Academic Style

Academic style conventions and word count

Assessments are usually the product of many hours of hard work, so poor presentation can spoil an otherwise excellent piece of work and you will not receive marks if you are not following certain academic conventions.

It is essential that you keep a separate copy of your work in addition to the copy submitted for marking, this can be in electronic or paper form. You should also keep any digital or paper receipts from work handed in.

Presenting work

Font Style  Arial, Times New Roman, Trebuchet MS or close equivalent
Font Size12 point for main text, 10 point for footnotes, no less than 10 point for tables
Line Spacing  1.5 line spacing for all submitted work
Indentation  Normal – no greater than 2.6 top and bottom 1.5, 2 left and right margins
Justification  Main text justified left
Page Numbers  Bottom centre of every page
PrintingPrint on both sides of the page if possible to save paper costs and use black ink
Headers  UCSD student number and module code

Word Count

Your assessment brief, within your module guide, will state the required word count and time frame. You are permitted to exceed this by 10%, to include all in-text references and text within tables.

If you go over the word count/time limit by more than 10% the marker will stop marking, this will result in the rest of your work not being read and this will impact your grade.

Essay X word count required 1500 words 

Work submitted lengthOutcome
up to 1500All work marked and graded
1500-1650All work marked and graded
1651-1800The first 1650 words marked and graded, the remaining words not read or marked
1801-2000The first 1650 words marked and graded, the remaining words not read or marked

Quick reference guide