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Responsibilities of the school© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 7
It is required that the supervisor:
· provides the student with advice and guidance in the skills of undertaking research
· encourages and supports the student throughout the research and writing of the extended essay
· discusses the choice of topic with the student and, in particular, helps to formulate a well-focused
research question
· ensures that the chosen research question satisfies appropriate legal and ethical standards with
regard to health and safety, confidentiality, human rights, animal welfare and environmental issues
· is familiar with the regulations governing the extended essay and the assessment criteria, and gives
copies of these to the student
· reads and comments on the first draft only of the extended essay (but does not edit the draft)
· monitors the progress of the extended essay to offer guidance and to ensure that the essay is the
student’s own work; and reads the final version to confirm its authenticity
· submits a predicted grade for the student’s extended essay to IBCA
· completes the supervisor’s report (if the extended essay cover is not signed by both the student and
the supervisor, the essay will not be accepted for assessment and may be returned to the school)
· provides an explanation in the report in cases where the number of hours spent with the student in
discussing the extended essay is zero; in particular, it is necessary to describe how it has been possible
to guarantee the authenticity of the essay in such circumstances
· writes a report and presents it to the school’s Diploma Programme coordinator if malpractice, such
as plagiarism, is suspected in the final draft.
It is strongly recommended that the supervisor:
· reads recent extended essay reports for the subject
· spends between three and five hours with each student, including the time spent on the viva voce
· ensures that the chosen research question is appropriate for the subject
· advises students on:
- access to appropriate resources (such as people, a library, a laboratory)
- techniques of information-/evidence-/data-gathering and analysis
- writing an abstract
- documenting sources
Outline
Responsibilities of the supervisor
8 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
· conducts a short, concluding interview (viva voce) with the student before completing the supervisor’s
report.
The student may work with or consult external sources, but it remains the responsibility of the supervisor
within the school to complete all the requirements described above.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 9
Responsibilities of the supervisor#p#分页标题#e#
It is required that students:
· choose a topic that fits into one of the subjects on the approved extended essay list (in the Vade
Mecum)
· observe the regulations relating to the extended essay
· meet deadlines
· acknowledge all sources of information and ideas in an approved academic manner.
It is strongly recommended that students:
· start work early
· think very carefully about the research question for their essay
· plan how, when and where they will find material for their essay
· plan a schedule for both researching and writing the essay, including extra time for delays and
unforeseen problems
· record sources as their research progresses (rather than trying to reconstruct a list at the end)
· have a clear structure for the essay itself before beginning to write
· check and proofread the final version carefully
· make sure that all basic requirements are met (for example, all students should get full marks for the
abstract).
Outline
Responsibilities of the student
10 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Recommended: things to do
Examiners’ reports frequently emphasize the following positive steps.
Before starting work on the extended essay, students should:
· read the assessment criteria
· read previous essays to identify strengths and possible pitfalls
· spend time working out the research question (imagine the finished essay)
· work out a structure for the essay.
During the research process, and while writing the essay, students should:
· start work early and stick to deadlines
· maintain a good working relationship with their supervisor
· construct an argument that relates to the research question
· use the library and consult librarians for advice
· record sources as they go along (rather than trying to reconstruct a list at the end)
· choose a new topic and a research question that can be answered if there is a problem with the
original topic
· use the appropriate language for the subject
· let their interest and enthusiasm show.
After completing the essay, students should:
· write the abstract
· check and proofread the final version carefully.
Details—all essays
Advice to students from examiners
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 11
Recommended: things to avoid
Examiners’ reports also mention these things to be avoided at all costs.
Students should not work with a research question that is too broad or too vague, too narrow, too
difficult or inappropriate. A good research question is one that asks something worth asking and that is
answerable within 40 hours/4,000 words. It should be clear what would count as evidence in relation to#p#分页标题#e#
the question, and it must be possible to acquire such evidence in the course of the investigation. If a
student does not know what evidence is needed, or cannot collect such evidence, it will not be possible
to answer the research question.
In addition, students should not:
· forget to analyse the research question
· ignore the assessment criteria
· collect material that is irrelevant to the research question
· use the Internet uncritically
· plagiarize
· merely describe or report (evidence must be used to support the argument)
· repeat the introduction in the conclusion
· cite sources that are not used.
One further piece of advice is as follows: the more background a student has in the subject, the better
the chance he or she has of writing a good extended essay. Choosing to write the extended essay in a
subject that is not being studied as part of the Diploma Programme often leads to lower marks.
12 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Advice to students from examiners
It is recommended that teachers advise their students about researching and writing the extended essay
as follows.
The research process
When researching the extended essay, students should do the following.
1. Choose the approved Diploma Programme subject for the extended essay.
· Read the assessment criteria and the relevant subject guidance.
2. Choose a topic.
3. Formulate a well-focused research question.
4. Plan the investigation and writing process.
· Identify how and where they will gather material.
· Identify which system of academic referencing they will use, appropriate to the subject of the
essay.
· Set deadlines for themselves that will allow them to meet the school’s requirements.
5. Plan a structure (outline headings) for the essay. This may change as the investigation develops but
it is useful to have a sense of direction.
6. Undertake some preparatory reading.
· If students discover that it will not be possible to obtain the evidence needed in the time available,
the research question should be changed. This should be done sooner rather than later: students
should not lose time waiting and hoping that something will turn up. Students should go back
to stage 3, 2 or 1, and choose a new research question that can be answered.
7. Carry out the investigation.
· The material gathered should be assembled in a logical order, linked to the structure of the essay.
Only then will students know whether they have enough evidence for each stage of the argument
so that they can proceed to the next.
· Students should be prepared for things to go wrong. Sometimes they may discover something
later in the investigation that undermines what they thought had been established earlier on. If#p#分页标题#e#
that happens, the investigation plan needs to be revised.
Details—all essays
Researching and writing the extended essay
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 13
Writing the extended essay
The structure of the essay is very important. This is what helps students to organize the argument, making
best use of the evidence gathered.
The required elements of the final work to be submitted are listed here. More details about each element
are given in the “Formal presentation of the extended essay” section. Please note that the order in which
they are presented here is not necessarily the order in which they should be written.
