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To expect my tutors to be consistent?

(15 Posts)
The5DayChicken Fri 24-Jul-15 23:54:24

I'm doing a college course at the moment and it's split across 3 tutors.

While I was under the first tutor, my referencing was criticised and I was marked down. This tutor advised me to reference everything I look at in order to understand the topic, not only things I actually refer to in my work. By the time I submitted my last module to her, she was very happy with my referencing.

The second tutor then marked me down on referencing too. She said the format was (slightly) wrong. Again, I adjusted and it stopped being an issue.

I've now started with my last tutor. I've been marked down yet again. This one says I'm not referencing properly within text and my website referencing is all wrong. He also seems to expect me to add references within text in instances where I'm outlining short definitions that I've not needed to look elsewhere for and am not talking about a specific body of work.

All three of these tutors stated that they expect Harvard referencing yet all expect different things. I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick bleeding wall! AIBU to expect all tutors in the same college to have the same expectations of Harvard referencing?

The5DayChicken Sat 25-Jul-15 00:23:19

I realised how boring a read this was right after I posted it grin . Still feel slightly better after a little rant though.

echt Sat 25-Jul-15 00:55:02

Not boring at all, and yes, the expectations of the college should be the same for all tutors. My DD's uni had a bootcamp at the start of the semester, where the referencing rules were laid down.

Having said that, if the tutors interpret the rules differently, then you have a real problem. You're losing marks, so need to go up to the next level and say what's happening. I'd be very pissed off indeed.

Fatmomma99 Sat 25-Jul-15 01:00:19

Dance, Monkey, dance.

Dance to their individual tunes, get the scores. Go you!

The5DayChicken Sat 25-Jul-15 01:04:51

I've sent a mammoth email to my current tutor tonight about it tonight, but as I've already been up a level over this, poor tutor communication and poor quality course materials I think I'm nervous about going up again. Honestly, I really wish there was a trip advisor style site about colleges...I've had to struggle to maintain good grades every step of the way at this one angry

saoirse31 Sat 25-Jul-15 07:35:34

sympathy to you but you've just reminded me I promised myself I'd really get into learning formatting rules for referencing this summer.... have I? no...!

SorchaN Sat 25-Jul-15 07:59:45

Isn't there some kind of student handbook that sets out how you're supposed to do your referencing? Or at least a few links to online resources? In my view, that kind of information should be available at the beginning of every course, because referencing is important, but it's also difficult, and can be subject to interpretation. And some systems are easier than others (I loathe Chicago from the depths of my soul; Harvard is a joy by comparison).

If you haven't been given this kind of resource, then you probably need to approach each tutor from the outset and ask them what they expect. But someone at some point should be clarifying what's required of you.

When I was a student the course leader would usually give us a list of recommended reading and I would copy that style in my referencing, but I don't know if that would work in your subject.

I hope you get a helpful response to your email!

DoreenLethal Sat 25-Jul-15 08:03:00

There is usually a standard referencing style for the course, eg harvard - of which there are many websites that give the standardised referencing rules.

In my post grad diploma in management, the [one] tutor couldn't agree with himself which method to use, so I did every module without a referencing page. Every time he said 'you need to add references'. Every time I responded with 'Agreed, which style would you like me to use as it has not been clarified despite asking since the first teaching session' and he never once clarified [in 18 months] and he couldn't mark me down because I referred every time to it not being clarified. Never known anything like it. Became like a game - I asked in class each time and each time - no decision.

The5DayChicken Sat 25-Jul-15 10:15:10

Loving your way of dealing with things Doreen! smile.

There is an online resource...And there are two different methods outlined there, both of which claim to be Harvard, and neither of which seems to line up with what any of the tutors want.

Just 10 weeks to go until I see the back of this!

redexpat Sat 25-Jul-15 10:18:19

During my ma we were told e would be marked down for not referencing properly and they mentioned the harvard style but refused point blank to produce a style guide and there were none in the library. It is SO frustrating, and beyond your control, so actually getting the class rep to bring it up is perfectly reasonable. Or the student union maybe?

GraysAnalogy Sat 25-Jul-15 10:20:13

I had all this crap when I was at uni. I would read the handbook, there's always one, and then point out any inconsistencies. Email head of year.

Anon4Now2015 Sat 25-Jul-15 10:21:10

Do you use microsoft word? If you do then just use their referencing tool (tab at the top) and it will do all the references for you automatically.

The5DayChicken Sat 25-Jul-15 10:25:37

I've never known how to use that tool Anon but I'll definitely look it up..I'm guessing it just handles the reference list rather than in-text referencing?

YeOldeTrout Sat 25-Jul-15 10:43:45

Can you get a copy of Endnote?

Anon4Now2015 Sat 25-Jul-15 10:48:04

No it does your in-text referencing too. Of course it can't insert a reference where you don't think to include one, but it can format any references you do include correctly.

It gets you to fill in a pop up box where it asks you for author, page numbers etc for each reference, and then it formats the reference correctly in-text with the click of a button, and does your reference list at the end with a click of another button.

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