There are a few things to consider when writing homework. Not only structured and scientific work can be a challenge, there are many popular mistakes that you can easily avoid. We have 8 dos and 8 don’ts for you, with which nothing stands in the way of your top grade.content
When do I have to write homework?
Table of Contents
- When do I have to write homework?
- Building a term paper
Tips for writing housework: 8 dos and 8 don’ts
- Writing homework: 8 Dos
- Writing homework: 8 don’ts
If you are studying or still going to school, sooner or later you will have to write a term paper. At some schools it is common to write a term paper (also called a technical paper) in order to prepare for the scientific work in the course of study. In the university or college, it is also very likely that you will have to write a term paper (also called term paper). The homework for the individual seminars in turn prepares you for your bachelor’s or master’s thesis .
Building a term paper
In this chapter we have clearly listed the rough structure of a term paper. This will give you a first impression of the structure, which applies to all academic papers regardless of the guideline or the university. For the exact specifications, it is advisable to consult the guidelines of your university. There you will find more about literature sources, theses, argumentation and precise formatting specifications.
- cover sheet
- Table of contents (chapter headings, appendices, page numbers)
- List of abbreviations
- Quote (optional, should introduce or summarize your topic)
- Main part (theory and analysis)
- Conclusion (conclusion and outlook)
- List of figures
- Statutory declaration
Tips for writing housework: 8 dos and 8 don’ts
Depending on the university and degree program, the guidelines that you have to follow may vary. You will often find all the important information about formatting and correct citation in these guides. However, there are times when the guides don’t provide good tips on the content or practice of your term paper. For this reason we have put together the most important dos and don’ts for you. You will find them useful in any type of housework and they will save you from making popular mistakes that could jeopardize your grade.
Writing homework: 8 Dos
The following dos must be observed if you want to get a good grade in your homework. In advance: You should always do your formatting beforehand , otherwise everything could shift and you cannot calculate the number of pages.
Learn to write better
If you know that you will have to write some homework during your studies, you should definitely learn to write better . Writing routine is essential if you want to speed up the writing process. In addition, you will expand your vocabulary at the same time and will have fewer problems finding synonyms. Scientific writing in particular makes it difficult for students to formulate freely and to stay in the flow of writing. Everything has to be carefully thought out and explained using technical terms. If you learn to write better, you will be able to formulate easily understandable sentences more easily, you will be able to use commas better and you will also learn something rhetorical .
Keep an eye out for topics
Most schoolchildren or college students don’t start thinking about a homework topic until it’s almost too late. Unfortunately, at this point you are already under a lot of pressure and you will quickly be satisfied with any topic. It is much more effective if you keep your eyes and ears open during class or seminar. Perhaps your teacher or lecturer mentions a marginal topic that interests you, or you suddenly have an idea yourself.
You should always use small bursts of inspiration and immediately write down what came to your mind. You can do a little research on literature or complete a table of contents within the semester or school year. This takes the pressure off you and increases your chances of finding a great topic that really interests and motivates you.
For some lecturers, it is a requirement that you examine something in your homework that has not yet been examined in the form. The focus should always be on an interest in knowledge and a key question that needs to be answered. In order to avoid that someone else has already found this answer and to increase the relevance of your work, you should research thoroughly.
Doing research is also important to see if there is a research base for your work that you can use. You always need a certain theoretical background for a term paper. By doing thorough research, you can ensure that you don’t have to experience any nasty surprises and that you can relate to other researchers and their work.
Find a topic that really interests you
Of course, your topic should fit the seminar and also take up some content-related aspects that you discussed there. Nevertheless, it is an advantage if you are really interested in your topic. A little passion for writing and motivation for research can significantly improve your grade. If you enjoy the topic, you improve your so-called intrinsic motivation . The most important feature here: You are motivated from within and don’t have to focus solely on getting a good grade. If you have even a deep and can not motivate you, you may be able to also motivation sayings durchzustarten help.
