One: Three Examples of Good Mentoring 29

2. The Naturalist 33

3. The Physician-Scientist 63

4. The Moralist 91

Part Two: How Good Mentoring Works 119

5. Values, Practices, and Knowledge Through the Generations 121

6. How Values, Practices, and Knowledge Are Transmitted 155

7. Supportive Relationships as the Context for Intergenerational Influence 187

Part Three: Promoting Good Mentoring 219

8. What Have We Learned? 221

9. Where Do We Go from Here? 251

Appendix A: Data Collection, Coding, and Analyses 269

Appendix B: Science Apprenticeship Study—G2 and G3

Interview Questions 275

Appendix C: Global Code Sheet 285

References 289

Index 297


“Having a mentor can be a great experience or it can be disappointing. As advisors, we know why it is important that students have a great mentoring experience, but often how to cultivate a great experience is not addressed. Jeanne Nakamura and David Shernoff, in their new book Good Mentoring, strive to define good mentoring and offer details on how it can be achieved.

To reach this goal, the authors conducted a research study to determine the practices that make mentors effective and what kind of relationships support good mentoring. Though the authors conducted their research in the field of science, the results can be applied to many fields. 

Readers…will find good suggestions for anyone striving to become a good mentor.”

NACADA Journal, Issue 30(1) (Spring 2010)