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Do-It-Yourself Library: Understand my Assignment

I Need Help To Understand My Assignment

Reading your assignment details and rubric carefully will help you plan for your writing process. Here are things to look for in the assignment instructions:

Purpose of the assignment. What should your research project accomplish? What is the role of research and of information sources in the assignment? This will help you determine your research process and timeline. (If you still have questions after closely reading the assignment, ask your instructor.)
Topic guidance and suggestions Some instructors offer specific suggestions, while others provide guidelines to help you choose a topic yourself. Check for points and questions the instructor wants you to address in your assignment. For more help, visit Choosing a Good Topic.
Type(s) of recommended sources for supporting your research. Think about where you might need to look for the recommended sources. Some will be available through the NWACC Library, and some may be freely available on the Web. For more information see Deciding Where to Search.
Due date This will help you determine when you need to start finding sources, reading and analyzing them, and developing your paper or project. Some assignments have different parts due at different times, so check all the due dates.
Length of the assignment This will help you determine the scope of your topic and to know the page numbers or presentation style and length.
Get Citation Style and formatting information Font size, spacing, and citation style(including the edition or the version the instructor wants you to follow). This NWACC Library Citation Help guide can help with this. 
Highlight or underline the important assignment elements Highlight the elements that are key to understanding your assignment. If you cannot describe what your assignment is about to someone else, re-read the assignment sheet or talk with your instructor.