Some lecturers also provide topics, but especially with master’s courses it is common for students to find and structure topics themselves before presenting them to the examiner. If the seminar topic didn’t appeal to you, try to find a niche that interests you. Perhaps you can cover the topic of the seminar more marginally or apply it to something else. Be creative and try new things.
Formulate a clear guiding question
In scientific work there is always the risk of deviating from the actual topic. Especially if you are good at creative writing and like to get lost in your thoughts, you need to be extra careful here. It is helpful to formulate a clear guiding question, the answer of which you make the goal of your work. Even if the heading is a little different, you can ask a specific question about your research topic. Mention them in your introduction and use them as a thread that runs through your entire work. All theories and your analysis should be directed towards this. It is your point of reference when it comes to delimiting content.
Use the correct guide
Since universities offer a wide variety of degree programs, there are also a wealth of guidelines and guidelines for writing homework. Even in a certain subject area, different guidelines are often offered, depending on which focus you choose within your degree program. For German studies, for example, there may be a guide for linguistic and one for literary term papers.
In fact, some instructors may have created their own guides and expect you to follow their individual guidelines exactly. If you follow the wrong guide, it can significantly degrade your grade. So if you are unsure which guide is the right one, ask fellow students or your lecturer for advice. You will probably make an appointment with him for the homework meeting anyway.
A complete cover sheet according to specifications
Universities and technical colleges usually have a fixed specification for the cover sheet, which you should adhere to. The cover sheet is responsible for the first impression of your work. If information is missing or it is not designed according to the guidelines of your university or department, it can happen that the lecturer goes straight to work with a bad feeling. He might get the impression that you didn’t do it carefully or even fear that there are many mistakes in the rest of your homework as well. This could alert him to mistakes that he might otherwise have overlooked.
A sensible structure
In some guides you will only find a rough breakdown of introduction, main part and conclusion. But what about sub-items or headings? Do I differentiate between theory and analysis or do I combine the two? And does the end also need its own heading? There are many questions that arise that are not answered. Often only general information can be found, as the structure always differs individually, of course. Still, a little bit of precision or an example could help you find a suitable outline for your work.
As a rule, teachers and lecturers expect an outline in advance, usually in the form of a table of contents. If your outline is not well planned, there may be misunderstandings when discussing topics with the examiner. However, your ideas should be clearly communicated . So think about headings that already reveal what you will do in the respective chapter. If some headings differ afterwards, or if you realize that a different order would make more sense, you can always change them. It’s just a matter of designing a preliminary structure that will be very helpful later.
Example of a useful structure
In the following we have created an example of a useful structure for you. It may help you a little with writing your own headings. Never call your headlines just “Introduction”, “Main Part” or “Conclusion”. That doesn’t tell anyone anything about your plan, it just raises questions. Break down or rename them. It is important to mention that in scientific papers the sub-chapters are only listed from the second sub-chapter in the table of contents. If there is no second chapter, the first is not mentioned either.
1.1 Issue and aim
1.2 Historical classification
- Theoretical background
2.1 Definition of terms and definitions
2.2 Theory according to X
2.3 Theory according to Y
- Analysis of the question (it is essential to formulate a topic-specific heading here)
- Conclusion / conclusion and outlook (does not have to be formulated in the heading)
It is important that you discuss the outline with your lecturer or teacher. If so, prepare to explain in more detail what exactly you will be doing in each chapter. The better you are prepared and the more precisely everything is discussed, the higher the probability of a good grade.
Writing homework: 8 don’ts
Avoid the following don’ts to get a good grade on your term paper. There are classic mistakes that can cost you a few grade points and that are easy to avoid if you know about them beforehand.
Copying or ghostwriting
At the end of every scientific work, you affirm that you wrote the work independently and that it has not yet been recognized as a study achievement in whole or in part. So if you don’t adhere to this declaration and let a ghostwriter write your homework, you are making yourself liable to prosecution and risking a fine or even your university place. It is the same with attempts at plagiarism or if you copy parts of your housework from another work.
