Don't we all wish that there was some magic wand that we could wave that would ensure that we always do well in assignments? Unfortunately there isn't. There is however, a checklist that you can follow which in my experience makes assignments less stressful, and more likely to be successful.
Plan ahead of time
One of my professors said, it takes almost 50% more time than expected to complete an assignment, which is something that l have found to be true. Especially when it comes to group assignments, it is pivotal to keep at least a week spare towards the end, to ensure that you have the time to complete tasks. For individual assignments, this would help you have that extra day or two of much needed rest, making sure you still have ample time to get everything done.
Do plenty of reading
This is the most important part of an assignment - the reading. Take the first few days just to read and familiarise yourself with the subject; ensuring that you’re reading as many perspectives as possible. The points that you feel you want to highlight, start jotting them down in a rough document. Once you feel confident enough that you think you understand where you want to go with this, go back to the document and visualise how you want the final essay to flow.
Have your own perspective
Your professors have to go through a lot of assignments and so you definitely should aim to stand out. What new take, or individuality can you add to your assignment that no one else can? There always is an untold version of a topic, aim to find that and explore that. Develop a specific angle for your topic and stick to it.
Use the comments section on Word
This is something that I particularly use a lot. Often when we are writing a big chunk of an assignment, we may get stuck on a particular line / phrase /idea. For me, rather than stopping writing altogether and deliberating over this part, I'd rather carry on in my flow and continue writing my assignment while I have the ideas in my mind. For me, I just write whatever I think at the time but add a comment on word onto the line which I was unsure of. This then works as a reminder for you to come back to it at a later time and improve it. It is something that I find to be helpful. It means that later, when you are going through the draft, you already know which sections you need to tackle first.
Ask for help when you need it
I have seen a lot of students struggling alone because they simply don’t ask for help. The university has great resources, from the library advice team to skills for learning that would be very happy to sit down and have a chat with you about your work. Most tutors that I have come across are also rather accommodating as long as you give them a little time to get back to you, or you could always set up a meeting with them and ask them any questions or doubts you might have. These few questions that are answered could really help improve your grade and leave you way less stressed than if you just simply work on assumptions. Help is there, all you need is to use it.
Assignments are a part and parcel of student life, and there is just no way around them. What I find the most helpful is taking a genuine interest in them, rather than thinking of them as a task or a burden. Enjoy the actual process of writing an assignment and I find that the final outcome comes out a lot better. After all, they are not going anywhere, you might as well soak in the joy of it.