Coursework: Essay

 

The Brief

1)      A short literature review on the importance of employability for graduates

2)      A mini reflection on how you can develop your own employability in order to secure a graduate role

3)      An analysis of an organisation’s graduate recruitment, focusing on what are the key requirements they expect potential candidates to possess.

There will be a specific session in the workshops where we will cover each assignment, after which you will be able to focus on producing the individual task. You will be required to submit all 3 pieces of written work together via blackboard. Tutors will not be able to read your drafts, but can answer specific questions and give you suggestions on how to create a good structure/plan for each.

Part B (1500 words) focuses on your employability, and is designed to help you develop the skills needed to identify future opportunities in terms of employment, study etc., and to enable you to apply for a graduate job. Your submission for Part B will comprise of four items:

  • The relevant job advert or course description
  • A CV and covering letter to accompany, tailored to suit the specific job advert you have selected (or PG course you wish to apply for).
  • An outline of your desired graduate role and a supporting template showing whether and how you meet the job specification for the role
  • A detailed development plan showing what you will do to acquire any skills or professional accreditation that might be required and you feel should be strengthened.

 

This must be written and submitted as one word document, which must not exceed 3000 words in length.

Assignment Guidance.

Part A (70%) and Part B (30%) must be submitted via Blackboard as a single word document of no more than 3000 words.

Part A (70%)

  Theory & Literature Evidence of reflection and analysis of strengths & weakness for graduate role Evaluation of ‘desired’ graduate labour market & needs of employers Structure & Referencing
70+ Clear and balanced understanding of the topics covered.

 

Excellent use of course materials (not too much or little) and clear evidence of wider reading of academic and trade press sources.

 

Will have conducted own literature searches.

 

Specific examples used to produce a highly focused and insightful reflection, learning and future action.

 

Examples are well-chosen yet concise. Not too much description.

 

Very good balance between theory and practice

 

Clearly and explicitly answers the brief.

 

Demonstrates excellent

understanding of the graduate labour market and the needs of employers in relation to new graduates

 

Views and opinions are clearly and consistently supported/justified

 

 

The report has a clear, informative introduction and discussion. Ideas are marshalled coherently, with arguments logically progressed throughout the piece.

 

Writing style is clear, succinct and has an appropriately academic tone.

 

Referencing is complete, accurate and follows the Harvard protocol.

60 – 69 Shows evidence of reading and an ability to draw on this to construct a generally convincing report. Understands the cited material.

 

Good use of course materials and some evidence of wider reading of academic sources.

 

Will have conducted own literature searches.

Specific examples used to produce a focused reflection and awareness/learning.

 

Examples are good and generate understanding.

 

Good balance between theory and practice, perhaps could be more literature-driven.

 

Answers the brief competently.

 

Demonstrates understanding but does not consistently locate their discussion in contemporary debates

 

Views and opinions are readily expressed but not consistently supported/ justified.

 

The report follows a clear structure with an introduction, main arguments and discussion.  Occasionally discussion is not coherently linked together.

 

Writing style is clear with some grammatical errors or non-academic habits.

 

50 – 59 Some evidence of reading although not always used effectively and/or wider reading needed.

 

May use technical language without showing full understanding.

 

Predominantly core materials, sometimes used quite well but could go deeper into cited sources.

There is evidence of some questioning and standing back. However the work is in need of more in depth analyses in places.

 

Examples are good yet veer toward description, and away from integrating literature.

 

Balance between theory and practice leaning toward the latter

 

Addresses the brief satisfactorily.

Relatively descriptive and fails to consistently engage in meaningful discussion of the graduate labour market and the needs of employers

 

Numerous statements are made without sufficient justification or links to relevant theories or literature.

 

 

There is an introduction and concluding remarks but there may be some structural weaknesses, for example, illogical flow, limited signposting, and the lack of a coherent argument.

 

Referencing does not always follow Harvard style and/or there are some inaccuracies.

