SCU Assignment- Critical Essay and Turnitin Reflection

Assessment Description

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The aims of this assignment are as follows:

1. To introduce you to readings in your discipline.

2. To develop an understanding of how to write a critical essay using your critical reading and writing skills.

3. To practice referencing using Harvard Referencing.

4. To become familiar with using Turnitin.


Choose one of the topics in the attached Word document, read the four readings on the topic (i.e. three (3) journal articles and one (1) book chapter), and write a 1000 word critical essay on the topic. The word "critical" does not mean to simply criticise in a negative manner, but rather it is your ability to objectively evaluate the information in these readings in relation to the topic you are asked to argue. This means that you present arguments for and against the topic you have chosen. You must reference the four provided readings, both in-text and at the end, in Harvard Referencing. The word length, excluding your reference list at the end, is 1000 words.

In an essay format, in your introduction include a thesis statement which states your position on the topic. Identify or list the main arguments or ideas to be discussed in the essay in the order in which they will appear. Consider these tips while writing your essay:

  • The critical essay is informative. It is not simply a summary of the content of the readings. In this kind of writing, all claims made about the topic or issue need to be supported with evidence.
  • The difference between your opinion and facts is simple - it does not matter what you believe about the topic or issue; what matters is what you can prove about it, drawing upon evidence found in the readings.
  • Criticism does not mean attacking the readings or the authors; it simply means you are thinking critically about it, exploring it, and discussing your findings.
  • The tone is objective and serious (i.e. Do not use I, we, me, you).
  • Key terms and concepts should be explained or defined.
  • Be specific about the points you are making and back up those points with evidence that is credible and appropriate.
  • It is not necessary to cover all points. Focus your discussion on the major ideas and develop them well.
  • Be sure your discussion is clearly organised. Each paragraph should support the main idea and logically flow. Within each paragraph, sentences should be connected to one another.
  • Ensure your essay is free of mechanical and stylistic errors.
  • Make sure you reference throughout your essay and at the end in a reference list (on a separate page) in alphabetical order using Harvard Referencing. The reference list at the end does not contribute to the word count. 

 Sources:; and


Watch this video about “Critical Essay Writing” – there are very useful tips to assist you in writing your essay:


Once you have completed your final draft of your essay, submit it through Turnitin at least 24 - 48 hours hours before it is due. Then, once your Originality Report has been generated (this can take up to an hour or more if it is your first submission and 24 hours if it is your second or subsequent submission), write a 200 word reflection on your experience of using Turnitin to submit your assessment. Include an interpretation of the score you received and identify any issues in your Originality Report. Explain how you addressed these issues in your assignment. Include your view of the benefits and challenges of usingTurnitin to submit assessments at university. 

This reflection is written on a separate page after your reference list at the end of your essay. Since this is about you reflecting on your experience of using Turnitin, you can use personal pronouns, such as 'I'. However, you still must use correct grammar and punctuation (e.g. do not use contractions, such as 'can't').

You will then re-submit this assessment, with your 200 word reflection, through the correct Turnitin link with an Assessment Cover Sheet BEFORE the due date.



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