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15 - Density of evidence.

How many pieces of evidence will give you a great mark?

Add in more facts and figures

How to make your report ‘heavy weight’

How dense is your writing?

No, we are not asking how “stupid” is your writing (that is the wrong sort of “dense” 😉 ). Here we are using the meaning of density as “the number of items” per unit area. For your writing you could interpret this as something like “the number of pieces of evidence per 100 words.”

A good analogy is a sporting match like football. At your brother’s under 15 football match the crowd is likely to not be very dense. There will be some parents and some siblings (who would probably rather not be there 😉 ) around the football pitch. However at the final of the national football competition’s season the same size pitch will have maybe 100,000 people around it. This is obviously a very dense crowd.

So, thinking about your report or essay; your teacher is looking for a certain density of evidence. For example, if you are asked to give the key environmental issues concerning koalas you need to work out how many different issues you should give. How many is enough? How many will get a great mark? Have you included enough detail?

You could write 200 words on 1 environmental issue or you could write 200 words covering up to, say, 8 environmental issues. You need to work out how many will get you a great mark.

In reports and essays we generally like to see more examples rather than less. This means the writing is denser as there is more evidence per 100 words. You have not just answered that section, but have answered it well.

This density technique also applies to the number of theories used in your analysis. As discussed in the section “The Theory and the Analysis” there are often a lot of theories or models taught in the class. In your assignment you will be expected to use these to do your analysis. So, in 500 words of your writing you may use 2 of the models or you may be able to use 6. This more dense writing will generally get better marks.

Exceeding expectations – “Just a Little Bit more”.

In marketing we use the technique of “Exceeding Expectations.” If a customer needs something from you, you could give them more than they were expecting. In certain situations this will make a very big impression on them and will help ensure that they come back to you.

It can be difficult to know how dense to make each section of your assignment. If you are after a great mark you can use the technique “Just a little more for good measure.” This means if you have given one example to explain something, you could add another example just to make sure.

If you are unsure about how much density is needed for a great mark, ask your teacher.



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