· Title page
· Abstract
· Contents page
· Introduction
· Body (development/methods/results)
· Conclusion
· References and bibliography
· Appendices
Students should use the chosen system of academic referencing as soon as they start writing. That way,
they are less likely to forget to include a citation. It is also easier than trying to add references at a later
stage. Most modern word processors are helpful with this.
Some students draft the introduction first. If students do that, they must be prepared to revise it once
the essay is complete.
The main task is writing the body of the essay, which should be presented in the form of a reasoned
argument. The form of this varies with the subject of the essay but, as the argument develops, it should
be clear to the reader what relevant evidence has been discovered, where/how it has been discovered
and how it supports the argument. In most subjects, sub-headings within the main body of the essay will
help the reader to understand the argument (and will also help the student to keep on track).
Once the main body of the essay is complete, it is possible to finalize the introduction (which tells the
reader what to expect) and the conclusion (which says what has been achieved, including notes of any
limitations and any questions that have not been resolved).
Any information that is important to the argument should not be included in appendices or
footnotes/endnotes. The examiner is not bound to read notes or appendices, so an essay that is not
complete in itself will lose marks.
The remaining stages in writing the essay take time but are not difficult. Students need to check that
they have cited sources for all material that is not their own, and that the citations are complete and
consistent with the chosen referencing system. The bibliography should list only the sources used in the
essay. The whole essay needs to be proofread carefully (computer spelling and grammar checkers are
useful but will not do everything). Pages must be numbered and the contents page must be completed.
The abstract is normally written last.#p#分页标题#e#
14 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Researching and writing the extended essay
The extended essay should be written in a clear, correct and formal academic style, appropriate to the
subject from which the topic is drawn. The use of word processors is encouraged.
The length of the extended essay
The upper limit is 4,000 words for all extended essays. This upper limit includes the introduction, the
body, the conclusion and any quotations, but does not include:
· the abstract
· acknowledgments
· the contents page
· maps, charts, diagrams, annotated illustrations and tables
· equations, formulas and calculations
· citations/references (whether parenthetical or numbered)
· footnotes or endnotes
· the bibliography
· appendices.
Essays containing more than 4,000 words are subject to penalties and examiners are not required to read
material in excess of the word limit.
Students writing their extended essay in Japanese or Chinese should use the following conversions.
Japanese: 1 word = approximately 2 Japanese characters
Chinese: 1 word = approximately 1.2 Chinese characters
Title
The title should provide a clear indication of the focus of the essay. It should be precise and not necessarily
phrased in the form of a question.
Abstract
An abstract not exceeding 300 words must be included with the essay submitted. It does not serve as an
introduction, but presents an overview of the extended essay, and should, therefore, be written last.
Details—all essays
Formal presentation of the extended essay
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 15
The inclusion of an abstract is intended to encourage students to examine closely the development of
an argument within the extended essay and the pertinence of any conclusions that are reached. It is also
designed to allow readers to understand quickly the contents of the extended essay.
The minimum requirements for the abstract are for it to state clearly:
· the research question being investigated
· the scope of the investigation
· the conclusion(s) of the extended essay.
The abstract should be typed or word processed on one side of a sheet of paper, and placed immediately
after the title page.
Contents page
A contents page must be provided at the beginning of the extended essay and all pages should be
numbered. An index is not required.
Illustrations
Presentation and overall neatness are important, and it is essential that illustrative material, if included,
is well set out and used effectively. Graphs, diagrams, tables and maps are effective only if they are clearly
labelled and can be interpreted with ease. All such material that is incorporated into the extended essay#p#分页标题#e#
must be directly related to the text and acknowledged where appropriate. The use of photographs and
other images is acceptable only if they are captioned and/or annotated and are used to illustrate a specific
point made in the extended essay.
Bibliographies, references and citations
An extended essay must reflect intellectual honesty in research practices and provide the reader with
the exact sources of quotations, ideas and points of view through accurate bibliographies and referencing.
Producing accurate citations, referencing and a bibliography is a skill that students should be seeking to
perfect. Documenting the research in this way is vital: it allows readers to evaluate the evidence for
themselves and it shows the student’s understanding of the importance of the sources used.
Failure to comply with this requirement will be viewed as plagiarism and will, therefore, be
treated as a case of malpractice.
What is a bibliography?
A bibliography is an alphabetical list of every source used to research and write the essay. Sources that
are not cited in the body of the essay, but were important in informing the approach taken, should be
cited in the introduction or in an acknowledgment. The bibliography should list only those sources cited.
16 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Formal presentation of the extended essay
There are a number of different documentation styles available for use when writing research papers;
most are appropriate in some academic disciplines but not others. The supervisor should help the student
decide on a style for the particular subject of the essay. It is important to remember that, whatever style
is chosen, it must be applied consistently. When choosing the documentation style, the student needs
to have a clear understanding of how it is to be used before embarking on the research task. The
documentation style should be applied in both the final draft of the essay and in the initial research
stages of taking notes. This is good practice, not only for producing a high-quality final product, but also
for reducing the opportunities and temptation to plagiarize.
Major documentation styles
The following are examples of acceptable documentation styles.
· American Political Science Association (APSA)
· American Psychological Association (APA)
· Chicago/Turabian
· Council of Biology Editors (CBE)
· Harvard citation and referencing guide
· Modern Language Association (MLA)
· Numbered references
Finding information about such systems is not difficult. Entering a string such as “academic referencing”
into an Internet search engine will bring up lots of useful material. Reputable university sites often allow
comparison of several different systems (and do not usually disappear overnight). One such example#p#分页标题#e#
(accessed 13 March 2006) is http://www.wisc.edu/writing/Handbook/Documentation.html. There are
numerous other online guides to creating bibliographies, as well as printed writers’ handbooks.
What is a reference?
A reference is a way of indicating to the reader, in an orderly form, where information has been obtained.
A reference provides all the information needed to find the source material. References must be cited
because they acknowledge the sources used, and enable the reader to consult the work and verify the
data that has been presented.