40 – 49 Limited use of literature. Often sources were not suitably academic.

 

Uses technical language but not showing full understanding

 

Uses mainly core materials without expanding much

 

Statements are largely a descriptive account. Examples are briefly reviewed and not consistently developed in depth.

 

Content and substance are limited in places with little evidence of any reflective and analytical skills.

 

Missing the point of the work – could do more to address the brief

 

Includes an attempt to answer the question set however this is done in a descriptive

 

In places there are unjustified or sparse expression of views and opinions with limited use of relevant theories and literature.

 

 

Structure is muddled and /or introduction and conclusions have been omitted or are underdeveloped.

 

Writing style is generally clear although contains numerous errors and a non-academic tone.

 

Referencing does not follow Harvard style and/or there are major inaccuracies / omissions.

35 – 39 (marginal fail) Insufficient evidence of reading and significant errors in understanding.

 

Broad reference to topics, but very little clear engagement with core or extra materials.

Mainly or purely descriptive commentary with few and/or weak examples and limited insights.

 

Little or no evidence of reflection or analysis.

 

Needs to more explicitly address the brief.

 

Fails to sufficiently address the question set and does not engage with detailed and varied debate.

 

The views and opinions are unsubstantiated with weak and/or no support from relevant theories and literature.

 

 

 

The work is not presented in a suitable format, and fails to follow the advice given around the structure of a report.

 

The work is poorly written and/or unclear

 

Major errors in referencing.

< 34% Almost no evidence of reading and significant errors in understanding.

 

Very poor understanding of the topics, and very little evidence of engagement with core or extra materials

No analysis or reflection with very poor, very few, irrelevant or no illustrations or examples.

 

 

Does not address the brief.

Fails to address the question set and does not engage with detailed and varied debate.

 

Unsupported views, opinions and assertions are expressed leading to poor judgements

 

 

The work is not presented in a suitable format, and fails to follow the advice given around the structure of a report.

 

The work is poorly written and/or unclear

 

Major errors in referencing.

 

 

Part B (30%)

Mark CV Cover Letter Skills Outline PDP
100 An excellent and extremely well-developed CV, evidencing relevant skills, knowledge and experience to a very high standard. An excellent cover letter, fully tailored to meet the role’s requirements and demonstrate the candidate’s suitability All skills from the role are outlined fully and equally pertinent examples from the candidate’s background are presented An excellent PDP, with extremely clear objectives, specific action plan, resources required and possible sources for support, fully linked to the role.
80 A very good and well-developed CV, evidencing relevant skills, knowledge and experience to a high standard. A very good cover letter, tailored to a very good standard to meet the role’s requirements and demonstrate the candidate’s suitability Almost all skills from the role are outlined and pertinent examples from the candidate’s background are presented to a very good standard A very good PDP with quite clear objectives, a sound action plan, resources required and sources of support, linked to the role to a very good extent
60 A good and reasonably developed CV, evidencing relevant skills, knowledge and experience to a good standard A good cover letter, tailored to a good standard to meet the role’s requirements and demonstrate the candidate’s suitability Most skills from the roles are outlined and pertinent examples from the candidate’s background presented to a good standard. A good PDP, with mostly clear objectives, a reasonable action plan, resources required and sources of support, linked to the role to a good extent
40 An adequately developed CV, evidencing relevant skills, knowledge and experience to a pass standard. An adequate cover letter, tailored to a basic standard to meet the role’s requirement and demonstrate the candidate’s suitability Some of the skills from the role are outlined and a few pertinent examples from the candidate’s background are presented to a basic standard. An adequate PDP, with adequate objectives, an acceptable action plan, resources required and sources of support, loosely linked with the role
20 An inadequately developed CV, not evidencing relevant skills, knowledge and experience to an acceptable submission. An inadequate cover letter, not tailored sufficiently to meet the role’s requirements and demonstrates the candidate’s suitability Inadequate cover of the skills outlined in the role and subpar examples from the candidate’s background are presented. Inadequate PDP, lacking in terms of specific objectives, acceptable action plan, resources required and sources of support. Not linked with the role.
0 Incomplete or non-submission, failing to completely meet the required task Incomplete or non-submission, failing to completely meet the required task Incomplete or non-submission, failing to completely meet the required task Incomplete or non-submission, failing to completely meet the required task

