Online coursework

All forms of written coursework should be submitted for assessment via Turnitin (in Minerva) or, if the file type required is unsupported by Turnitin, using the Minerva Assignment Submission area. Work submitted to Turnitin can be marked using Turnitin Feedback Studio. You can provide students with their marks and feedback via Minerva, using the My Grades tool.

Planning written coursework

Planning activities for students to engage with in their assessments throughout their learning journey will support them in producing quality material and allow you to provide formative feedback to guide their development. These kinds of activities could be:

  • structural plans, literature reviews, drafts, reflections
  • supportive exercises that prompt students to investigate and enhance their reading
  • analyses of formal structures of different styles of article or report

Provide clear guidance to students on how to complete the assessment task. If the written submission is the result of a collaborative activity, be clear about whether you are asking students to submit a shared response or an individual response to a collaborative task. Similarly, you may want to ask students who have been maintaining a log or portfolio to submit a reflective summary or final report.

Tools students can use for written coursework

You should provide your students with clear guidance on the expected format for their submission, and make sure that they are aware of any relevant rules within your School Code of Practice on Assessment.

There are two key tools provided by the University which students can use to prepare written coursework for submission:

Office 365

Students can use Microsoft Office 365 tools including Word to prepare their submissions in most cases. All students have free access to Office 365, both online and as downloadable apps.

Students should be advised to store their files in OneDrive before uploading for submission.

Office 365 tools can be used by individual students to produce their written submissions. Equally, they can be used for group tasks since they allow groups of students to share and collaborate on their work prior to submitting their assignment.

Minerva Blogs and Journals

For some forms of written assessment, such as reflective logs, it may be more appropriate for students to use Minerva tools such as blogs or journals to prepare their submissions. These can be set up to be marked directly, or students can be required to collate a submission to be uploaded via Turnitin.

Blogs are best suited for group work since they cannot be made private, whilst Journals are private by default but can be shared with other students. PebblePad, the University’s e-portfolio system, can be used for creating reflective logs or for producing blogs which can be shared both privately and publicly.


The default system for the submission of text-based assignments is Turnitin in Minerva. Where students need to submit a file type not supported by Turnitin, the Minerva Assignment tool can be used instead.


Turnitin is a powerful plagiarism detection and marking system which is integrated with Minerva. You can find step-by-step guides for the set-up and administration of Turnitin submission inboxes on the Minerva support website.

The following videos provide walkthrough guidance for the administration of Turnitin submission inboxes:

Minerva Assignments

The Minerva Assignment Tool can be used for all file formats.

Please note that the Assignments Tool does not include an Academic Integrity Declaration as standard, so an additional coversheet is required.

Grading and feedback

Written coursework submitted via Turnitin can be marked using Turnitin Feedback Studio. Marks and feedback can be returned to students via the My Grades tool in Minerva.

Turnitin Feedback Studio

Turnitin’s Feedback Studio is a tool for marking electronically. With Feedback Studio, you can annotate directly onto the document using text, add Bubble and QuickMark comments, leave typed or audio general feedback, and grade using a Rubric or Grading Form.

You can find detailed guidance on the use of Feedback Studio for marking and return of feedback to students on our Feedback Studio page. The Minerva support website also contains lots of helpful information.  You can also access a demo paper to try out marking online. If you have an iPad, you can also mark using the Turnitin App.

Minerva Grade Centre / My Grades

Both Turnitin and the Assignment Tool are integrated with the Minerva Grade Centre. You can find detailed guidance on the set-up and use of Grade Centre on the Minerva support site.

Grade Centre can be used to access and organise all student submissions and other gradable activity within a Minerva module area.

The My Grades tool can be used to provide students with access to all their marks and feedback in one place.

Case studies

The following case studies describe examples of online assessments of written coursework which can be used as a model for your assessment:



Microsoft Office 365