Homework: definition, outline and examples | Learn smarter (2023)



What is homework? Definition and Guidelines

If you're just starting out at university and have already been slammed by that awful word, welcome to this new level of study! University isn't just about cramming tons of books: it should ideally also encourage critical thinking, teach you how to argue your arguments effectively, and help you develop research skills. And you need all three of them to write an outstanding term paper!

But wait a minute, what is a term paper? A term paper is a longer type of research-based term paper on a specific topic. Papers range from 15 to 25 pages because less is considered lazy and more is too much for any professor (believe me I teach at a university).

In general, you should be free to choose a topic for your term paper, but regardless of whether it is free or assigned to you, term papers usually have the same goal. They test your ability to formulate and support your arguments and to position yourself within a certain theoretical framework. Still sound scary? Do not worry! I'm here to shed light on some of the more vague aspects of term paper writing.

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Structuring the structure of the housework (+ PDF sample structure of the housework)

Before you start writing, it's a good idea to have an idea of ​​where exactly you want your writing to go. The best way to do this is to write an outline, or (as we sleep-deprived academics like to call it) a summary. An abstract is a brief description of your work/article/project that outlines your main research questions and the theoretical framework you will be working with.

I generally suggest that people start with a very simple pyramid structure when writing an abstract:

  1. The basis.This is where you bring in a broad, general statement on the topic of your choice. You can clarify and specify this in a few more sentences to make it easier for your readers to get started with the research project.

Example: Contemporary drama boasts the power to transform audiences through careful selection and skillful presentation of impactful imagery. By creating a false reality, the drama sometimes appeals to the affective side of the audience to comment on a range of social and psychological issues. Duncan MacmillansAny brilliant thingharnesses its affect-triggering potential and tackles the problem of suicidal depression.

  1. The middle.In this part of the outline you formulate the goals of your studies. Some of my favorite phrases to signal your intentions are: this paper aims to shed light, the goal of this research paper is, the idea behind this paper is, etc. Feel free to add some powerful action verbs, e.g. B. examine, evaluate, illuminate, distinguish, analyze, cross-reference, etc. to highlight your ideas.

Example: This paper aims to explore how the play creates a more realistic setting by deviating from audience expectations, thus blurring the line between drama and real life. It can be argued that the simulated reality, illustrated through a series of exaggerations, influences the affective component in audience attitudinal formation and that its neglect of the cognitive amplifies the transformative power ofAny brilliant thing.

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  1. The summit.The last part of your outline should highlight coherent hypotheses or research questions that your study will answer. While scientific work usually dreams of some originality, this shouldn't worry you just yet - you don't have to invent hot water in your term papers, but new conclusions will be easier to draw as you gain experience.

Example: This paper concludes by examining how the play's structure simulates depression in order to raise awareness among the audience and to what extent it achieves its goal of conveying the message of universality and the impact of the disease.

Writing an outline is a great way to organize your thoughts, figure out what kind of books you need, and anticipate your findings.

In the above examples, the books you need would have to be related to theatre, psychological influences and reality simulations.

This process applies to every topic. The outline can be more detailed but does not have to be more than 300 words. A piece of advice: If you can't sum up the key points of your topic in 300 words, you should do a little brainstorming until you have reached the concrete goal.

PS check outthis excellent example of an outline of a term paper!

Research can be that easy!

If you know your basics, you'll be doing more research much faster. With our study sets, created by certified teachers, you will speed up your studies and remember the important things. Any research you do after that will be easy because you've already covered the basics!

(Video) How to format your paper in APA style in 2023

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Seminar work format – The safety net

Any term paper should follow a relatively familiar structure and mode of reasoning. Let's start with the basics:

