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General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources

Be sure to note the specific requirements for length and sources stated in the specific writing assignment.

Required Components for all assignments.

Times New Roman font, size 12, double spaced
Cover Page – include the following information, centered
Title of Assignment

Student Name

Course Name

Essay – follow structure/sample outline explained below
References – written on separate page after the essay using APA Format

In-text Citations/APA Reference Page

View the following video regarding plagiarism and citing sources in the body of the essay (in-text citations)


When quoting or paraphrasing, in-text citations are formatted in the body of your essay as follows:

(Author, date).

if no author is provided

(Title, date).

Paraphrase example:

Excel High School writing assignments have specific length and source requirements (General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources, 2020).

Direct quote examples:

“Be sure to note the specific requirements for length and sources stated in the specific writing assignment” (General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources, 2020).


General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources states, “Be sure to note the specific requirements for length and sources stated in the specific writing assignment.”

References – need to be retrieved from public websites (do not use websites that require usernames/passwords). Wikipedia cannot be listed as one of the sources. Always list the course textbook as a source.

Use the following citation generator for help formatting your textbook or outside sources.


click Citation Tools, then choose APA Citation Generator from the drop down menu

Basic APA Website Format: Author Last Name, First Initial. (Date). Title of the Article/Page. web address

Ex. Martin, K. (2020). General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources.www.excelhighschool.com

If no author is listed, begin with the title and format as follows:

Ex. General Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources. (2020). www.excelhighschool.com

Sample Essay Outline

I. Introduction; Paragraph 1: What is the essay about? (approx. 5 sentences)

First point/idea overview
Second point/idea overview
Third point/idea overview (if necessary)
II. Body Paragraph 2: Topic sentence for first point/idea

Supporting detail #1
Supporting detail #2
Supporting detail #3

III. Body Paragraph 3: Topic sentence transitioning to second point/idea

Supporting detail #1
Supporting detail #2
Supporting detail #3

IV. Body Paragraph 4: Topic sentence transitioning to third point/idea (if necessary)

Supporting detail #1
Supporting detail #2
Supporting detail #3

V. Concluding Paragraph 5: Analysis/What was the point of the essay? What does the information reveal?

Summary of first point/idea
Summary of second point/idea
Summary of third point/idea
*** in-text citations must be implemented throughout the essay***

Assignment Instructions:

*** Be sure to review the Writing Assignment Guidelines/Resources page located on the previous module page.

Writing Prompt:

Choose one of the following:

Air Quality- Many human activities result in air pollution, including emissions from vehicles and power plants, negatively impacting human health and economic efficiency. Scientists are analyzing policies to monitor and improve air quality since such regulations first came to pass. How else can we ensure that there will be clean air to breathe for generations to come?
Include one of the Sub-Topics: Clean Air Act, Clean Power Plan
Ecosystems- Healthy ecosystems are essential for the survival and success of countless species on Earth. Scientists are studying the dynamics of these natural systems to assess the benefits of protecting existing ecosystems or restoring those that have been disrupted by human activities or invasive species. What else can be done to preserve these delicate, critical ecosystems?
Include one of the Sub-Topics: Biodiversity, Endangered Species Act, Invasive Species, Ecosystem Services and Management, Fisheries and Fishing
Energy and Electricity- The beginning of the twenty-first century has seen rapid changes in the domestic and international energy landscape. In order to accommodate current and future challenges, scientists are analyzing policy options that balance growing electricity demands with the need to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. Will we be prepared to meet the energy demands of an ever-growing world population?
Include one of the Sub-Topics: Biomass and Plant Biofuels, Electricity Markets and Regulation, Energy Efficiency, Natural Gas, Offshore Drilling, Oil, Renewable and Clean Energy, Shale Gas
Forests- Forests are home to many invaluable ecosystem goods and services as well as a source of wood products for economies around the world. Scientists are evaluating the effectiveness of forest management policies by accounting for the economic, social, and environmental goals of region-specific programs alongside program costs. Are we doing enough to protect our valuable forests?
Include one of the Sub-Topics: Deforestation, Forest Carbon, Timber and Forest Product Markets, Tree Biotechnology

Essay Length: 2 pages

Sources – 2 websites required

List your textbook on the reference page as follows:

Environmental Science. (n.d.). https://www.excelhighschool.com

Plagiarism Warning:
All essays are submitted to a variety of plagiarism software programs to check for copied material. Copying parts or all of other people’s written work and passing it off as yours is a violation of the school’s Academic Integrity Policy, which could lead to expulsion.

Writing assignments will be graded using the rubric below.

*** A grade of at least 12 out of 20 (60% or higher) is a requirement to complete the assignment and complete the course. A grade of 11 indicates a student must revise and resubmit within 10 days. Upon resubmission, the instructor will reevaluate the paper and assign the appropriate grade. ***

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