Your Guide to Module Handbooks

Okay so a module handbook might not sound like the most thrilling read in the world but hear us out!

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Whether you are a full-time undergraduate or postgraduate student, based on campus or at home, you will have discovered that your department will give you a module handbook to help you in your studies.

This is an essential document that will cover topics such as choosing your modules and student communities, so it is important that you take time to read and digest allthe information.

Welcome to Essex

In the start of every handbook, you will have a welcome page from your head of school which outlines a bit more information on who they are and how the department is run. This is useful as it allows you to understand where to go if you have queries related to academic or personal issues. It also is a chance to learn about what other graduates of the same course have achieved after university life. As you will see there is quite a lot of pages in the handbook, and this is made more digestible with a contents page which directs you to the different sections of text.

Meet your department

It is important to note that there is a ‘meet the team’ page where you will find all the department’s members of staff, including administrative and support staff. If you feel you need to get in touch regarding your course, this is the place to go!

Discover your study resources

Alongside this, another thing to look out for is information on departmental resources and facilities, such as available laboratories and equipment. Whether youare a first time or returning student, knowing what your department can offer you in relation to study space and study resources is essential in your time at Essex. What’s more there is a section on learning and teaching which you should go over as it helps create a clearer picture of term dates and exam periods. There is a reason why this is given to you so early in the academic year, as it allows you to prepare yourself for the level and intensity of teaching during your degree. As well as this, this section includes information on module enrolment, changing modules, module supervisors and employability modules to give youan idea of what your department can help you with academicallyin this area. It is also important to highlight the information given on recording your attendance to make you aware of what is expected of you as a student.

Useful hints and tips

Each module handbook will have links to webpages on topics such as how to use your student card and how to report an absence. These are especially important because the university records this information online and it is vital that you are attending your lectures and seminars to allow you to get the most out of your studies at Essex.

Support whilst at university

As well as this, the handbook will cover information on academic skills and support for students who may need guidance in areas such as research and referencing and academic writing. If you feel you would benefit from this you can read up on the information online, or even contact the Skills for Success team on more guidance.

There are various other sections covered that should be read, for example information on assessments and academic integrity, the use of learning technologies and systems, and the student voice.

In essence, the module handbooks are there to give you an overview of how the university operates and how you should behave as a student in the department. If you really want to make your time at Essex worthwhile, it is a good idea to read and then re-read the module handbook to ensure that you are clear on knowing what to do once you begin your learning journey.


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