Making sure you meet the assignment’s requirements College Life

Hello everyone:

Have you ever worked on an assignment, only to discover at the last minute that you did the wrong assignment? Maybe you wrote a wonderful treatise on the role of tiddly winks in today’s culture. Perhaps you waxed eloquently on the job of belly button lint in the overall scheme of life. Perchance you discussed Shakespeare’s wife’s personality as it related to his writing in a Midsummer’s Night’s Dream.

Then, just as you got ready to hit the “submit” button, you realized it was the wrong assignment. What do you do now? Go ahead and submit the document, hoping against hope that the instructor will not notice????? Bad news, folks, unless we have just been hit by a tidal wave, we will notice that you wrote the wrong document.

I actually had this happen to me once (I wrote the wrong assignment, not that I got hit by a tidal wave!). What did I do? I went back and looked over the instructions and then I took a deep breath and re-wrote my essay so that it fit into what was required. Fortunately, I always prepared my essays with enough time for one more look-see, so I had 24 hours to fix it. It worked about just fine, though I did do some major league scrambling!

Sometimes students write a discussion board posting that does not meet the requirements of the forum. For example, my writing classes  always have to post two five-sentence paragraphs on every single discussion board for the entire semester. This is a MINIMUM requirement that is mentioned in the syllabus and in the individual discussion board instructions. Just today, I had a student who posted two replies: a three-sentence and a five-sentence posting. Does she think I don’t care or that I won’t notice? Hint: I do notice and she got very low grades on those discussion boards.

So, the point here is to always, always look over the instructions more than once and to write the correct document. Do you have any special times when you messed up? What was your solution to the problem? I look forward to hearing from you!


Dr. Sheri


Sheri Dean Parmelee has a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from Regent University. She writes books on practical tips for people who become unexpectedly unmarried and is working on her second novel in a series of contemporary romance/suspense novels. She teaches at three colleges, working with students from freshmen to graduate students. Her hobbies include running 8 miles a day and reading biographies and fiction.

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