What is an Essay?

An essay is an extended piece of writing that presents and supports a thesis or proposition. The word ‘essay’ derives from the Latin word ‘exagium’, meaning the presentation of a case.

An essay is a piece of writing, usually from an author’s personal point of view. Essays are non-fictional but often subjective; while expository, they can also include narrative. Essays can be literary criticism, political manifestos, learned arguments, observations of daily life, recollections, and reflections of the author.

 

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Sample Assessment Tasks

Relevant GLO

TASK: Write an essay responding to the following questions.

  1. Identify your main personal values and state how they influence your professional decisions and behaviour?
  2. Identify the main things you experience or observe in public life that challenge your values and ideas of how the world should be?
  3. What are the important principles and ethics in professional practice that inform your professional decisions and behaviour? Give an example to demonstrate how this might apply in practice.
  4. In light of the above responses, what do you think ‘professionalism’ means in your professional context?

Alternatively: Add a section to an appropriate essay to include a critical reflection.

“Critically reflect on, discuss and challenge the values intrinsic in the different practices and points of view discussed.”

Sample Rubric Line
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Critically reflect on, discuss and challenge the values intrinsic in the different practices in which they participate.

Identify intrinsic values in your profession. Evaluate the effect of these values on established professional practice.

Uses ethical frameworks to justify impacts in professional practice.

Develops alternate examples of how intrinsic values affect practice.

Identify intrinsic values in your profession. Evaluate the effect of these values on established professional practice.

Uses  ethical frameworks to justify impacts in professional practice.

Provide examples.

Identify intrinsic values in your profession. Explains how these have  impacted on professional practice using ethical frameworks. Identify intrinsic values in your profession. Describe the impact on professional practice using ethical frameworks. Does not identify  intrinsic values in (your profession/topic) or describe the impact on professional practice using ethical frameworks.

 

Relevant GLO

Task: Add Global Citizenship to an Essay (Knowledge / Application)

For all courses and professions, there is theory that frames practice and an opportunity to foster students’ thinking around how their practice fits into the world. This inevitably affords the potential for reflection about their role within that impact.

Consider adding the following to your assessment or tailoring to fit your subject.

“How do you understand the global nature and impact of your chosen profession.  What qualities and behaviours do you need to adopt to work effectively in trans-cultural contexts?

Sample Rubric Line
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Understand the impact of culture and global issues on professional practice

Identifies cultural and global issues that impact upon their profession and its practice.

Analyses how cultural and global issues have impacted on professional practice. Explains how professional practice has evolved to its current state.

Speculate how current global issues will impact professional practice.

Identifies cultural and global issues and analyses the impacted on professional practice. Explains how professional practice has evolved to its current state global issues that impact upon their profession and its practice. Identifies cultural and global issues and describes how it has affected professional practice. Identifies cultural and global issues that impact upon their profession and its practice. Does not identify cultural and global issues that impact upon their profession and its practice.
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Use the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen to work effectively in trans-cultural contexts

Defines the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen.

Examine the differences between cultures to to explain the causes of difficulties when working in trans-cultural contexts.

Develop ideas to work more effectively in trans-cultural contexts.

Defines the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen.

Examine the differences between cultures to to explain the causes of difficulties when working in trans-cultural contexts.

Defines the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen.

Explains how the differences between cultures impacts working effectively trans-culturally.

Defines the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen.

Describes how these allow them to work effectively in a trans-cultural context.

Has not defined the qualities and behaviours of a professional global citizen, or how these allow them to work effectively in a trans-cultural context.

Relevant GLO

Task: Add Sustainable Practices to an Essay (Knowledge / Skill)

For all courses and professions, there is theory that frames practice and an opportunity to foster students’ thinking around how their practice fits into the world. This inevitably affords the potential for reflection about their role within that impact.

Consider adding the following to your assessment or tailoring to fit your subject;

How do you understand the nature of sustainable practices in your chosen profession. What qualities and behaviours do you need to adopt to meet the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations?

Sample Rubric Line
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Demonstrate multidisciplinary knowledge that empowers graduates to understand and critically analyse the challenges of balancing the social, economic and environmental factors essential for ecological sustainability

Describes the issues of balancing social, economic and environmental factors and how they impact on ecological sustainability.

Reflects on current social, economic and environmental factors relevant to their discipline to create ideas of improving the ecological sustainability.

Describes the issues of balancing social, economic and environmental factors and how they impact on ecological sustainability.

Analyse each factor to illustrate how each factor impacts/contributes to ecological sustainability.

Describes the issues of balancing social, economic and environmental factors and how they impact on ecological sustainability

Explain the importance of each factors impact towards ecological sustainability.

Describes the issues of balancing social, economic and environmental factors and how they impact on ecological sustainability Does not describe the issues of balancing social, economic and environmental factors and how they impact on ecological sustainability
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Apply acquired sustainability knowledge individually and collectively for the improvement of local and global environmental sustainability

Define sustainable practices and describe how they can be used in the profession to improve local and global environmental sustainability, as an individual and in your profession.

Evaluates current sustainability knowledge and its effectiveness on local and global environmental sustainability.

Generate ideas on how the current practices might change in the future.

Define sustainable practices and describe how they can be used in the profession to improve local and global environmental sustainability, as an individual and in your profession.

Explain how current sustainability practices have evolved to where they are.

Define sustainable practices and describe how they can be used in the profession to improve local and global environmental sustainability, as an individual and in your profession.

Explain differences between strategies and their effectiveness.

Define sustainable practices and describe how they can be used in the profession to improve local and global environmental sustainability, as an individual and in your profession. Does not define sustainable practices or described how they can be used in the profession to improve local and global environmental sustainability, as an individual or in your profession.

 

Relevant GLO

TASK: Add Sustainable Practices to an Essay (Application)

Students bring fresh insight into work practices common to their chosen profession.  This insight can be extended to consider the impact on social, environmental and economic factors for current and future generations.

Consider adding the following to your assessment.

If the status stays the same as outlined in your essay what are the implications for future generations? What actions can you take in your professional practice to create a sustainable future in this area?

Sample Rubric Line
CRITERION High Distinction  Distinction  Credit  Pass  Fail 
Demonstrate attitudes andimplement actions that meet theneeds of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs and those of the environment.

Describe personal attitudes towards meeting present  needs without compromising future generations ability to meet their needs and the environments.

Evaluate personal attitudes towards sustainability.

Using personal, social and professional attitudes,  generate actions that could assist in ensuring that the needs of the present are met without compromising future generations or the environment.

Describe personal attitudes towards meeting present needs without compromising future generations ability to meet their needs and the environments.

Compare personal attitudes to current social and professional attitudes. Reflect on current personal attitudes to criticize their effectiveness

Describe personal attitudes towards meeting present needs without compromising future generations ability to meet their needs and the environments.

Describe how personal attitudes affect your actions. Explain how these actions will assist future generations.

Describe personal attitudes towards meeting present needs without compromising future generations ability to meet their needs and the environments.

Describe how personal attitudes affect your actions.

Does not describe personal attitudes towards meeting present needs without compromising future generations ability to meet their needs and the environments.

Does not describe how personal attitudes affect your actions.

 Resources

http://studyskills.curtin.edu.au/essays/introduction/what-is-an-essay/

http://www.csu.edu.au/__data/assets/word_doc/0004/2536510/Essay-IKC100.doc

https://teaching.unsw.edu.au/assessing-extended-writing

https://www.ukessays.com/resources/undergraduate/essay/what-is-an-essay.php