 

Formative Feedback and within Module Assignment Support

Formative feedback provides opportunities to reflect on your ongoing work and preparation for your assignment. This is given within your tutorials which run every week; all students are timetabled to be able to attend one of these.  Tutorials will include some work on the assignment, this will include: how to answer the question, what is expected of you, assistance with writing, and constructing/planning your answers, so please:

·        DO attend all tutorials

·         You can also arrange to discuss your assignment with your seminar tutor (however, we do not read drafts)

 

Format

All work should be word processed in 12 point font Calibri, Times New Roman or Arial and double spaced.

 

Please use the following file format(s): .doc / .docx (please note that files submitted in formats associated with Apple Mac computers are not able to be opened, and thus, not able to be marked. It is your responsibility to ensure that you submit your coursework in the appropriate format)

 

Please ensure that you provide the following details on the first page of your coursework:

  • Student ID Number
  • Module Name and Code
  • Word Count

 

Word Limit

  • The word limit for part A is 1500 words with an additional 1500 words for Part B.  Writing beyond this maximum limit will not be read or marked
  • Word count includes everything in the main body of the essay (including headings, tables, citations, quotes, lists, acronyms and numbers expressed as digits or in words. etc.)
  • The reference/ bibliography pages and any Appendix at the end are excluded from the word count.
  • Appendices are not expected, if you do decide to use appendices remember these will NOT be marked. The marker may or may not refer to the Appendices: do not depend upon material contained in Appendices to develop the discussion in the main body of your essay.

 

You can view the UWE word count policy here: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/aboutus/policies

 

Referencing

 

Please ensure you adhere to the principles of good academic practice and ensure you use the  UWE Harvard system to reference your work. Failure to properly reference your work to original source material can be grounds for the assessment offence of plagiarism and may result in failure of the assessment or have more serious implications.

 

For further guidance on correct referencing go to:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/studyskills/referencing.aspx

 

Details of what constitutes plagiarism and how to avoid it can be found here:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/studyskills/readingandwriting/plagiarism.aspx

 

For general guidance on how to avoid assessment offences see:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/academicadvice/assessments/assessmentoffences.aspx

 

Instructions for submission

You must submit your assignment before the stated deadline by electronic submission through Blackboard. Notification that the electronic submission portal is open for your assignment is displayed (usually two weeks before the submission date) in the Coursework tab in myUWE, the Assignment Coursework tab in Blackboard and via an announcement in the Blackboard course.

 

Please allow enough time to upload your assignment, noting that the system becomes busier and slower as the deadline approaches. Only your final upload will be counted. Ensure all your information is submitted at one attempt to avoid ‘overwriting’ your intended submission. Always check and retain your receipts.

 

Late submission in the 24 hours following the deadline will be accepted but the assignment mark will be capped at 40%. Submissions after 24 hours will not be accepted. For full guidance on online submission through Blackboard, see:

http://info.uwe.ac.uk/online/Blackboard/students/guides/assignments/default.asp

 

Submissions of coursework by any other method (including a paper copy, on disk or by email) are NOT permissible for this module unless specifically agreed in advance of the submission date.

 

Before submitting your work, please ensure that:

  • You have proof read you work thoroughly to ensure your work is presented appropriately
  • You have addressed all the required elements of the assessment
  • You have referenced in accordance with the guidance provided
  • You have addressed each of the marking criterion
  • The submission is in the correct format

 

Safe Assign

Make sure you submit your own work and do not plagiarise from other sources or students.  All modules within FBL have the option to use Safe Assign software.  Safe Assign will compare you work to those of other students (current and past) as well as other materials available on internet.  UWE will act if Safe Assign suggests your work includes material that is ‘copied’ from other sources.

