Unpacking and interrogating the question will make sure you’ve considered the whole question and looked at all the possibilities. Now it’s time to hunt for more clues. In particular it’s a good idea to think about what the person marking your assignment will be looking for.
Be on the lookout for clues from the assignment description, paying particular attention to details like:
Is there a list of the assessment criteria?
Is there a breakdown of marks, especially if there are sub-sections worth different percentages?
Are there any specific formatting or presentation requirements?
Have they specified a referencing style you should use?
And, lastly, what is the word limit? (This is an important one. The general rule is to make sure you keep within 10% of the word limit either way because too little, or too many words, could end up costing you marks.)
Finally, after analysing the question, if there’s anything you’re unsure of, ask your lecturer and tutor for more details.
Making sure you know all the requirements for your assignment and sticking to the guidelines (like keeping to the word limit and using the correct referencing style and format) will ensure that you don’t lose marks needlessly. Doing some detective work before you start writing will make sure you get the best marks you can.
Look for more clues
The marking key or assignment guidelines can tell you what is required.