References must be given whenever someone else’s work is quoted or summarized. References can come
from many different sources, including books, magazines, journals, newspapers, e-mails, Internet sites
and interviews.
Internet references should include the title of the extract used as well as the web site address, the date
it was accessed and, if possible, the author. Caution should be exercised with information on web sites
that do not give references or that cannot be cross-checked against other sources. The more important
a particular point is to the essay, the more the quality of its source needs to be evaluated.
Any references to interviews should state the name of the interviewer, the name of the interviewee, the
date and the place of the interview.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 17
Formal presentation of the extended essay
What is a citation?
A citation is a shorthand method of making a reference in the body of an essay, which is then linked to
the full reference at the end of the essay. A citation provides the reader with accurate references so that
he or she can locate the source easily. How sources are cited varies with the particular documentation
style that has been chosen. Page numbers should normally be given when referencing printed material:
in some styles this will be in the citation, in others in the full reference. Once again, it is important to
emphasize that there must be consistency of method when citing sources.
Appendices, footnotes and endnotes
Appendices, footnotes and endnotes are not an essential section of the extended essay and examiners
are not required to read them, so care should be taken to include all information of direct relevance to
the analysis and argument in the main body of the essay. An essay that attempts to evade the word limit
by including important material in notes or appendices risks losing marks under several criteria.
Unless considered essential, complete lists of raw data should not be included in the extended essay.
Students should not constantly refer to material presented in an appendix as this may disrupt the continuity
of the essay.
18 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Formal presentation of the extended essay
Apart from graphic material, materials in other media may be submitted only as supporting appendices#p#分页标题#e#
and should not detract from the written content of the extended essay.
Computers
The use of computers is encouraged where they are appropriate as tools for analysing data relevant to
the subject of the extended essay. Material such as a hard copy of computer output may be included in
the extended essay, but any associated program should be referred to or reproduced, if original, only as
an appendix.
Computer programs may only be included (in particular circumstances) in computer science and physics
essays. (See the “Computer science” and “Physics” sections for further details.)
CDs, DVDs and audio-visual materials
The model for the extended essay is a paper in an academic journal. Hence, materials such as these should
not normally be included. They are liable to be lost or damaged and the examiner will probably not have
time to look at them.
Specimen materials
Specimen materials used in, or produced by, investigations do not form part of the extended essay and
must not be submitted. Photographic evidence may be submitted in place of such material.
Details—all essays
The use of other media and materials
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 19
The viva voce is a short interview between the student and the supervisor, and is a recommended
conclusion to the extended essay process. Students who do not attend the viva voce may be disadvantaged.
The viva voce serves the following purposes.
· A check on plagiarism and malpractice in general
· An opportunity to reflect on successes and difficulties in the research process
· An opportunity to reflect on what has been learned
· An aid to the supervisor’s report
The viva voce should last between 10 and 15 minutes. This is included in the recommended amount of
time the supervisor should spend with the student. The following are examples of questions that can be
asked, which should be adapted to the particular essay and student.
· “I am not clear what you mean on page XXX. You quote Y: could you explain a little more about what
this tells us?”
· “On page *** you cite Z. I couldn’t find this reference (for example, web site). Could you tell me more
about it?”
· “What have been the high and low points of the research and writing processes?”
· “What were the most interesting aspects of the process? Did you discover anything that surprised
you?”
· “What have you learned through writing this essay? Is there any advice you would want to pass on
to someone just starting out on an extended essay?”
· “Is there anything else that you would particularly like me to mention in my report?”
In conducting the viva voce and writing the report, supervisors should bear in mind the following.#p#分页标题#e#
· Examiners want to know that students understand any material (which must be properly referenced)
that they have included in their essays. This is particularly important in subjects like mathematics. If
the way the material is used in context in the essay does not clearly establish this, the supervisor can
check the student’s understanding in the viva voce and report on it.
· Minor slips in citation and referencing may lose the odd mark. If there appear to be major
shortcomings, the supervisor should investigate thoroughly. No essay should be authenticated if the
supervisor believes it contains plagiarism.
· In assessing criterion K (holistic judgment), examiners will take into account any information given
in the report about unusual intellectual inventiveness or persistence in the face of unexpected
difficulties.
Details—all essays
The viva voce (concluding interview)
20 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
· The report should not attempt to do the examiner’s job. It should refer to things, largely
process-related, that may not be obvious in the essay itself.
· Unless there are particular problems, the viva voce should end positively. Completion of a major
piece of work such as the extended essay is something for students to feel good about.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 21
The viva voce (concluding interview)
Using the assessment criteria
The method of assessment used by the IBO is criterion-related. That is to say, the method of assessment
judges each student in relation to identified assessment criteria and not in relation to the work of other
students.
· The aim is to find, for each criterion, the descriptor that conveys most adequately the achievement
level attained by the student. The process, therefore, is one of approximation. In the light of any one
criterion, a student’s work may contain features denoted by a high achievement level descriptor
combined with features appropriate to a lower one. A professional judgment should be made in
identifying the descriptor that approximates most closely to the work.
· Having scrutinized the work to be assessed, the descriptors for each criterion should be read, starting
with level 0, until one is reached that describes an achievement level that the work being assessed
does not match as well as the previous level. The work is therefore best described by the preceding
achievement level descriptor and this level should be recorded.
· Only whole numbers should be used, not partial points such as fractions or decimals.
· The highest descriptors do not imply faultless performance and assessors and teachers should not
hesitate to use the extremes, including zero, if they are appropriate descriptions of the work being#p#分页标题#e#
assessed.
· Descriptors should not be considered as marks or percentages, although the descriptor levels are
ultimately added together to obtain a total. It should not be assumed that there are other arithmetical
relationships; for example, a level 4 performance is not necessarily twice as good as a level 2
performance.
· A student who attains a particular achievement level in relation to one criterion will not necessarily
attain similar achievement levels in relation to the others. It should not be assumed that the overall
assessment of the students will produce any particular distribution of scores.
All extended essays are externally assessed by examiners appointed by the IBO, and are marked on a
scale from 0 to 36. This maximum score is made up of the total criterion levels available for each essay.
