Unsw Essay Writing Basics

The following resources can provide you with strategies to help you with your essay and assignment writing.

Essay writing: the basics

A general outline of the steps to writing essays at university.

Essay and assignment planning

Some helpful advice and strategies about getting started and constructive planning of your essay or assignment.

Answering assignment questions

This guide will help you to better answer and understand your essay questions. It also provides a list of common terms used in assignment questions and their definitions.

Editing checklist

This checklist outlines questions to ask yourself as you are writing your final draft or editing your assignment.

Writing a critical review

Need to write a critical review? Not sure what it is? See our guide for tips on writing a critical review.

Writing an annotated bibliography

This is an assignment that allows you to get acquainted with the material available on a particular topic. This guide to writing an annotated bibliography offers some general advice on getting started.

Reflective writing

Many uni assignments feature reflective components. Although they can vary considerably in terms of their style and scope, here are some common elements and tips to get you started with reflective writing.

Referencing is a system that allows you to acknowledge the contributions and work of others in your writing by citing your sources. A feature of academic writing is that it contains references to the words, information and ideas of others.

All academic essays MUST contain references. Referencing guards against plagiarism, a serious academic offence. Plagiarism is copying someone else's words or ideas and presenting them as your own.

See Plagiarism and academic integrity

Make sure you are familiar with the referencing style your faculty or school requires. Most have guides specifying the system they prefer. Often Schools/Faculties don't mind which system you use as long as it is consistent. If this is the case, use the system you are most comfortable with.

See The Learning Centre guides to various citation styles

Reference lists

Remember to list all the books and articles you use for the essay in a Reference List. This is a list of all works cited in your essay, and should be the final page.


Next step:Editing your essay

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