By Paul Besley, BA (Hons) Creative Writing, second year.
It’s coming to that time of the semester when assignment and exam deadlines are looming. It can be a stressful time for students, particularly if this is your first year.
I remember how difficult I found my first assignment. Just understanding what was being asked of me was hard never mind actually answering the question.
Hallam University has lots of support that all students can access. One of the most important is the Skills Centre, located in the library in Adsetts.
The Skills Centre is staffed by academics that are there to help students get the best out of the assignments and exams. They hold workshops for small groups of students on a wide variety of topics and subjects.
I attended two workshops, Critical Writing and Advanced Critical Writing. There were four of us in each session, all studying different degrees. The tutor outlined what we would learn and then asked if anyone had specific requirements. We all had. I had even brought current assignment work to discuss. It was all informal and relaxed with a good discussion around the table including how we, as students, manage time and assignments along with everything else.
We studied how to plan our approach and covered the following topics;
- Understanding the question
- Reporting Verbs (What words to use to highlight your argument)
- How to structure an assignment
There were also links to resources that can be used for further study.
I found it incredibly helpful and will definitely be using the methods in my upcoming assignments.
Further workshops were available; the Skills Centre will also look at providing workshops to cover a specific topic if it is needed. You can even get feedback on your work. It is a fantastic asset to students and the university.