The total score obtained on the scale 0 to 36 is used to determine in which of the following bands the
extended essay is placed. This band, in conjunction with the band for theory of knowledge, determines
the number of diploma points awarded for these two requirements. See the following “Award of diploma
points” section for further details.
Details—all essays
Assessment
22 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
The band descriptors are:
A Work of an excellent standard
B Work of a good standard
C Work of a satisfactory standard
D Work of a mediocre standard
E Work of an elementary standard.
Award of diploma points
The extended essay contributes to the overall diploma score through the award of points in conjunction
with theory of knowledge. A maximum of three points are awarded according to a student’s combined
performance in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge.
Both the extended essay and theory of knowledge are measured against published assessment criteria.
According to the quality of the work, and based on the application of these assessment criteria, a student’s
performance in each of the extended essay and theory of knowledge will fall into one of the five bands
described previously.
The total number of points awarded is determined by the combination of the performance levels achieved
by the student in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge according to the following matrix.
The diploma points matrix
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 23
Assessment
A student who, for example, writes a good extended essay and whose performance in theory of knowledge
is judged to be satisfactory will be awarded 1 point, while a student who writes a mediocre extended
essay and whose performance in theory of knowledge is judged to be excellent will be awarded 2 points.
A student who fails to submit an extended essay will be awarded N for the extended essay, will score no#p#分页标题#e#
points, and will not be awarded a diploma.
Performance in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge of an elementary standard is a failing
condition for the award of the diploma.
24 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Assessment
This section provides an overview of what each criterion assesses in the extended essay. Further advice
on interpreting the assessment criteria is provided within the guidelines for each subject in the
“Details—subject specific” section.
A: research question
(Objectives 1 and 2)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the purpose of the essay is specified. In many subjects, the
aim of the essay will normally be expressed as a question and, therefore, this criterion is called the
“research question”. However, certain disciplines may permit or encourage different ways of formulating
the research task.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
The research question is not stated in the introduction or does not lend itself to
a systematic investigation in an extended essay in the subject in which it is
registered.
0
The research question is stated in the introduction but is not clearly expressed or
is too broad in scope to be treated effectively within the word limit.
1
The research question is clearly stated in the introduction and sharply focused,
making effective treatment possible within the word limit.
2
Details—all essays
Assessment criteria
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 25
B: introduction
(Objectives 1 and 5)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the introduction makes clear how the research question relates
to existing knowledge on the topic and explains how the topic chosen is significant and worthy of
investigation.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
Little or no attempt is made to set the research question into context. There is
little or no attempt to explain the significance of the topic.
0
Some attempt is made to set the research question into context. There is some
attempt to explain the significance of the topic and why it is worthy of
investigation.
1
The context of the research question is clearly demonstrated. The introduction
clearly explains the significance of the topic and why it is worthy of investigation.
2
C: investigation
(Objectives 1 and 3)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the investigation is planned and an appropriate range of
sources has been consulted, or data has been gathered, that is relevant to the research question. Where
the research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which the essay
is registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2.
Descriptor#p#分页标题#e#
Achievement
level
There is little or no evidence that sources have been consulted or data gathered,
and little or no evidence of planning in the investigation.
0
A range of inappropriate sources has been consulted, or inappropriate data has
been gathered, and there is little evidence that the investigation has been planned.
1
A limited range of appropriate sources has been consulted, or data has been
gathered, and some relevant material has been selected. There is evidence of
some planning in the investigation.
2
A sufficient range of appropriate sources has been consulted, or data has been
gathered, and relevant material has been selected. The investigation has been
satisfactorily planned.
3
An imaginative range of appropriate sources has been consulted, or data has been
gathered, and relevant material has been carefully selected. The investigation has
been well planned.
4
26 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Assessment criteria
D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
(Objectives 3 and 7)
Where the research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which
the essay is registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2. “Academic context”,
as used in this guide, can be defined as the current state of the field of study under investigation. However,
this is to be understood in relation to what can reasonably be expected of a pre-university student. For
example, to obtain a level 4, it would be sufficient to relate the investigation to the principal lines of
inquiry in the relevant field; detailed, comprehensive knowledge is not required.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
0 The essay demonstrates no real knowledge or understanding of the topic studied.
The essay demonstrates some knowledge but little understanding of the topic
studied. The essay shows little awareness of an academic context for the
investigation.
1
The essay demonstrates an adequate knowledge and some understanding of the
topic studied. The essay shows some awareness of an academic context for the
investigation.
2
The essay demonstrates a good knowledge and understanding of the topic studied.
Where appropriate, the essay successfully outlines an academic context for the
investigation.
3
The essay demonstrates a very good knowledge and understanding of the topic
studied. Where appropriate, the essay clearly and precisely locates the investigation
in an academic context.
4
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 27
Assessment criteria
E: reasoned argument
(Objectives 1 and 4)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the essay uses the material collected to present ideas in a#p#分页标题#e#
logical and coherent manner, and develops a reasoned argument in relation to the research question.
Where the research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which
the essay is registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
There is no attempt to develop a reasoned argument in relation to the research
question.
0
There is a limited or superficial attempt to present ideas in a logical and coherent
manner, and to develop a reasoned argument in relation to the research question.
1
There is some attempt to present ideas in a logical and coherent manner, and to
develop a reasoned argument in relation to the research question, but this is only
partially successful.
2
Ideas are presented in a logical and coherent manner, and a reasoned argument
is developed in relation to the research question, but with some weaknesses.
3
Ideas are presented clearly and in a logical and coherent manner. The essay
succeeds in developing a reasoned and convincing argument in relation to the
research question.
4
F: application of analytical and evaluative skills
appropriate to the subject
(Objective 7)
Descriptor
Achievement
level
0 The essay shows no application of appropriate analytical and evaluative skills.
1 The essay shows little application of appropriate analytical and evaluative skills.
The essay shows some application of appropriate analytical and evaluative skills,
which may be only partially effective.
2
3 The essay shows sound application of appropriate analytical and evaluative skills.
The essay shows effective and sophisticated application of appropriate analytical
and evaluative skills.
