Below are some useful questions to ask your instructor.
- Can drafts of the assignment be turned in early for feedback and revisions? (Turn work in early for feedback, even if it isn't complete yet. You will save time and score higher by finishing your assignment right the first time.)
- What types of information sources are acceptable for use on this assignment? (Information sources could include primary sources, secondary sources, peer-reviewed articles, trade journal articles, magazine articles, websites, books, or newspaper articles. Make sure you can identify and understand the differences in these information types.)
- What writing style is expected on this assignment? (A paper could be very formal, like a literature review; more casual and written in first-person, like a reflective paper; or organized in a list format, like an annotated bibliography or research log.)
- Is there a grading rubric available for this assignment? (Rubrics are good for helping you understand how you will be assessed on your assignment, and what the instructor expects for an A grade.)
- Do you have any samples of this assignment from previous students?
- If I have additional questions, what is your preferred method for communication outside of class?
Useful questions to ask yourself:
- Did the instructor provide a list of items to cover in the paper that I can use to develop an outline?
- Did the instructor provide a description of the assignment in a syllabus or handout?
There are a couple more useful questions included on this research plan handout. Use it to keep you on track throughout the WHOLE research process.