6 Thinking About Your Assignment

photograph of Auguste Rodin's statute of The Thinker, a sculpture of a seated man in a contemplative pose with his head resting on his hand

The Thinker” by Auguste Rodin CC0 1.0


When you receive your writing assignment from your instructor, it’s important to stop and think. What are the requirements? What is the purpose of this assignment? What is your instructor asking you to write? Who are you writing for?

Before you begin to write any part of an assignment, think about the requirements and how you plan to meet those requirements. It’s easy to jump into an assignment without stopping to think about and analyze the assignment requirements.

What does it mean to think about and analyze assignment requirements?

It means that you’re considering the purpose of the assignment, the audience for the assignment, the voice you might want to use when you write, and how you will approach the assignment effectively overall.

With each writing assignment, you’re being presented with a particular situation for writing. Learning about assignment requirements and expectations can help you learn to make good decisions about your writing.

Every writing assignment has different expectations. There is no such thing as right, when it comes to writing; instead, try to think about good writing as being writing that is effective in that particular situation.

Adapted from “Thinking about Your Assignment” by Excelsior Online Writing Lab CC BY 4.0


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Academic Writing Basics Copyright © 2019 by Megan Robertson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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