4
28 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Assessment criteria
G: use of language appropriate to the subject
(Objective 6)
Descriptor
Achievement
level
The language used is inaccurate and unclear. There is no effective use of
terminology appropriate to the subject.
0
The language used sometimes communicates clearly but does not do so
consistently. The use of terminology appropriate to the subject is only partly
accurate.
1
The language used for the most part communicates clearly. The use of terminology
appropriate to the subject is usually accurate.
2
The language used communicates clearly. The use of terminology appropriate to
the subject is accurate, although there may be occasional lapses.
3
The language used communicates clearly and precisely. Terminology appropriate
to the subject is used accurately, with skill and understanding.
4
H: conclusion
(Objectives 1, 4 and 5)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the essay incorporates a conclusion that is relevant to the#p#分页标题#e#
research question and is consistent with the evidence presented in the essay.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
Little or no attempt is made to provide a conclusion that is relevant to the research
question.
0
A conclusion is attempted that is relevant to the research question but may not
be entirely consistent with the evidence presented in the essay.
1
An effective conclusion is clearly stated; it is relevant to the research question and
consistent with the evidence presented in the essay. It should include unresolved
questions where appropriate to the subject concerned.
2
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 29
Assessment criteria
I: formal presentation
(Objective 5)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the layout, organization, appearance and formal elements of
the essay consistently follow a standard format. The formal elements are: title page, table of contents,
page numbers, illustrative material, quotations, documentation (including references, citations and
bibliography) and appendices (if used).
Descriptor
Achievement
level
0 The formal presentation is unacceptable, or the essay exceeds 4,000 words.
1 The formal presentation is poor.
2 The formal presentation is satisfactory.
3 The formal presentation is good.
4 The formal presentation is excellent.
J: abstract
(Objective 5)
The requirements for the abstract are for it to state clearly the research question that was investigated,
how the investigation was undertaken and the conclusion(s) of the essay.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
The abstract exceeds 300 words or one or more of the required elements of an
abstract (listed above) is missing.
0
1 The abstract contains the elements listed above but they are not all clearly stated.
2 The abstract clearly states all the elements listed above.
30 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Assessment criteria
K: holistic judgment
(Objective 1)
The purpose of this criterion is to assess the qualities that distinguish an essay from the average, such as
intellectual initiative, depth of understanding and insight. While these qualities will be clearly present
in the best work, less successful essays may also show some evidence of them and should be rewarded
under this criterion.
Descriptor
Achievement
level
0 The essay shows no evidence of such qualities.
1 The essay shows little evidence of such qualities.
2 The essay shows some evidence of such qualities.
3 The essay shows clear evidence of such qualities.
4 The essay shows considerable evidence of such qualities.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 31
Assessment criteria
The General regulations: Diploma Programme states that, in addition to subject requirements, the IB#p#分页标题#e#
diploma has additional requirements that include the completion and submission of an extended essay
in a subject available for this purpose. These general regulations also state that schools must comply
with the details and procedures in the Vade Mecum (the procedures manual for Diploma Programme
coordinators and teachers), which gives detailed information about the administration of this diploma
requirement.
The requirement
Every IB diploma student must submit an extended essay. Extended essays may only be submitted by
students in the “diploma” or “retake” categories. Students in the “retake” category may submit either a
new extended essay for assessment, registered in the same or a different subject, or a revised extended
essay.
Supervision
It is the school’s responsibility to ensure that each student submitting an extended essay is supervised
by a teacher at the school where the student is registered for Diploma Programme examinations. The
teacher must have appropriate qualifications and/or experience in the subject chosen by the student,
and must be familiar with the Diploma Programme. The teacher who is supervising a student’s work on
his or her extended essay, known as “the supervisor”, must not be related to the student.
Language in which the extended essay is written
Extended essays submitted in a group 1 or group 2 language must be written in that language, with the
exception of Latin and classical Greek. Extended essays for subjects in groups 3 to 6, and in Latin and
classical Greek, must be written in English, French or Spanish.
Academic honesty
The student is ultimately responsible for ensuring that his or her extended essay is authentic, with the
work or ideas of others fully and correctly acknowledged. Additionally, it is the responsibility of a supervisor
to confirm that, for each student he or she has supervised, to the best of his or her knowledge, the version
of the extended essay submitted for assessment is the authentic work of the student.
Both plagiarism and collusion are forms of malpractice that incur a penalty. The same piece of work, or
two versions of the same work, cannot be submitted to meet the requirements of both the extended
essay and another assessment component of a subject contributing to the diploma or an additional
certificate.
Details—all essays
Regulations
32 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Choice of subject
The Diploma Programme subject chosen for the extended essay does not have to be one of the subjects
being studied by the student for his or her diploma. The list of available subjects, including groups 1
and 2, is given in the Vade Mecum. Extended essays cannot be submitted in theory of knowledge,
school-based syllabuses and pilot subjects, with exceptions for the latter two categories listed in the#p#分页标题#e#
Vade Mecum.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 33
Regulations
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
A group 1 extended essay is intended for students who are writing in their mother tongue (that is, students
who could offer the language in question as a language A1). The essay must be written in the language
for which it is registered. Students studying a group 2 language who are interested in writing about the
literature of that language should read the “Group 2” section. It is intended that students should not
submit a group 1 extended essay in their group 2 language.
A group 1 extended essay provides students with an opportunity to:
· study intensively a literary topic that is suitable in nature and scope for discussion in this form
· engage in personal critical judgment of literature and to compare this, where appropriate, with
established critical comment
· develop the ability to put forward their views persuasively and in a well-structured manner, using a
register appropriate to the study of literature.
Creative writing and essays based on language, culture and/or society topics are not currently permissible
as group 1 extended essays.
Choice of topic
A group 1 extended essay should fit into one of the two following categories.
Category 1
The essay must be based on the literature of countries where the language is spoken (that is, all works
discussed will originally have been written in the language of the essay).
Essays that attempt to interpret literary works as reflections of the writer’s life are rarely successful,
tending to produce reductive readings based on second-hand information. Biographical topics should
thus usually be avoided.
