Types of Assignments

Research and Writing Assignments

  • When assigning readings, give students experience researching by providing a citation rather than a pdf or copy.
  • When designing a writing assignment, return to your learning outcomes.  What do you want students to get out of this assignment?  How will you evaluate student learning in this assignment?3
  • Be clear about the expectations for the assignment.  Make sure your instructions include enough so your students will know what to include in the paper and how to format it, who the audience is, and how the paper will be graded.1,2
  • Offer several choices or a broad topic so students can work within their interests.
  • Have students submit topics for approval before conducting research or writing.1
  • Model the research process in the classroom: how create an effective research statement, how to choose a database, how to analyze a source, etc.2
  • Bring a librarian to your class for an instruction session, or direct your students to library resources.
  • See Plagiarism section

Assignments Incorporating Library Resources4  

  • An annotated bibliography: The student identifies primary and secondary sources, popular and scholarly publications.  
  • Research journals: Students document the search tools they use. They reflect on the kinds of information they find.  
  • Subject Guide: The student creates a guide introducing someone to the essential literature on a given topic.  
  • Have students compile a glossary of important terms specific to a given topic in your discipline.  
  1. https://www.hamilton.edu/academics/centers/writing/faculty/effective-assignments-writing-tutor-feedback-to-faculty
  2. http://twp.duke.edu/faculty/wid/assignments
  3. http://www.webster.edu/documents/academic-resource-center/writing_assignments.pdf
  4. http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/instruct/assignments.html