Updated: Mar 26
A students’ coursework reveals their writing skills and understanding of a subject matter. For a coursework to be considered high quality, it must meet a set of requirements. Writing among others such as relevant research, good time management and the list goes on. We have provided a breakdown for writing a coursework and what each section should include.
Ensure to always confirm with your lecturer whether your chosen topic meets the requirements, it never hurts to double check.
When deciding on a topic ensure you keep in mind the coursework requirements, this helps reduce the time you waste on information that’s irrelevant or too broad.
The earlier you plan, the better likelihood of achieving a higher grade, set a goal to write 200 words a day rather than 1500 the night before. Also check the word limit before starting.
When writing your coursework, it can be helpful to complete the introduction section last, this is because once you have written your paper you have a much clearer understanding of your topic and the direction it has taken to be completed.
Coursework papers are different to essays as they normally require more research and more detailed explanations. A coursework will also have a practical element designed to test certain skills on a subject. You must be vigilant in your research, analysis and finally presentation.
Plan as soon as you are given the task, this gives ample time for planning your research and coursework, to actually executing the objectives. Ideally, choosing a topic that you are enthusiastic about really helps keep your interest.
You must plan what materials you require, this will come from gathering credible data sources on your topic and always follow coursework handbook instructions.
Ensure you are aware of the deadlines such as first and final drafts, this is normally in the coursework handbook. In order to avoid missing the deadline, last minute changes and avoidable grammar mistakes, you have to plan early. Set your own deadlines and stick to them.
An essential element of your coursework is the research, you must ensure credible sources are always used, triangulating your research helps solidify your argument. Always research the background theory on your chosen topic to better understand the most up to date knowledge.
You can use library resources, books, journals, newspapers, the internet, class materials and much more for your research. If unsure, you can check a journal’s credibility by searching its’ rank on Google. Here is a list of other resources:
Google Scholar - https://scholar.google.com/
Microsoft Academic - https://academic.microsoft.com/home
Your Institution’s Online Library Collection
Some courses require researching a hypothesis which provides the reason for the experiment. It’s important to stay relevant to the test to avoid losing track and use proper scientific methods for experiments.
Information collected for a coursework can be in the form of conducting surveys, handing out questionnaires, gathering relevant data and much more. When it comes to analysing your results, you should start taking notes along the way, this helps when it comes to writing up the coursework.
Writing your Coursework
Structuring the coursework comes ones you have an acceptable topic and conducted good research. Your lecturer may provide previous examples of coursework, don’t cling on to this or the topic idea, but use it if you're in need of help. The normal structure of a coursework is Introduction, Main Body and Conclusion.
Introduction (10% of word count) – You are sometimes required to write a summary before the introduction, this summarises your whole paper in one paragraph. However, if this is not the case, the introduction is your starting point. This section draws the reader’s attention. It should start by clearly explaining the objectives. Make it interesting and compelling to the reader.
Main Body (80% of word count)- This contains the main arguments, relevant research on the topic and develops the coursework with your research results. You must write clearly without repeating your words, and a good rule of thumb is to have a reference every 100 or so words, so you’re being concise and using sources to back your arguments.
Conclusion (10% of word count) – This section reinforces your main ideas and arguments of the coursework and what the results of your research has proven. Writing a solid conclusion is essential to leaving the marker with a good impression.
Now that you've read some great tips to writing a coursework, click here for excellent pro tips on writing an essay.