Assignment calculator - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Assignment calculator

The USC Assignment Calculator is a guide for written assessment tasks including reports and essays. Every assessment is different. You may move through some steps faster or slower depending on the assessment. Use the links in this calculator to learn more about the areas you need to improve.

Enter the date you intend to start your assessment and the due date for submission below.

* These links require your USC username and password

Start date
Due date
Assignment name

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  • Time's up! Time to submit
  • Crunch time! Better make a plan and stay on track
  • You've got time if you start now
  • Good work planning ahead. Keep focussed and start early
  • You are so organised! You have plenty of time to plan well

Step 1

Get started
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In Blackboard, get your course outline, the assessment task information and the marking criteria. Things to note:

  • assessment due date
  • word limit
  • referencing style
  • formatting instructions
  • submission details

Step 2

Analyse the task
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Read and understand the assessment task by:

  • identifying key words (direction, limiting and content words)
  • generating ideas
  • making a plan or concept map
  • formulating a research approach

Step 3

Search for quality information
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Use library resources and guides to begin your search.

You will need to:

  • develop your search strategy
  • read your course readings and key texts
  • find and evaluate credible sources in Discover and databases
  • save the full citation for referencing.

Explore the guides for library help or contact the library.

Step 4

Note-taking and using sources
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Start to take careful notes with reference details.

Remember to:

  • paraphrase and summarise the most relevant information
  • look for patterns in the sources you are reading
  • organise your notes and link them to your plan
  • record the full reference as you use each source

Step 5

Write and format your first draft
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Make sure you keep on task when writing.

To do so:

  • write paragraphs that respond to the task, using the information you found
  • follow the structure and format required
  • reference each source as you write
  • demonstrate critical thinking in your writing

Step 6

Edit, proofread, and edit again
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Use a checklist to make sure you have:

  • answered the assessment task and stayed on topic
  • covered all parts and identified any gaps
  • used the correct referencing style
  • aligned to the marking criteria
  • formatted and referenced correctly
  • checked for grammatical and stylistic errors

Step 7

Submit your assessment - well done!
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Make sure you include all parts of your assessment when you submit it. There are no second chances!

  • Do you need to upload the assessment to Blackboard?
  • Have you checked your assessment through SafeAssign and made the necessary changes?
Review your assessment task feedback

When you get your assessment results, read your tutor's feedback. There may be valuable tips to help you improve your next assessment task. Use the links in this calculator to learn more about the areas you need to improve.