This is a guest post by The Student Housing Company
University is an amazing experience, but not if youíre stressed-out about coursework. Follow our guide to succeeding in your assignments and your time at uni will be as fun as it should be.
Manage Your Time
The first step to writing a great piece of coursework is managing your time effectively. So as soon as you know the deadlines for your exams and coursework, note them down. This way, you wonít have any nasty surprises when it comes to deadline time! Youíll also be able to dedicate enough time to every essay you have.
Managing your time also helps you fit in important breaks, which help you to concentrate and relax when you need to. By working at a steady pace and taking regular breaks, youíre less likely to make mistakes and stress-out towards the end of your assignments.
Know the Rules
Before you begin researching your coursework, read through the guidelines. Information about word-counts, how your writing will be judged, and how you should submit your essay, should all be provided to you in your course handbook or other documents.
If you have read through these and you are still unsure, speak to your tutors and department support staff. They are there to help you with any concerns you have at uni, so always speak to them if something is unclear.
Itís also a great idea to speak to the lecturer who has set the assignment. Is there anything you arenít sure about? How could you get those top marks? Is there any advice that they can give for this particular essay?
Read, Read, Read
This is the time-consuming part! Although reading about your subject may seem a little drawn-out and maybe even boring at times, it really is the foundation to a solid piece of academic writing.
Remember: the more you read at the start, the sooner youíll formulate your own ideas, and the more youíll have to say in your coursework. This will make it much weightier and more interesting for your marker Ė and obviously, the more impressive and informed your essay, the higher your marks will be.
Planning Makes Perfect
Hold on Ė you canít start writing yet! Although it can be tempting, writing without a plan can make your writing seem disorganised (mainly because it is). To get your assignment just right, plan out everything youíre going to say beforehand. Firstly, try brainstorming all of the info youíve absorbed about the topic, then try to plan it out in a coherent and digestible way that your reader will understand.
When youíre creating the plan, think about everything that your reading has taught you. Jot down a list of the five or six points you want to make. You should also think about advice from your tutor, and the highlights from your lectures and seminars.
Now itís time to take the plunge and start writing! This sounds a lot easier than it actually is. After all the preparation and planning, it can actually be difficult to get that first sentence written down. If you struggle with intros generally Ė as many people do Ė just leave that part till the end and start by jumping straight into your main points.
If you experience a little writer's block, try putting pen to paper and noting down a few thoughts on the subject. Usually, your creative juices will start flowing and youíll be able to follow your plan through the rest of the essay.
Once youíve finished your essay, itís time to check through it carefully. The editing process can be a little painstaking, but itís certainly worth it. You donít want your marker picking up on sloppy grammatical errors, typos or embarrassing spelling mistakes when you couldíve corrected them yourself. When you think youíve got it looking its best, print it out and give it yet another proofread Ė that can make a huge difference, for some reason.
Better still, get someone else to read through it from an English perspective, if possible. Proofreading your own work can be a dangerous game, because your brain might end up reading what it wants to read, rather than whatís actually down on the page.
Even the most chilled-out student can get worked-up over coursework, so always remember that itís important to take breaks and relax at home too.
The Student Housing Company provides safe and comfortable accommodation for students across the UK & Ireland. If youíre looking for the perfect pad this year, contact us today and weíll be able to help.