The Theory & the Analysis.

In the technique "Mapping out the Subject" we discussed the importance of understanding which of the theories apply to particular senarios. We have also discussed how, when doing an assignment, students are practicing and being tested on two things:

1. Their understanding of the theories, models and frameworks taught in the subject.

2. Their ability to use these to analyse a situation and provide an answer.

These are 2 different things. Students often make one of two types of mistake:

a. Some students spend most of their time just writing about a model when something like half the marks will be given for the use of the model.

b. Other students try to answer the question without using the appropriate model from class. Again this will lose maybe half the marks.

To get great marks students need to do both well. They need to think through the list of theories and models that have been taught in class and then use the appropriate ones in their report or essay.

It may seem like “Overkill”.

Because students are doing the essay or report for a university or college, they need to use the theoretical models more than we would in the workplace. As you know, when we become more experienced in our trade or profession we work out which models we prefer to use. New theories and models will also come along, or we may develop our own.

While we are studying though, we need to use those that are taught. We need to use a lot of them and we need to use them to what may seem to be an excessive amount.

It is also important to not just use the theories in isolation. The students that get the best marks are those that “show the links" between the different models used. They show how the different frameworks can be used together in some way to fully analyze and explain a situation.

I recommend that if students are unclear about any of the models or frameworks, they should discuss this with their teacher.