 

 

Final feedback and marks release

Students will normally receive marks and feedback on their submission within 20 working days of the submission deadline (not including any public holidays or closure days).  Any delay in returning students’ work will be communicated by the module leader via Blackboard.  Your individual submission will receive comments on your script and feedback on the marking scheme (see below).

 

Additionally, following the release of marks we offer students’ the opportunity to meet on a 1to1 basis with their first marker to build their understanding of their feedback and marks.

 

 

Personal Circumstances

If you are experiencing difficulties in completing a piece of assessment on time due to unexpected circumstances (for example illness, accident, bereavement), you should seek advice from a Student Support Adviser at the earliest opportunity.

 

Please note the module leader cannot grant personal circumstances or extensions.

 

Appointments with a student adviser can be made via an Information Point or online at:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/academicadvice/studentadvisers.aspx

 

The Student Support Adviser will advise as to whether you should submit an application for ‘Personal Circumstances (PCs)’, how to do so and what evidence is required to support the application.

 

Further details on ECs can be found here:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/academicadvice/assessments/personalcircumstances.aspx

 

a.      The best essays have something to say: the essay as a whole is an argument that shows that you have thought deeply about the issues. Typically, the argument is described early in the essay and then builds throughout the essay with relevant conclusions. A strong argument clearly addresses the purpose of the assignment, has a clear line of thought, and demonstrates sound judgement, critical thinking and is well-reasoned.

b.      Use a wide range of relevant literature and remember to integrate Themes and findings from the literature throughout the assignment – theories should not be in a separate section.

c.       Use the workbook from your first seminar to help you find relevant literature.

d.      Use the guidance from the library drop-in sessions on 2nd and 9th October.

e.      Additional guidance can be found at the following sites:
The Reflective Writing Workbook –  http://academicskills.uwe.ac.uk/general/workbooks/reflective-writing
Critical Thinking and Writing –https://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/studyskills/readingandwriting/criticalthinking.aspx
Communication Skills for International Students –https://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/englishlanguagesupport/communicationskillsworkshops.aspx

Guidance on study skills:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/studyskills.aspx

 

Support from the FBL Academic Success Centre:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/bl/bbs/aboutus/studentexperience/academicsupportcentre.aspx

 

Guidance on UWE assessment regulations and terminology: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/academicadvice/assessments/assessmentsguide.aspx

 

Guidance on using the library:

http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/library/usingthelibrary.aspx

 

f.        Begin your assignment planning as soon as possible and raise any resulting questions at the start of each week’s seminar.  Do not leave the assignment reading and planning until the last minute

 

Suggestions to improve your assignment

Online resources

  Improve structure How to plan and structure your writing
  Adopt a report writing style Report writing
  Be more reflective Reflective writing
  Be more critical / evaluative How to write critically
  Find more relevant references Further research skills / techniques
  Enhance the literature review Literature reviews workbook
  Use UWE Harvard more consistently UWE Bristol Harvard
  Improve written English English language support

 

Workshops for academic skills

Regular academic skills workshops are also available to help with these issues.

Titles include:

– How to make notes and read effectively

– How to plan and structure your writing

– How to put your reading into your writing

– How to get started with critical writing

– How to reference and avoid plagiarism

 

These are bookable through infohub, via the following link:

https://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/studysupport/studyskills/studyskillsevents.aspx

 

Communication Skills for International Students

These workshops are particularly useful if English is not your first language.

 

Titles include:

–         Writing academic English

–         Common grammatical errors

–         Vocabulary for different subject areas

–         Editing your own work

–         Language for discussion

–         Communicating with your lecturers

–         Tenses in academic writing

 

These are bookable through infohub, via the following link:

 

https://info.uwe.ac.uk/events/eventlisting.aspx?categoryID=166