  • front page.This is where your title goes (centered, bold, ideally pt24). Your personal information should also be listed on the cover sheet, such as name, address, e-mail, matriculation number, telephone number (possibly) and the institution and department for which you are writing your thesis. Each university typically has its own cover page layout, but a general rule of thumb is that the institutional information is above the title, while the personal information is below.
  • Table of contents– Your readers need to know what to expect!
  • Introduction.This is a more detailed version of your project outline. You should state what the work is about, what theoretical framework you use and what your hypothesis is. My pro tip is to write the introduction last, as term papers tend to grow as you write and you may end up with very different results than expected.
  • The body of the paper.Exciting things are happening here! Their case studies, experiments and results should be thoroughly examined and described. Common parts of the body of the work include:
    • theoretical framework.Explain what theories or ideas you are using.
    • Methodology.This is mostly found in scientific papers where you need to explain what methods are guiding your study (i.e. experiments).
    • Analyse.Close readings, experiments, data collection - whatever your project does, it should do it here.
    • discussion. Feel free to start interpreting your results in this section. A great paper doesn't just list data - it compares and contrasts. You must be able to draw conclusions from what your analysis has shown you. results as expected? hypothesis confirmed. Results not optimal? There is something to write. Think about why things went differently and what that means for future studies.
    • Optional: gotchas and future improvements.Again, this is more present in science than humanities, but you could address any potential pitfalls or blind spots in your study and suggest how they can be improved in the future. You can also talk about what research directions your project can inspire.
  • Diploma. It's time to finish everything. Briefly summarize the main points of the research and the main results. If you have not already dedicated a section of your work to this, you can also write notes for future research in your conclusion.

Example of the structure of a term paper

To give you a more accurate homework example, here is a more detailed structure of the theater-themed example above.

Homework: definition, outline and examples | Learn smarter (1)

Still unsureHowwrite a term paper?

Excellent, I love good questions! The truth is that writing a term paper is a labor of love (it's hard work, especially when you're carrying all the books!), so I'll give you some tips on how to make it an enjoyable experience.

  1. Choose a topic that interests you.There's nothing you can do to convince me that your topic is so utterly uninteresting that you just can't find such a topic. You just haven't done your job yet. Start digging and follow the internet clicking chasms until you come across something that catches your attention. My master's thesis idea was based on a single line I read about Neil Gaimans in a magazineAmerican gods– I managed to turn it into 80 pages, two scientific articles and two lectures, although it may not have been researched beforehand. So what you write about has to have a funny angle.
  2. start reading.You can't write a term paper out of nothing. Once you have a general theme and outline, you should start gathering your materials. Stop by your library and find out about interlibrary loan. Familiarize yourself with various academic databases such as JSTOR and ResearchGate - your university likely has extensive access to many knowledge bases that you can access via an official VPN or library computer. Search for keywords and titles and save anything that sounds interesting. Learn to identify important elements and ideas in these texts, and be prepared to use them to support your arguments.
  3. Also know when to stop.Sometimes you're excited to learn something new, but eventually you realize you're ready to put what you've found into your own words. Set up an experiment, survey, or study and track the results. In the humanities, this can mean a more detailed analysis of selected texts. This is where you start writing – here, too, you leave the introduction for later and jump straight to the core of the work.
  4. Pay attention to the style.When writing a term paper, you must adhere to certain standards. Term papers are written in an academic style and involve a lot of passive voice, enlightening verbs (represent, examine, evaluate) and words that mark cause-and-effect relationships. Don't be afraid to use transitional words to help your text and conclusions flow easily.
  5. Quote correctly!Oh how I hated learning all the citation styles when I was just starting out but once you learn the basics it gets easier. It's a bit of a grind, but my advice is to meticulously jot down your sources as you proceed. Whenever you quote someone, be sure to include the full citation at the end of the text (I like to have it in a separate document), and don't forget the in-text citations. Different citation styles (such as MLA, Chicago, APA) are available depending on what field you are studying in - check the requirements for each course and consult the relevant websites for guidelines.
  6. Don't plagiarize!Any work you submit will be subject to plagiarism checking, and you won't have much fun explaining why you didn't properly cite sources. Intellectual property theft is a crime like any other and can get you removed from the course or even prosecuted. When paraphrasing, you must still cite the original creator. Don't think your professors are stupid, they've been in this business a long time and can tell when something isn't coming from their students. Also, they usually have a good idea of ​​each student's skills, writing styles, and ideas well in advance of handing in the work - don't let them question the authenticity of your writing.

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Don't forget to do homework!

