Course Requirements

[Tom Gauld and Simone Lia: The Writer at Work (2002)]


All the work you hand in should adhere to the following guidelines:
  • Reasonably sized and spaced text: not in an unusual or hard-to-read font.
  • In a file format readable by turnitin, the online plagiarism detection software: this excludes the use of pdfs or word processing programmes other than MSWord or (at a pinch) rtf: Rich Text Format.


You will be graded not on the quality of the experience or feelings you describe in your writing (whether poetry or prose), but on:
  • how well it meets the assignment requirements
  • how effective it is as a piece of writing
  • the clarity with which you communicate the ideas lying behind your work
Presentation and grammar are also very important. Hastily thrown-together, sloppily formatted work is unlikely to achieve a good grade.

Grading of creative work can be particularly sensitive. If you disagree with a mark, we suggest that you wait for a few days before talking to us about it. Give yourself that much time to reread and reflect on the grade and the comments. If you still have a query or complaint after that, you should consult your tutor first of all. If you are still dissatisfied, you may contact me.

Late Assignments

All work is due in on the dates given in the Course Timetable.

All assignments should be submitted online through the course Stream site. However, you can (if you need to include original documents or pictures) also submit a hardcopy through the assignment slot in Atrium level 2 – or to your tutor in the Workshop.

Late work, without an extension, will incur a penalty of two percentage marks per day.

If it is more than one week late (without prior arrangement), it can still be graded, but will receive no comments.


If you want an extension, you must ask for one from your tutor. They will be given sparingly, in cases of bereavement, illness, or family crisis. You will be asked to provide medical certificates for illness.

You must ask for the extension before the assignment is due.

E-mail Communication

E-mail should be used only:
  • to request an extension on an assignment.
    NB: This may or may not be granted. You are not guaranteed a favourable response.

  • to explain an absence from class.
    NB:You must provide a medical certificate if it is health-related. If you fail to provide a satisfactory excuse, it will continue to be counted against you as an unexplained absence.


We take plagiarism extremely seriously. If you take all or part of someone else’s work without acknowledgement and present it as your own, you can expect to receive – at the very least – a zero grade for that assignment.

Depending on the seriousness of the offence, you may also face failure in the course as a whole.

If in doubt, ask. Not only your words, but also the plots and ideas you employ must be your own unaided work.

NB: You can access further information about Massey University’s Plagiarism policy here

[The Poet's Loft (Marin County)]

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