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HOW TO WRITE AN ACADEMIC COURSEWORK CORRECTLY?

HOW TO WRITE AN ACADEMIC COURSEWORK CORRECTLY?

Writing an academic coursework is an integral part of a student's life and thus it is of utmost importance to write it to the best one's abilities. Unfortunately, not everybody can even give a coursework definition, let alone write it properly. Here our article on academic coursework writing comes in handy.

WHAT IS A COURSEWORK?


A coursework is a work, which is written by students or trainees with the aim of learning. Traditionally, it is set by teachers, or by learning guides in self-taught courses. This type of work can include a variety of activities, such as practice, the conduction of experiments, research, and writing (e.g., dissertations, book reports, and essays). For the students at high educational institutions, high schools, and middle schools writing a coursework often involves obtaining grades, which are combined with those of separately evaluated exams to give overall course grades. Unlike exams, students are given a few weeks or days to write their coursework, and are always free to use textbooks, notes, and the Internet for research.
In case of universities, students are usually assigned to write a coursework to enlarge knowledge, improve research skills, and display that they can discuss, reason and deduce practical outcomes from the acquired theoretical knowledge.
An academic coursework is proof to examiners that the student got the grasp of what they have learned during a course or the whole school year. It is an obligatory assignment for students when they take a degree or diploma program, and it is usually regarded as the part of the grade gained in a course.
Some components of a coursework resemble a laboratory work, other sorts of experimental work like polls, surveys, and other observational studies, or can contain scientific research of subjects such as the sciences, where it is hard to prove the grasp of material by means of exams.

HOW TO WRITE A COURSEWORK? STEP-BY-STEP GUIDELINE

Thoroughly choose a topic and define the purpose of your coursework. You should understand all the requirements of your coursework and be knowledgeable about the topic itself. While selecting your topic, try to strike a happy medium: select a topic that is not too trite (because performing a coursework on the same topic everyone does is senseless), but which is also not too specialized and little researched (because sources are indispensable for you, and it is better when you can find them effortlessly).
If you can, narrow the topic down,—make sure that there is only one way to interpret it, and that it conveys your subject in a comprehensible way.
Consult with your teachers, in particular with the one who is a supervisor of your coursework. Find out his/her opinion on the topic you have selected and ask for some pieces of advice on how to narrow or enhance it. Teachers can tell you for sure whether your topic shows promises and prospects, how to start your coursework, what hardships you can come across, etc.
Define the research methods, which can vary depending on your topic. They can encompass experiments, observations, comparisons, analysis, and so on, together with well-known methods, such as learning resources on the subject. To know for sure what exactly you need, consult your supervising teacher about these methods.
Think over where you can dig up all the necessary information, collect the equipment for your research methods, and carry out research. In the process of researching, make notes. Additionally, revise your coursework structure plan and apply corrections, if necessary.
On the grounds of your structure plan and research materials, draw an outline of your coursework. To some extent, an outline is a structure plan but with more details. After you create it, you can write the first draft of your coursework.
Before handing in your coursework, proofread and edit it. To add to it, you must check all the information in it for accuracy, consistency, and credibility.

CHOOSING A TOPIC


Prudent topic selection plays a key role in the way your coursework will be performed. Thus, it is of utmost importance to make a well-thought-out decision. There are different ways of choosing an appropriate topic. For instance, consulting with a supervising teacher may be helpful in narrowing down your subject to one specific topic. However, it is also possible that you will have to make decisions on your own. To do so, move from universals to particulars. Brainstorming and mind mapping will come in handy.
Decide on the field of your research, for instance it is American literature – then select a school: romanticism, realism, decadency, Beat, and so on. For example, you can opt for Beat literature, and one of its best representatives, Jack Kerouac. Continue narrowing the subject down: decide on his particular novel – for instance, On the Road. Then, ponder over problems, characters, events, and relationships depicted in the novel. Having done with all the procedures mentioned above, the topic of your coursework can be the following, “The Personality of Dean Moriarty as Freedom Personified by Jack Kerouac.”
Eventually, remember that in case of a coursework the recipe for success is simple: be interested in the topic you are writing about.

SOME OTHER IMPORTANT POINTS FOR CONSIDERATION

The process of research is fundamental for any coursework. Every time you feel like taking a shortcut or try to skip this stage and start writing, do not do this. In reverse, you must strive to collect as much information from different sources as possible; that means making use of books, websites, outcomes of experiments, etc. Thus, you must allot around 60% of your time to researching. The content of your coursework must consist of precise, relevant, and reliable information. The aim of the information you include in your coursework is to provide your research hypothesis, or thesis statement, and the paper itself must represent an in-depth analysis of the topic.
As a rule, students procrastinate when it comes to a coursework, and get down to writing a coursework when the deadline is approaching. It may be one of the reasons why lots of courseworks are full of mistakes and typos. It happens that typos and inattentiveness can cause a complete negation of the whole argument of your paper. Thus, to avoid it, reread your paper before handing it in; additionally, use MS Word, Google Docs, or some other text-processing software to spot your mistakes easily. Make sure your coursework is easily read, clear, and comprehensible.
Create some subheadings: they are helpful in marking semantic transitions within the text. The usage of transition words will make it easier for you to display how the ideas, arguments, and evidence in your work are interrelated. Pay attention to the length and structure of your sentences; lengthy, complex sentences are harder to comprehend, but short sentences cannot entirely put across your idea. It is vital for you to make sure the words used in your coursework are exact and accurate, and that you entirely understand what they mean.

DOS AND DON'TS

Dos


Make a backup copy of your research sources, and all the work you have performed. Working on a coursework is a time-consuming task, and you never know when your computer may glitch, or something else may go wrong.
Take care of the resources you have used while working on your coursework and check whether they are cited correctly. It is also fundamental for your coursework not to contain any plagiarism.
Try to go without generalizations, simplifications, and general statements. It is not obligatory for you to be excessively scientific, but at the same time do not try to simplify what should not be simplified.
Try to write the final copy of your coursework before the deadline. It is necessary in case your supervising teacher spots some serious mistakes that require correction. If you finish your work beforehand, you will have enough time to apply all the necessary corrections.

Don'ts


Leave your topic the same way as it sprang to your mind. Try to narrow a topic down where it is possible, because if it is ambiguous and not clear, it will make the process of writing even more complicated.
Use informal words like “don’t,” ain’t,” “gonna,” and so on. The language of your coursework is required to be scientific and official.
Put forward new ideas in the conclusion. All ideas and concepts must be introduced in a logical order in the main part.
Make unqualified statements without the backup of referenced data and citations. Some things may surely seem evident; still it is advisable to present supporting evidence to the statements you make.

Common Mistakes


Devoting little time to research. In spite of the fact that this is the most significant phase of writing coursework, many students take a shortcut and start writing without sufficient research.
Not proofreading or editing properly. This is imperative, making a single mistake can influence your whole coursework. Missing a simple “not” in the conclusion and summary may cause the entire argumentation to be denied or ruined.
Handing in your coursework in the nick of time. By doing this, students often rob themselves of time they could spend on double-checking of the paper and correction of the mistakes.
Missed quotations, inappropriate formatting, credulous statements, immoderate simplification (or complication) of the text.
Now you know everything about successful academic coursework writing.

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