And there goes last-minute fluffing of text and hitting send before swooning for the next two days. Writing a term paper at the university should not be postponed at the last minute. If you're a chronic procrastinator, it's time to learn thisorganize your timeand devote enough of it to your tasks.

When you're done writing, you should leave your paper alone—sleep on it, as the saying goes—for a few days. You can treat this distance well like any otherstudy break– It will help you clear your mind, avoid resentment towards the subject and allow you to see it with new eyes. Before submitting, review your text carefully and revise the text by eliminating spelling and grammatical errors and trimming unnecessary examples or repetitive statements. A good way to do this is to change the font or even the font size in your writing software - this stimulates your perception and makes it easier to spot mistakes.

When editing, you should also consider how your arguments hold together and whether you need to add or replace text and/or rearrange your points. It's an extremely important part of the writing process, but you shouldn't overdo it either.perfectionismcan get you into the editing spiral that usually leads to screwing up parts that were originally good. A few repetitions are fine, but as you read more you might as well start rewriting the whole thing.

The last question to consider is whether you are happy with your result. Remember this is a term paper and you are still learning so no one expects it to be perfect but you should be happy with what you have achieved.

The most important findings for writing a term paper

Writing a term paper is a longer commitment than a simple essay. To ensure your success, start on time, otherwise you might be in a rushstressed.

  • Try to find a topic that interests you personally.
  • Scribble an outline to indicate your angle or the general direction of the paper.
  • Read enough materials. Your library and online databases are your friends.
  • Form hypotheses and set up experiments or analyses.
  • Get down to business (andstop hesitating!).
  • Don't forget to edit the paper well and format it properly.

Much luck!

Quelle: Danica Stojanovic, „Theatrical (Hyper)Reality: The Effects of Breaking Formal Boundaries inAny brilliant thing“, Over The Horizon, London, 2020, S. 81-100.


Where can I get homework answers? ›

The 5 Best Homework Help Websites
  • Best Free Homework Help Site: Khan Academy.
  • Best Paid Homework Help Site: Chegg.
  • Best Site for Math Homework Help: Photomath.
  • Best Site for English Homework Help: Princeton Review Academic Tutoring.
  • Best Site for STEM Homework Help: Studypool.
May 20, 2022

Does homework actually make you smarter? ›

It appears middle- and high schoolers have much to gain academically by doing their homework. The average high school student doing homework outperformed 69% of the students in a class with no homework. Homework in middle school was half as effective.

What is the true meaning of homework? ›

Homework is a set of tasks assigned to students by their teachers to be completed outside the classroom.

Who invented homework 😡? ›

Homework is typically credited to Roberto Nevelis of Venice, Italy, who invented it in 1095—or 1905, depending on your sources.

What app has all homework answers? ›

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Is there an app that answers homework? ›

Slader - Homework Answers

This app helps with your homework offers millions of free step-by-step solutions to all the questions in the most popular textbooks in middle school, high school, and college.

Why homework is important? ›

Develops crucial study skills

Another importance of homework is that students develop various necessary skills that they will carry with them throughout their academic and professional life, from time management and organisation to self-motivation and independent learning.

Is homework a good way to learn? ›

Homework has an impact by enabling pupils to undertake independent learning to practice and consolidate skills, conduct in-depth inquiry, prepare for lessons or revise for exams.

What are the benefits of homework? ›

Homework teaches students how to problem solve. Homework gives student another opportunity to review class material. Homework gives parents a chance to see what is being learned in school. Homework teaches students how to take responsibility for their part in the educational process.

How does homework impact students? ›

The researchers found that excessive homework means students are not able to meet their developmental needs or cultivate other critical life skills at the same time. In other words, students are more likely to give up extracurricular activities, spend less time with friends and family, and stop pursuing their hobbies.

What does homework mean in school? ›

DEFINITION. Homework is the time students spend outside the classroom in assigned activities to practice, reinforce or apply newly-acquired skills and knowledge and to learn necessary skills of independent study.

How does homework teach life skills? ›

Homework is beneficial because it helps students develop vital skills that they will use throughout their lives, especially self-regulation. Kids must manage distractions, manage their time, delay gratification, and set goals when they do homework—all of these skills are incredibly important for success in life.