In particular, if you should also send your term paper by email, the examiners can quickly see whether they already have passages of your work in the system. In addition, some stricter lecturers actually sometimes make the effort to look up source references and check whether you have taken over complete formulations one-to-one. So don’t take any risks and avoid copy and paste.
Ask for an extension too late
Many students go to work during the semester break and lose a lot of time as a result. Sometimes there are so many coursework to do that you could run out of time. Especially if you have problems finding a topic and do a lot of research, it can happen that you misjudge the time dimensions. If you want to ask for an extension, it is best to do this right at the beginning of the term paper or when discussing the topic.
If you only realize while you are writing that you have miscalculated something, you can write your lecturer an email at any time. Some react very loosely and like to give extensions because they then have more time to correct, others are more strict and love a tight schedule so that they can better structure their next semester. It is clearly too late if you ask for an extension one week before submission. This doesn’t make a good impression and could affect your grade.
Editing and writing at the same time
If you try to correct everything carefully as you write and read your sentences over and over again after you have written them, you can quickly get out of hand. You might forget important ideas or stop your writing flow and suddenly get blocked.
Take advantage of the phases in which you can write without a break. Interruptions are already preprogrammed due to the source references. Read either after each completed chapter or at the very end. If you want to improve your chances of getting a good grade, you should also let friends or family read about your homework – provided they know about grammar and spelling.
One of the biggest no-gos when writing homework is the modular principle. Many students tend to just write quotations and spontaneous ideas under the appropriate chapters during the literature research, instead of proceeding and formulating step by step. This is problematic in that it costs you a lot of time. When you have written down all sorts of quotes and unfinished formulations, all you have to do in the end is a large, confusing construction kit that you have to put together somehow.
The construction kit can not only cost you a lot of time, it also costs a lot of patience and nerves. But what is worst: You will have to delete a lot again and risk permanently deviating from the topic because you will constantly find quotes or important terms that could possibly still be useful. So you lose the overview, the red thread and the guarantee of a good grade.
Sooner or later it happens to everyone: the double space. It happens accidentally and takes a trained eye to spot it. Meticulous lecturers are a thorn in the side of double spaces and if they discover too many of them, grade points can be deducted.
In order not to risk that, you can use the search field (Ctrl + F) to find out where you accidentally put a double space. When the search box opens, just hit the space bar on your keyboard twice and then hit Enter. All double spaces are displayed.
Dubious internet sources
Some old school professors still haven’t fully resigned themselves to homework sources on the Internet. They’re quick to mark it as dubious and may get the impression that you didn’t want to bother going to the library. If you want to be on the safe side, ask your lecturer beforehand how they feel about internet sources.
It is also okay if you only use reputable and trustworthy sources. This includes, for example, articles in daily newspapers or scientific essays that you can only find online. If your degree program is a bit more modern or deals with different media, internet sources are inevitable anyway.
To go beyond the scope
If you notice that you have miscalculated the scope of your work and you cannot get by with the specified number of pages or words, you should contact your lecturer. Some have no problem correcting a few more pages, others can deduct a few points for this. In any case, exceeding the specified number of pages should make sense and be understandable. When planning your housework, give yourself enough time to make any cuts at the end.
Bad time management
The bad time management can ruin all of your housework. No matter how good your work is – if you can’t finish it at the end, you won’t get a good grade. It is arguably the most common problem faced by students: no buffer. You plan quickly and precisely, but if something goes wrong, the whole schedule is over and the work is endangered. The stress then only causes more things to go wrong.
Especially at the end, problems suddenly arise that one would not have expected. Either the formatting has shifted or you have written too much, suddenly a chapter or even references are missing. In such cases, which sooner or later overtake everyone, it is worth having a buffer. It would be ideal to be finished with the text a week before submission . For those who have less self-discipline , two days should be enough. Keep in mind that things can go wrong in the copy shop or with the PC. Eliminate all disruptions to effective writing.