Students: please read before you post

Steve Bridger

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Community Manager

27 Oct, 2015 12:02

Using the Community: some guidance for students

Last updated: March 2023

In March 2023 we created a new dedicated group for Students on the CIPD Community for those members preparing for exams or working towards CIPD qualifications. The following guidance has been ‘crowd sourced’ from active members of the community to help you get the most value from these forums.

You are also encouraged to consult the student hub of the website.

Ask your tutor
Your tutor should be your first port of call if you do not understand what is required by an assignment. Bear in mind that course material and context can change from one year to the next, so advice from former students may no longer be as relevant.

It’s ‘learning’ Jim (or Jane)...
If you are starting out on choosing a subject for your management report, it is important that you yourself identify an appropriate topic for study. Indeed, this is all part and parcel of the learning and assessment process.

Demonstrate that you have put in some effort yourself
Once you have a subject and have prepared an outline for your research and presentation, by all means ask for a second opinion (again, after first consulting your tutor). Avoid asking for ready-made answers or procedural route-maps. It is always a good idea to share your own thoughts (however unsure you are about them) as it helps others to know how to focus their advice and makes it less likely you will hear things you might already have thought of. A polite request for feedback on your proposed methodology or draft will usually be met with timesaving replies happily nudging you in the right direction. In short, do not ask your peers to complete your work for you.

Show respect for those whose advice you seek
By all means ask post a link to your online survey or questionnaire. Be patient and do not set your expectations too high – if your request is met with silence or a trickle of replies, it may be due more to the design of your questionnaire, or simply that people are too busy at that time to give you their full attention.

Be careful what you wish for
It is worth emphasising that an unexpected response might still be a valid outcome. It is just as important to know that something cannot be done (and why), as it is to know that it can be done (and how).

Context is everything
It is good practice to share the question or assignment title you are trying to answer. Do not assume we all know what you mean by “CPP assignment 1”.

Have you thought about looking...

...elsewhere on this website? For example, have you browsed the available factsheets (all include useful links and reading lists for further research) or searched the Community archive? Have you contacted the CIPD Library (Tel 020 8612 6210), or consulted your work colleagues or your local CIPD branch? Have you considered searching the People Management website for archived articles (especially the “How to” guides) or checked other websites (e.g. GOV.UK, HMRC, etc.)?

Remember, the more sources you consult, the more likely you are to receive the support you need from the Community (if you can demonstrate the efforts you've already made).

Share what you know...
Let us know how you get on, and pass on the support to others when you see a question posted on the Community that you think you can help answer.