What is an interesting fact about homework? ›

Homework Causes Stress

A study by Stanford University found that 56% of students see homework as their primary source of stress. Many students develop somatic symptoms, mainly headaches, when they get too much homework to do. They feel pressured by their teachers and parents to do this homework.

Should homework be required? ›

According to Duke professor Harris Cooper, it's important that students have homework. His meta-analysis of homework studies showed a correlation between completing homework and academic success, at least in older grades.

Why shouldn't teachers give out homework? ›

Homework leaves less time for children to be children. Kids need to get outside and play more often so they can grow and develop, but homework is holding them back from this. Homework also takes time away from sleep hours for children, which in turn increases the productivity of their next school day lesson.

What website gives you answers to homework free? ›

Chegg. Chegg Study, also known as Cramster, provides students with homework help through offering solutions for your textbook and homework problems. The site also provides expert Q&A sessions and 30 minutes of free tutoring online.

Who created homework? ›

Roberto Nevelis of Venice, Italy, is often credited with having invented homework in 1095—or 1905, depending on your sources.

How can I skip homework? ›

Tell your parents you're going to the library or a friend's house to study. Leave the house with your backpack and text books. If you do go to a friend's house, play video games or just hang out the whole time. You can also go hang out at the mall or somewhere else, but be aware your parents could catch you!

Does Google have a homework helper? ›

What's It About? SOCRATIC BY GOOGLE is a homework-help app and platform that gives students answers to and complete explanations for almost any problems you can throw at it.

Is there a machine that can do your homework? ›

With more than 8GB of storage space, Homework Helper records audio and video, takes notes and will even do your homework for you. The best part? Homework Helper has already been approved by the Teachers Society of America. So you can put it to work immediately.

What are 3 benefits of homework? ›

  • Pro 1. Homework improves student achievement. ...
  • Pro 2. Homework helps to reinforce classroom learning, while developing good study habits and life skills. ...
  • Pro 3. Homework allows parents to be involved with children's learning.
Feb 25, 2022

Why is homework good for your brain? ›

Develops Your Memory and Critical Thinking

One can develop a better memory and incorporate new skills with repetition. Homework is based on classwork and focuses on integrating the new skill through its practice. This helps in boosting memory and retaining the acquired knowledge for exams and future tests.

Does homework have any value? ›

Homework allows students to revise classroom learnings and builds the habit of self-study. This helps them to score better. Increases concentration: While doing homework, students find an isolated place to study where they can concentrate more.

Does homework make students learn more? ›

Homework helps students develop good study habits and life skills. Being responsible for completing at-home assignments helps students practice organization, time management, following directions, critical thinking and independent problem-solving.

How important is homework to student success? ›

Homework is important because it helps students to learn new and advanced skills. It promotes self-study, research and time management skills within students. It also builds their confidence in tackling problems independently without constant help from teachers and parents.

Is homework good for Mental Health? ›

According to a study by Stanford, “students in high-achieving communities who spend too much time on homework experience more stress, physical health problems, a lack of balance and even alienation from society.” Teenagers shouldn't be under so much stress that they suffer physical and mental health problems, ...

Why is it called homework? ›

In 1905, an Italian teacher named Roberto Nevilis invented the concept of “homework.” Originally, its purpose was to be used as a punishment for students who were lazy in class or for those who were disobedient or rude to their teacher. This practice became popular and became more frequently used around the world.

What is opinion about homework? ›

"Homework is a vital aspect of the education of all children. It reinforces skills and knowledge that have been part of daily instruction. It allows parents and teachers to work in a collaborative way, the parents providing encouragement for students to complete their assignments.

Why is homework a problem? ›

Consequences for high school students

In 2013, research conducted at Stanford University found that students in high-achieving communities who spend too much time on homework experience more stress, physical health problems, a lack of balance in their lives, and alienation from society.

Should students do homework everyday? ›

Homework Encourages A Sedentary Lifestyle

While classroom time is important, playground time is just as important. If children are given too much homework, they won't have enough playtime, which can impact their social development and learning.

How does less homework benefit students? ›

By assigning less homework, you'll likely find that students will love learning, get more sleep, enjoy themselves more with outside activities, be less overworked, and have more time to spend with family.

