Topic Analysis

A topic analysis will help you to clarify and understand what your assessment question is asking you to do.

You will generally be given three key pieces of information:

  1. The key topic or concept words direct you in what to research.
  2. The limits or qualifiers tell you the specific focus of the topic or concept.
  3. The task or instruction terms tell how you are to deal with the content.CSU has a list of explanations for common instruction words.


For your MHP114 Assessment item 3, you are to use the Case Study that can be found on the MHP114 Interact2 site  to create a graphic item and you are required to include the following in relation to the Case Study:

  • Describe and discuss the  developmental stages that are evident over the lifespan including: childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, middle age, and advanced years;
  • Describe and discuss the personality theories and theorists who best explain health-related issues, evident in the case study, in each of the developmental stages;
  • Discuss the tasks / roles that occur and are evident in each of the human development stages.

* Remember to also check the Case Study as it will also contain  key concepts for your researching.


Instruction words

Describe, discuss
Some key concepts Developmental stages, lifespan, personality theories, theorist, human, adolescence, health issues



Write down the key concepts from your topic and have a go at brainstorming as many alternative keywords and phrases as possible.

Thinking about your topic in this way forces you to describe your topic in "other words", which will provide you with some useful keyword alternatives as well as help you to cement your understanding of the topic.

Topic analysis

Find additional keywords

Dictionaries and encyclopaedias can help you to find additional keywords and get an overview of the concept.

Oxford Reference Online is a huge repository of subject-specific dictionaries, encyclopaedias, and other reference-type material.