For any coursework, but particularly coursework based around an extended essay, you’ll need to perfect your essay-writing abilities.
Coursework is arguably just as challenging as exams, just in different ways – and, given the fact that you have more time, much higher standards are expected of you in coursework than in exams.
Careful planning and research are needed for successful coursework, as well as strong data-gathering and essay-writing skills.
Try not to pick a topic for which the scope is too vast, as you’ll struggle to research it properly and you’re unlikely to do it justice, and it’ll be hard to keep within the word limit.
Ask your teachers for some guidance on choosing your topic if you’re not sure what to write about; they might even tell you a bit about what previous students have done to give you some inspiration.
If there’s something you’ve been working on for the course so far that you’ve particularly enjoyed, you may be able to focus more on this as part of your coursework.
For science coursework, you’ll need to choose something to investigate that you can measure, change and control; it should be what’s called a ‘fair test’, meaning that you have to acknowledge all the controls you use in the experiment and why.Never leave your coursework until the last minute, even if this is your normal approach to essays and it usually works for you.Make sure you understand when the deadlines are, including time for submitting a first draft for comments from your teacher.It’ll look slightly different from an essay plan for science subjects and others that revolve around project work, but the principle is the same: plan out what order you’re going to present your information in.For big projects, this is particularly important, because with a lot of information to convey, you risk being disorganised and waffling.You can base your stages on the next few points in this article – research and data gathering, a structure plan for the piece of work, writing up, and so on.As coursework is primarily a research exercise, the research phase is crucial, so don’t be tempted to skimp on it and go straight to writing up.Follow the links below to find lots more useful advice on writing great essays.When you’re writing up, it’s important to find a place where you can work quietly, without distractions that could cause you to make careless errors.Many students prefer coursework, because it’s a chance to showcase your academic abilities away from the high-pressured environment of the exam room, making it ideal for those who don’t perform to the best of their abilities in exams.However, the time you have available for coursework, in contrast with the time constraints of the exam room, can lull some students into a false sense of security.