We’ve all been there, the due date on that assignment is getting closer, and you’re still staring at a blank page. There’s no need to suffer the existential dread of looming deadlines on your own. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for help if you’re struggling with a project, or even just trying to understand a certain concept. Instead try one of these 5 free ways to get some help with your assignments.

Form a Study Group

One of the most obvious ways to get some free help on your assignment is to form a study group with your class mates. Now days, with apps like Socratic, or online communities like Cramster, you can even study together from the comfort of your bedroom (no need to hang out in the library for your whole Saturday afternoon!) Having the additional perspective and input of your peers can help you see things you might have otherwise missed, and they can serve as a second pair of eyes for editing too.

Ask an expert online

Sometimes you need help from someone who’s a full bottle on your topic. Luckily there are plenty of services that let you ask an expert for help online, so you don’t even have to close that word document. Websites such as Quora, Fluther and Stack Exchange all provide a great place to get both general and specific advice about any topic, but there are also websites specific to academic studies, like PrestoExperts, where you can submit your question to experts trained in a particular field like law or medicine.

Sign up for some On-Campus Tutoring or get a Mentor

On-Campus tutoring or mentoring are some great ways to get additional help and guidance on your assignments from your peers or professors. Joining a tutoring group or finding a mentor in your area of study can offer help across all your studies, not just one particular class or assignment. While on-campus tutoring or mentoring might be a little more formal in structure and expectations than an informal study group, you still reap a lot of the benefits of social learning.

Check out example assignments for inspiration

A little bit of extra inspiration can go a long what when you’re writing a paper or putting the finishing touches on a critique. Try to not use a “write my paper for me” service. There are plenty of websites, like academia.edu, where people post their essays and assignments for others to read over and draw from. There are also organizations and groups dedicated to providing sample essays on a wide range of topics. Just remember to paraphrase, not plagiarize.

Ask your librarian for help

Many public and academic libraries now offer an online homework help or ask a librarian service. These platforms let you speak directly with a librarian, in real-time, to get direction and assistance on your assignment. A librarian can not only direct you to the best places for your research, they can also answer your referencing questions, something that will definitely come in handy once you finish writing everything down.

This article was written by the NUS community. If you would like to contribute your article, please get in touch.