The following are some examples of appropriate topics for guidance only.
English Dance in Jane Austen’s novels
“What are the role and the significance of dance in Pride and Prejudice
and Emma?”
Leading to the research
question
Details—subject specific
Group 1
34 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
English Death in Emily Brontë’s and Emily Dickinson’s poetry
“How is the subject of death treated in selected poems by Emily Brontë
and Emily Dickinson?”
Leading to the research
question
French Fiction and history in Blaise Cendrars’ L’Or
“How and why does Cendrars modify facts and rewrite history in his first
novel?”
Leading to the research
question
Danish The presentation of nature in poetry
Leading to the research “Perceptions of nature in Danish poetry of the 1890s.”#p#分页标题#e#
question
Italian Imagery and themes in the work of Giovanni Pascoli
Leading to the research “The theme of the nest in the poetry of Giovanni Pascoli.”
question
Category 2
The essay must be a comparison of at least one literary work originally written in the language of the
essay with a literary work or works originally written in a different language to that of the essay and
probably studied in translation.
The following are some examples of appropriate topics for guidance only.
English/French/German The presentation of the hero in literature
“In what different ways do Shaw, Anouilh and Schiller present Joan of
Arc in their respective plays?”
Leading to the research
question
French/Russian Male authors and female characters
“In what ways do the male authors of Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary
seek to render their heroines sympathetic to the reader? How far do they
succeed?”
Leading to the research
question
Italian/English The use of literary tradition
“Themes and stylistic devices from Dante in TS Eliot’s The Waste Land and
Four Quartets.”
Leading to the research
question
The topic chosen must be literary in nature and could be about a particular aspect, or be a comparative
study, of a work or works, author, period or genre.
The extended essay may relate to work studied in class but students must take care in all cases to
demonstrate relevant wider reading and individual study.
Appropriate literary works may be chosen from any source; students need not restrict themselves to
works on the IB prescribed book list (PBL) for the language of the essay.
The following examples of titles for group 1 extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 35
Group 1
English: “Religious imagery in Wuthering Heights” is better than “Religion in the Brontës”.
English: “A comparison of the presentation of racial conflict in one work by James Baldwin and one work
by Richard Wright” is better than “Racial conflict in the works of American writers”.
French: “The portrayal of women in the works of Zola” is better than “The works of Zola”.
French: “Existentialism in Les Mains Sales and Les Mouches by Sartre” is better than “What is existentialism?”.
Spanish: “The treatment of social conflict in La Busca by Pío Baroja” is better than “Social conflict in
modern literature”.
Treatment of the topic
Literary works often address, for example, philosophical, political or social questions. However, the major#p#分页标题#e#
focus of the essay should be the literary treatment of such questions. The literary works should not be a
pretext for interdisciplinary study and should not be treated simply as documentary evidence in a
discussion of philosophical, political or social issues. Students should always consider how the texts work
as literature, dealing with aspects such as the effects they achieve, the devices they use and the way they
are written.
Students should not use the extended essay solely as a vehicle for their own thoughts but, after providing
careful analysis of the author’s ideas, should present their personal views on the way the author has
treated the subject. There should be a compromise between building on the wisdom of more experienced
critics and introducing new personal elements. The mere reiteration of the views of established literary
critics will not result in a successful extended essay.
When writing the essay, students must bear in mind that any narrative and/or descriptive material included
should be directly relevant to the critical analysis. A precis of the student’s reading is not sufficient.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. A research question that is too narrow or too obvious will
normally be deemed to be one that does not lend itself to systematic investigation in an extended essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The context should be established succinctly and should not be an excuse for padding out an essay with
a lengthy account of the historical or biographical context of a literary text. Instead, the introduction
should focus on the research question and the student’s reasons for choosing it. In some cases, students
may be able to say how it relates to existing knowledge on the topic but, since they cannot be expected
to know the whole range of secondary writing on major texts, it is sufficient for them to state briefly why
they have chosen their particular research question and what they think it has to offer.
36 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Group 1
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources includes, in the first place, the primary texts being studied (and, possibly, other
writings by the author(s) in question, such as essays, journals and letters) and, less importantly, secondary
sources such as published criticism on those texts. The proper planning of an essay should involve
interrogating secondary sources in light of the research question, so that the views of critics are used to
support the student’s own argument, and not as a substitute for that argument. It may thus be helpful
for a student to challenge a statement by a critic instead of simply agreeing with it. In a literary context,#p#分页标题#e#
the data gathered is principally the evidence the student finds in the primary text(s) to support the
argument of the essay. If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and
circumspectly in full awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The topic studied here is principally the primary text(s) that is/are the focus of the essay. The quality of
the student’s understanding of the primary text(s) is the main concern. The use of secondary sources is
not an essential requirement: this may be helpful in the case of classic texts, enabling discussion to start
at a higher level, but it should not replace the student’s personal engagement with the primary text(s).
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. Straightforward description of a literary text through plot summary or narration
of the action does not usually advance an argument and should generally be avoided (although, where
a little-known text is under discussion, a brief description may be appropriate).
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Appropriate application of analytical and evaluative skills here is the use of persuasive analysis and
argument to support a personal interpretation. Second-hand interpretations that are derived solely from
secondary sources will lose marks under this criterion, as will purely descriptive essays that list examples
of literary motifs but fail to analyse them.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
There is no single acceptable style for essays, which may be well-written in different ways—with, for
example, different degrees of personal emphasis, some writers using the first person and others preferring
a more impersonal mode of expression. Clarity and precision of communication in a group 1 essay includes
the correct use of language.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion refers to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or do
not give references/citations for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of
the required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than#p#分页标题#e#
satisfactory (maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum
level 1).
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 37
Group 1
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents the three required elements, not on the quality
of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
This criterion allows examiners to reward work that shows initiative, creativity and insight, even if the
essay does not achieve the highest standard overall. Routine essays on well-worn topics will not score
highly under this criterion.
38 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Group 1
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
A group 2 extended essay is intended for students who are studying a second modern language. Students
may not write a group 2 extended essay in a language that they are offering as a language A1 for their
diploma.
