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Writing the assignment

Task Sub-tasks

Make an outline draft

  • List the ideas you will use under the relevant heading.
  • Make a list of all references.
  • Go over the outline and make sure you have addressed all points of the question.

Write your first draft

  • Expand each idea into a paragraph.
  • Arrange the paragraphs into a logical sequence.
  • Write simply and clearly, using short grammatical sentences.
  • Use your own words as much as possible (See Acknowledging your sources).
  • Link the paragraphs.
  • Redraft if necessary.

Write using scientific style

  • Use correct scientific terms wherever possible.
  • Write formal generic terms in italics (eg Eucalyptus regnans). When the name of the genus has been established it is permissible to use the abbreviated format (eg E. regnans). Informal names (eg eucalypts) are written in normal text.
  • Describe accurately and precisely. Use the passive voice (eg 'The data are plotted in Table 1' rather than 'I plotted the data in Table 1').
  • Thoroughly explain tables and figures. Make sure you refer to any figure or table used in your text. Make sure you number and label all figures and tables appropriately (eg 'Table 1: Mollusc varieties found in Northern Queensland'; 'Figure 2: Distribution of Eucalyptus regnans in Victoria').
  • Use acronyms correctly. Write the words in full the first time and add the acronym in brackets eg. 'El Nino and the Southern Oscillation (ENSO)'. Thereafter, simply use the acronym (eg ENSO).
  • Reference all materials, tables and figures you have used appropriately.

Prepare the final draft

  • Re-read, and rewrite if necessary.
  • Write the introduction and conclusion last.
  • Leave the draft at least 48 hours before final proof-reading.
  • Complete the cover sheet.
  • Submit the assignment on time.
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