Why is less homework better for students? ›

By reducing homework, students have proven to get more sleep which can lead to better physical and mental health. By reducing homework it allows for students to create a more balanced life at home. By reducing the homework load, students have proven to be more encouraged to learn.

Why should homework be stopped? ›

Homework in elementary school has not been shown to lead to better achievement in school. And too much homework in the higher grades can lead to worsening grades and increased mental and physical issues. So it's important to be mindful of how much time your child is spending on it each day.

Where can I get free answers? ›

  • Answers.com. User-powered question and answer platform. ...
  • Ask a Librarian. Online reference desk service from the Library of Congress. ...
  • Brainly. Post questions to a community of millions of students and teachers. ...
  • Chegg Study. ...
  • Dummies. ...
  • eHow. ...
  • PolitiFact. ...
  • Quora.

What is a website that gives you answers? ›

Yahoo! Answers lets users ask questions and receive answers from fellow users. Topics include arts and the humanities, science, and mathematics, and education and reference. Users who provide answers receive points based on their responses. Almost all questions receive a quick answer.

Is there a website that can do my homework? ›


EduBirdie is one of the leading companies in the academic writing niche. It can help when you ask "I need help with my math homework" or readily assist when you're seeking chemistry, physics or finance homework help.

Where is the best place to get homework done? ›

Our 6 Best Places to Study That AREN'T the Library
  • A Park. Similar to a coffee shop, the park can offer a sense of community and is a great place to seek inspiration. ...
  • A friend's house. Let's make coworking more personal! ...
  • An empty classroom. ...
  • In nature. ...
  • A bookstore.
Mar 14, 2022

What is the fastest way to get answers? ›

  1. Read the whole answer only to understand.
  2. Don't think of memorizing in one go.
  3. Break the question in parts( as many u wish.. ...
  4. Now go through one part and learn it loudly.
  5. Now check whether u have learned by hiding the answer.
  6. If yes: repeat processes 4 and 5 till u complete the answer.

What app Can I ask questions and get answers to? ›

ASKfm is the #1 Q&A social network that helps you to learn more about your friends, classmates, and people around. Follow your friends and discover their secrets anonymously. Just ask them! ANONYMITY: discover the secrets of your friends, classmates, and people nearby.

Which app is best for question and answer? ›

Quora Ask Questions Get Answers
  • 4.3.
  • Free.

Where can I ask a question for free? ›

Where can I ask a question on the Internet?
  • Answerbag. Answerbag is a website that helps answer questions in almost all types of different categories. ...
  • Answers.com. ...
  • Ask Me Help Desk. ...
  • Ask MetaFilter. ...
  • Avvo. ...
  • Blurtit. ...
  • Brainly. ...
  • Brilliant.org.
Apr 12, 2021

Where can I find Google answers? ›

  • On your Android phone or tablet, open Google.
  • Search for a place or city.
  • Scroll down to the "Questions & answers" section.
  • Tap See questions.
  • Under the question, tap Answer.

What is homework planner? ›

The Homework Planner provides students with quick and easy access to their homework online. Students can log in and view the details of any homeworks that have been set for them on the planner by their teachers - including the due date.

Can I pay someone to do my school work? ›

Yes. You can pay someone to do your homework, just like you'd pay a tutor. However, it's hard to find someone who is good at doing your homework assignments. You can try Craigslist or find someone locally, but there's not a ton and they might not be actual experts in your subject.

Does Google have a homework app? ›

Assignments is an application for your learning management system (LMS). It helps educators save time grading and guides students to turn in their best work with originality reports — all through the collaborative power of Google Workspace for Education.

What type of homework is most effective? ›

The majority of both groups of students and teachers agreed that revision was the most effective type of homework.

Is homework worth the time? ›

The most comprehensive research on homework to date comes from a 2006 meta-analysis by Duke University psychology professor Harris Cooper, who found evidence of a positive correlation between homework and student achievement, meaning students who did homework performed better in school.

Is it worth it to do homework? ›

Homework improves student achievement.

Studies have shown that homework improved student achievement in terms of improved grades, test results, and the likelihood to attend college. Research published in the High School Journal indicated…


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