Dos and Don’ts of University Assignments

With the third and final term of the year just begun, no matter which year of university you are in, you can see exams looming. While only slightly helpful, I hope this list might at least tweak a smile onto your face during these stressful months.


Dos and Don’ts of Written Assignments:

  1. DO read the assignment brief and look at the learning outcomes.
  2. DO turn up to lectures. “I’m sorry I couldn’t come in earlier, my hamster got hit by a guitar” – is not an acceptable excuse. (Or just go to ‘spoons and look at the lecture notes, but prepare for a bad grade.)
  3. DON’T leave it until the last minute, even though everyone does. (Unless the assignment is worth less than 5% of your grade, in which case the law dictates that it is irrelevant and may only be attempted hungover, at 3am, two days before the assignment is due.) [This comment not sanctioned by your editor – Ed]
  4. DON’T repeat yourself.
  5. DO be selective with your housemates. If a metal-head is awake, so are you. (Specifically a metal-head with an online gaming addiction.)
  6. DON’T use Wikipedia. (See also
  7. FOR THE THOUSANDTH AND FIRST TIME, ACM uses Harvard Referencing. (
  8. DON’T repeat yourself.
  9. DO use words that make you sound smart: furthermore, nevertheless, etc (but not if you don’t actually understand them because this will make you look dumb).
  10. Strawberry blonde NOT ginger.
  11. Whatever the brief of your assignment is, REMEMBER McNally loves Norway! (And maybe mention Beatrice.)
  12. DO have a strong internet connection. (Or if you don’t, steal someone else’s.) [Comment not sanctioned by editor – Ed]
  13. Before submission DO Google “what happens if I drop out of uni” and/or “how to fluke a 2,2”.
  14. DON’T repeat yourself.
  15. For 50% off Domino’s orders, use the code UNION123.
  16. If the assignment is worth more than 5% of your grade, DO make it known to the world that it is VERY IMPORTANT and THE HARDEST ASSIGNMENT EVER. (Especially to your one friend doing neuroscience at Oxbridge.) You must then moan to everyone that it has taken you days. (You don’t need to mention that you were only studying for 2 or 3 hours of those days.).

Every time you go into an assessment not wearing your lanyard, somewhere in the world a Sue dies

office meme 2

Dos and Don’ts of Practical Assignments: 

  1. DO sleep the night before and eat something nutritious. Instant noodles is not a meal.
  2. If you’re allowed to pick your own repertoire, DON’T pick Coldplay. As a rule, ACM tutors all hate Coldplay.
  3. If you want to have fun, DON’T come prepared; if you want a good mark, DO.
  4. Caffeine is your best friend and your worst enemy. If you’re a vocalist DO NOT drink coffee, it will make you sound like a strangled cat. (Unless that’s what you’re going for.)
  5. DO bring spare strings, picks and drumsticks. The one time you don’t is the one time they won’t be available. 
  6. DO make sure the bass player has a electric dog collar.
  7. Every time you go into an assessment not wearing your lanyard, somewhere in the world a Sue dies.
  8. If you get a bad grade, DON’T go through official channels, just put up a really bitchy Facebook post about it.  [Comment not sanctioned by editor – Ed]

Good luck with your assignments! Here’s some music to help you through:

lofi hip hop radio – beats to relax/study to

spotify office playlist

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