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K209 Youth justice: theory, research and practice

TMAs - What are they? TMAs (Tutor Marked Assessments) are essays you will be assessed on over the course. 50 % of your final mark is based on the 5 TMAs you submit to you tutor and 50% on the ECA (End of Course Assignment) The pass mark for each TMA is 40%. Each TMA carries a different weighting for your continual assessment score see the assessment guide for details. The ECA pass mark is also 40%. Different assignments have different word count requirements, so do check before you start each one, and must be within 10% of the allocated words or marks will be deducted. The word count includes just what you have written in the essay itself. It does not include the title, any footnotes or references or the bibliography. Submission of TMA Each TMA must be submitted using the eTMA system and be either a .doc or .rtf file. If you try to submit a different file type, for example, a .docx or a .wtf file, your TMA will be rejected and you will receive an error message. If you are using Word 2007, Open Office, Microsoft Works or any word processing package that does not create a .doc or .rtf file automatically, you MUST use the save as option to save your document as a .doc or .rtf file. TMA 01 should reach your tutor no later than 22 March 2011. You can find out what your TMAs are on and when they are due by clicking into the TMA section of your online course calendar. The deadline for submission is 12 noon on the due day, but a period of grace exists to 12 midnight should you need it. Extension can also be granted in exceptional circumstance. If you feel that you may need extra time please contact me ASAP. And any extension request should be made in writing with reasons and if possible, well in advance of the cut off date Planning and Preparing Identify the cut off date for each TMA as this will help with your planning, then: Read the question at the beginning of the Block and at least a week before submission: Look at the learning outcomes for the TMA these will be used to assess your knowledge and understanding of the given topic when it comes to marking the TMA Utilise the course material and make notes that are relevant to the topic as you complete the exercises. If you have read the question early on, you can ensure that you mark/highlight notes that are particular to the TMA as you go through each block.
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Use your own personal / professional experience where relevant. So for example, if you work in youth justice, say so. And if you do not work in the youth justice system you may well have some transferable experience anyway. Use an essay plan. This will help you to highlight how you are going to address the issues raised from the question Put your essay plan into action. Start your first draft; leave a day; redraft if necessary; leave a day; polish up. Dont forget to run a spell check and if possible get someone to proof read your essay. If this is not possible then it is a good idea to leave the finished essay at least till the next day and then re-read before submitting it. Dont forget to reference your essay and avoid plagiarism Remember to ensure that you do not include any discriminatory language

Structure of TMAs/Essays Each TMA should be set out in 4 parts: Introduction. Set out what your essay will cover to let the reader know how you are going to address the issues raised in the question. You should aim to make this 5% to 10% of word count Main body. Use paragraphs and your own words to interpret the course material. The actual structure will depend on type of question. Write your essay building your arguments as you go, backed up by references and linked to your own experience where relevant. As well as using the essay plan here, before you start this section it is a good idea to remember what you have said in your introduction and write down briefly just what it is you want to say. You should aim to make this at least 80% of the word count. Conclusion. Pull together the key points covered in the body of the essay. This is not the place to add new information! Make it clear that it is a conclusion by starting In conclusion or In summary. You should aim to make this 5% to 10% of word count Bibliography. Dont forget to set out the resources you have used in writing the essay. You shouldnt just include the articles, books etc that youve referred to in the body of your essay, but you should list all the materials you have drawn upon. You should do this using the Harvard referencing system Read the general assignment guide on the course website for more discussion on each of these sections of your essay there are some very good guidelines there. Marking criteria When your tutor comes to marking your essay, he/she does this using 5 criteria: Relevance to the question do not include any irrelevant material. Sometimes you can see a word or phrase with which you are familiar and before you know it you have used up loads of words writing about something you understand but which is not necessarily relevant to the question. So, my advice is stick to the question. Content course material and other relevant material to support your arguments and ideas. This can include your experience. Please do not say I think as it looks as if you have nothing to back stuff up. Use the words in my experience instead, as it shows that you have a basis for your ideas. And do not make any assertions you cannot back up, so writing something like It is a well known fact... or similar is a big no no.
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Depth of treatment - An assignment should apply relevant knowledge and understanding to the question to: critically select (make judgements about the merit based on the discussion of evidence or reasoning) analyse (resolve into component parts) and synthesise (bring the strands of the arguments together to produce an individual response to the question) information Structure analysis and discussion should develop and flow logically. Style communicate arguments, ideas and issues effectively, using styles and language appropriate to the course in conjunction with the provision of references, appropriate subheadings if you wish, paragraphs of a reasonable length (a particular topic for each paragraph), syntax, punctuation and spelling. And finally... If you do need some help or advice, remember the tutor forum is there just for that purpose and if you still want help with something, you can always contact your tutor!! Good luck on the course and enjoy yourself!