Types of Assignments and Assessments

As I am currently in the midst of a very busy period planning and writing assignments, I thought I’d center this particular blog on the different types of assignments that you will encounter when you’re at University.


The main form of assessment that is used by my psychology course (and many other courses for that matter) are essays. An essay is one way to show the tutors on your course you have understood a topic that has been covered in the lectures/seminars by answering a set question (although this is not always the case) using your own knowledge backed up by evidence. Either from books or journal articles. Word counts for these range from 1000 words and upwards (+/- 10% of the set word count)

Lab Reports

All science based courses, such as mine will involve you carrying out a piece of research and then writing up your findings in the form of a lab report. All lab reports on my course have to be in the format set out by the APA (American Psychological Association) and differ in their sections depending on what type of research you have carried out: qualitative or quantitative.


Presentations usually involve you teaming up with other people on your course/in your seminar group to present something. Whether it be a poster you’ve created about a piece of famous research or a PowerPoint presentation about what you’ve learnt in your lectures.

Book Reviews

When I was in my first year one of my assignments in the second semester was to read and review a book from a list provided to us. I chose to review Oliver Sack’s book “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat”. I found the book to be a fascinating read and I had to summarize each chapter in a 100 words or so.


A portfolio is essentially a collection of work and on my course one of the assignments I’m currently working on, is a 3000 portfolio which outlines my proposal for an anti-obesity poster/advertising campaign. This is based on how I’d apply psychological theory to help fight this growing health epidemic.

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