A group 2 extended essay provides students with the opportunity to develop their awareness and
knowledge of the language studied, and their understanding of the culture concerned. This is achieved
by enabling students to pursue their interest in the language through research based on texts (taken to
be any meaningful piece of spoken or written language, for example, an article, a book, a play, a poem)
or on specific cultural artifacts (such as works of fine art or architecture, films, radio or television
programmes, or popular music).
The extended essay must be written in the language for which it is registered (the target language). It
must be focused on matters related to the target culture.
The extended essay is a research essay and the assessment criteria emphasize the importance of research
skills rather than linguistic proficiency. Although a certain level of ability in the language is obviously
desirable in order to undertake a group 2 extended essay, fluency is neither a prerequisite nor a guarantee
of success. In fact, students who are fluent in the language but who do not demonstrate the required
research skills will definitely achieve a lower mark than students who are less fluent but who fulfill the
other assessment criteria.
Choice of topic
As indicated in the ”Overview” section, a group 2 extended essay aims to develop students’ knowledge
and understanding of the target language and culture. Any proposed topic that will not further that aim
should be rejected. The essay should consist of the study of an issue in one of three categories: language,
culture and society, or literature. Combinations of these are also permissible. Each category has specific#p#分页标题#e#
requirements that are described in this section. In addition, students should ensure that their topic:
· is worthy of investigation. For example, “Does tourism have a future in Switzerland?” or “Is the wine
industry an important source of income for France?” would be too trivial for an essay of 4,000 words.
Details—subject specific
Group 2
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 39
· is not too broad and allows for an effective treatment within the word limit. Topics such as “Racism
in France”, “The theatre of the absurd”, or “A history of the French language” would need to be given
a sharper focus.
· provides them with an opportunity to develop an argument and to demonstrate critical analysis and
personal judgment rather than just knowledge. Topics that are merely descriptive or narrative, or
that only summarize secondary sources (such as “French cheeses”, “The Provence region”, “The events
of May 1968 in Paris”), should be avoided.
In each category the examples given are for guidance only.
Category 1: language
The essay should be a specific analysis of the language (its use, structure and so on) normally related to
its cultural context or a specific text.
Language French
Topic Language laws in Quebec
To what extent has Bill 101 contributed to increasing the prevalence of
the French language in Quebec?
Research question
An investigation into the effect of Bill 101 on the status of the French
language in Quebec.
Approach
Language Japanese
Topic Foreign words (gairaigo) in Japanese
Research question Do young people use more words of foreign origin than older people?
A survey of younger people and older people. Results are compared for
knowledge of foreign words, frequency of their use and attitude towards
their use.
Approach
Language Spanish
Alternative use of the forms “vos” and “usted” in the Spanish of the Rio
de la Plata (River Plate) region
Topic
To what extent have differences between formal and informal usage
disappeared from the language used in the Rio de la Plata region?
Research question
An investigation into the language of young people from Buenos Aires
in the Rio de la Plata region in a range of communicative situations.
Approach
Category 2: culture and society
A: essays of a sociocultural nature with an impact on the language
The essay should be an analysis of a cultural nature that describes the impact of a particular issue on the
form or use of the language.
40 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Group 2
Language French
Topic Language and feminism
Should feminine forms of more job titles be created in French to reflect#p#分页标题#e#
shifting gender roles?
Research question
An examination of the linguistic and sociological arguments for and
against the feminization of more job titles in French.
Approach
Language Japanese
Topic Language for family members
Does Japanese need new words to describe non-traditional family
relationships as society changes?
Research question
A commentary on how the use of the words "shujin" and "kanai" have
changed, together with an examination of the social factors that may
require new linguistic terms for family relationships to be created.
Approach
Language Spanish
Topic Language and discrimination
To what extent does the language used by groups of young students
from a secondary school in Buenos Aires reflect racial discrimination?
Research question
A sociolinguistic investigation into the way language used by young
people reflects attitudes of discrimination present in contemporary
society.
Approach
B: essays of a general cultural nature based on specific cultural artifacts
The essay should be an analysis of a more general cultural nature but specific to a country or community
where the language is spoken. Topics that are too broad and could apply to many cultures (like
globalization, the death penalty or eating disorders) are inappropriate.
Essays of a general cultural nature must be based on specific cultural artifacts. Cultural artifacts in this
context are understood to include a wide variety of phenomena, ranging from works of fine art to
newspapers, magazines and cartoons, to films, television programmes and popular music.
Language French
Topic Social criticism in the songs of MC Solaar
Research question What is the nature of MC Solaar’s rap critique of modern French society?
Approach An investigation into the thematic content of MC Solaar’s songs.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 41
Group 2
Language Japanese
Topic Adverts in the Japanese media
How and why do Japanese advertisers use such a high proportion of
non-Japanese models in advertising?
Research question
An analysis of adverts targeted at the youth market seen over a one-month
period, together with an analysis of how these are targeted, and possible
reasons why the images used are chosen.
Approach
Language Spanish
Topic Representation of women in tango
Research question Which roles do women play in tango lyrics?
A critical and thematic analysis of a corpus of tango lyrics to reveal female
roles.
Approach
Category 3: literature
The essay should be an analysis of a literary type, based on a specific work or works of literature exclusively
from the target language. In the case of a comparison of texts, all texts must originally have been written#p#分页标题#e#
in the target language.
Language French
Topic Haitian politics as depicted in works by Dany Laferrière and Gary Victor
Does Dany Laferrière in Pays sans chapeau share the same point of view
on Haitian politics as Gary Victor in La Piste des sortilèges?
Research question
An investigation into the similarities between the ways these two writers
treat this theme.
Approach
Language Japanese
Topic Pastoral references in Kenji Miyazawa
Research question What role does the natural world play in Chumon no ooi ryoriten?
A commentary on the literary devices used by the author, together with
the effect these have on the work.
Approach
Language Spanish
Topic Fictionalization of history in Abel Posse’s novels
How does Abel Posse construct an imaginary history in his novel El largo
atardecer del caminante?
