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Assignment Checklist: Assignment Checklist

Assignment Sheet Checklist

Assignment Sheet Checklist

You’re more likely to get what you want if you ask for it specifically. Consider these questions when evaluating your assignment sheets.

Have you:

  • Clearly, succinctly explained what you want?

    • Students may need more than “write a 6-page paper on X.” Explain whether you want a critical analysis, argumentative paper, etc. to help them focus their efforts. 

    • Assigning an “audience” can help them choose an appropriate approach. Writing a paper for you may give them the impression that they don’t need to explain things covered in class.

    • Be concise in your descriptions. Too many suggestions and restrictions can overwhelm.

  • Given specific guidelines for an acceptable paper or project?

    • Provide important details such as number of pages, citation style, formatting requirements, etc.

    • If you want your students to use primary sources, academic journal articles, quantitative analyses, a particular film, etc., let them know.

    • Consider providing an example of an acceptable submission and/or acceptable information types.

      • If using a previous student’s paper, be sure to get permission.

  • Stated objectives / purpose / rationale of assignment?

    • Tell students how and why this assignment is important. This may quell some negative attitudes, and may help you, too, in clarifying your expectations.

  • Scheduled a timeline?

    • Provide due dates for outlines, drafts, etc. Treat writing as a process so it doesn’t end up being a procrastinated, one-night activity.

  • Provided grading criteria?

    • Offer your grading rubric. Knowing how they are graded may help students turn in better papers.

  • Forbidden the use of “the Internet?”

    • We all know the Web can be a dangerous place for information retrieval, but it can also be a treasure trove. Plus, all of the Library’s databases are available via the Internet, as well as many statistics and open-source scholarly sources. If forbidding use of something, be specific.

  • Involved the Library?

    • Consult with a librarian to ensure that our collection can support your student’s informational needs. This can eliminate frustration for your students, the library, and you!

    • Invite us to speak to your classes. We can show your students how to find and use our resources.

    • Ask us to create a list of relevant resources for your class. You can direct your students to it and/or link to it via CourseConnect. 

    • Add us to your CourseConnect page. You can insert the library chat box easily.

    • Encourage them to use the library and/or to make research consultuation appointments with us. We are all willing and able to set time aside to help students on their assignments.