Your answer must be a response to the question actually asked; therefore your arguments, illustrations,
examples and sources should be relevant to the question. You should demonstrate the relevance in your
answer. Irrelevant material and discussion of a question or questions not asked will be penalised.
2) Accuracy, grasp of relevant detail, appreciation of the significance and chronology of events and issues
Your essay must include relevant details and must reproduce them accurately. Your use of detail must
demonstrate that you have grasped (understood) it correctly. Your essay should demonstrate that you
appreciate (understand) the significance of relevant events and issues and the chronological order in which
Your essay should be well researched, utilising a range of quality sources.
4) Utilisation of sources, evidence and examples
Your essay should utilise sources, evidence and examples appropriately. They should be employed to
support and illustrate your argument. To do so effectively they must be well chosen in terms of relevance,
authority and quality. The ways in which they support your argument need to be made clear.
5) Coherence and quality of the logic and argument
Your argument must be logical (adhere to the principles of reasoning) and coherent (fit together naturally and
in a way that readers can follow). In other words your argument must make sense with conclusions flowing
justifiably from premises. You must be able to justify your views.
6) Original thought and critical thinking
You should strive to think things through for yourself and come up with original ideas if you can. Essays
containing original ideas will generally receive some reward, depending on the quality. You should
demonstrate the application of critical thinking to the ideas you encounter. This does not necessarily mean
that you should disagree with them (you may or may not as you see fit). It means you should assess them,
looking for their strengths and weaknesses.
7) Adherence to scholarly conventions
You must comply with scholarly conventions. This means avoiding plagiarism, including the “cut and paste”
variety. It also means you should correctly and diligently report your sources both in footnotes or in-text
referencing and bibliography, and use quotation marks where appropriate. Essays that are poorly referenced
or which in other ways are deficient in adhering to scholarly conventions will be penalised.
8) Use of own words
Using your own words demonstrates that you have genuinely processed the ideas you are using rather than
simply collecting the words and ideas of other scholars. In other words, using your own words helps to make
the work your own.