Putting it together

Writing the introduction • Writing the conclusion • Reviewing your work: redrafting and editing • Editing for the reader • Reviewing your work: what are you looking for? • Reorganizing your work: an example

What am I supposed to do about the introduction and conclusion?

I don't need to know what you are going to say.

Do tell your reader what you are going to say.

I never really read my work through.

In this chapter we come to the final stages of preparing your assignment, when you have it nearly complete but not quite ready: the stage when you need to make sure that it will be well presented. We do want to emphasize that this is a very important and also a time-consuming stage in writing an assignment. Students who are not very used to writing course assignments sometimes find this surprising. It is easy to assume that by the time the whole assignment is written, often after considerable effort, the only thing left is to hand it in to the tutor with a sigh of relief. This is a mistake! Tutors are quite shocked to find out that sometimes their students haven't read over their work before handing it in. Once the piece of writing is complete you do need to review it as a whole to make sure that it is as good as you can make it. This might need to be done more than once for different purposes - for example, for checking if it 'fits together', for changing the wording or the order, for cutting redundant or repetitive parts, or for eliminating small errors. Before this, we need to consider the introduction and the conclusion.

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