Research question
A textual analysis to reveal the narrative techniques used by the author
to make the plot contrast with the order of chronological events.
Approach
42 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Group 2
Treatment of the topic
The student should demonstrate an understanding of the issues raised by the research question and
offer an objective, balanced analysis of these issues. The essay must be presented as a coherent argument,
supported by relevant examples. Essays that are simply descriptive are unlikely to achieve a high mark.
In the case of an essay of a general cultural nature, the student should focus on, and research, what makes
the topic specific and unique to the country or countries concerned. The student may draw relevant
comparisons with another culture, if appropriate. However, it is essential that the focus remains on the
culture of the language concerned. The purpose of comparisons is to shed light on the specific cultural
issues raised by the research question of the essay.
Students may choose to analyse texts in a detailed literary fashion, or they may use literary texts as a
means of exploring the target language or its culture and society.
Whenever questionnaires have been used or statistics presented, the student must show an understanding
of the results and be able to interpret them with reference to the issue. A copy of any questionnaires or
surveys should be included as an appendix.
If photographs and/or illustrations have been used, they should be labelled, explained and justified in
the context of the topic.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research topic can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be presented
as a statement or proposition for discussion. It must:
· be specific and sharply focused
· be stated clearly early on in the essay
· fit in one of the categories (language, culture and society, or literature), or be a combination of these.#p#分页标题#e#
If the topic does not meet the requirements of one of the three possible categories (for example, if an
essay of a general cultural nature is not based on specific cultural artifacts), a maximum of level 1 is
awarded. If the research question is not related to the target language/culture/literature, level 0 is awarded.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction of the essay should be brief. It should focus on the research question and how it relates
to existing knowledge of the subject. The student’s personal experience or particular opinion is rarely
relevant here.
For category 1 (language) and category 2 (culture and society) essays, the introduction should make clear
how the chosen topic is specific or of special interest to the target culture.
For category 3 (literature) essays, lengthy accounts of the historical or biographical context of a literary
text should be avoided, as they usually do not help to explain the significance of a topic in a satisfactory
manner.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 43
Group 2
Criterion C: investigation
Students must use authentic sources, mainly written in the target language. In the case of literature-based
essays, all texts must have originally been written in the target language. Literary quotations must also
be in the target language of the essay (that is, taken from the original works and not from translations).
Students are encouraged to look critically at the secondary sources that they read. The proper planning
of an essay should involve interrogating secondary sources in light of the research question, so that the
views of critics are used to support the student’s own argument, and not as a substitute for that argument.
It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge a statement by a critic instead of simply agreeing with
it.
For category 3 (literature) essays, the relevant information to support the argument of the essay should
mainly come from the primary text (although consulting a range of secondary sources may also be
helpful).
If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students must demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the topic chosen, together with its context:
historical, social and cultural, as well as academic.
For category 1 (language) and category 2 (culture and society) essays, this knowledge should be based
at least partially on primary sources. (Primary sources are specific cultural artifacts, data and interviews.
Secondary sources are textbooks, published criticism, articles and so on.)
For category 3 (literature) essays, the quality of the student’s understanding of the primary text(s) is the
main concern.#p#分页标题#e#
Where the topic of the essay is not related to the target language/culture/literature, level 0 is awarded.
Where the topic of the essay is not convincingly related to the target language/culture/literature, level 1
is the maximum that may be awarded.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity.
For category 1 (language) and category 2 (culture and society) essays, a mere compilation of facts or a
description of events does not suffice.
For category 3 (literature) essays, students should be aware that straightforward description of a literary
text through plot summary or narration of the action does not usually advance an argument and should
generally be avoided (although, where a little-known text is under discussion, a brief description may be
appropriate).
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Appropriate application of analytical and evaluative skills here is the use of persuasive analysis and
argument to support a personal interpretation or point of view. Second-hand interpretations or viewpoints
that are derived solely from secondary sources will lose marks under this criterion, as will purely descriptive
or narrative essays.
44 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Group 2
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Clarity and precision of communication in group 2 essays includes the correct use of vocabulary, sentence
structure and grammar, as well as the selection of an appropriate register and style.
There is no single acceptable style for essays. They may be written with, for example, different degrees
of personal emphasis, some writers using the first person and others preferring a more impersonal mode
of communication. Whether a style is appropriate or not depends on the common practice in each
different language or culture.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).#p#分页标题#e#
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
The abstract should be written in the language of the extended essay. Elements such as personal
information about the student and his or her reasons for choosing the topic should not be included in
the abstract.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in group 2 essays include the choice of topic and
research question, and locating and using a wide range of sources, including some that may have
been little used previously or generated for the study (for instance, transcripts of oral interviews).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Creativity: In group 2 essays, this includes qualities such as inventive approaches to linguistic, cultural
or literary analysis, and new approaches to popular topics.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 45
Group 2
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in biology provides students with an opportunity to apply a range of skills while
researching a topic of personal interest in the field of biology. The nature of an extended essay in biology
is characterized by a particular biological emphasis within the more general context of a scientific
investigation.
Choice of topic
It is important that the extended essay has a clear biological emphasis and is not more closely related to
another subject. Biology is the science that deals with living organisms and life processes. A biology
extended essay should, therefore, incorporate biological theory and emphasize the essential nature of
this subject.
Although similar assessment criteria apply to all extended essays in the experimental sciences, for a
biology extended essay, the topic chosen must allow an approach that distinctly relates to biology. Where
a topic can be approached from different viewpoints, the treatment of the material must be clearly
biological. For example, an extended essay in an interdisciplinary area such as biochemistry will, if
registered as a biology extended essay, be judged on its biological content, not its chemical content.
Essays that deal with human diseases represent a particular case in point, as these can often be dealt#p#分页标题#e#
with from a number of perspectives (such as biological, medical, social or economic). In particular, such
essays should avoid an overly medical treatment and should focus on biological aspects of the disease
rather than on diagnosis and treatment.
Some topics are unsuitable for investigation because of ethical issues. Investigations that are based on
experiments likely to inflict pain on, or cause unnecessary stress to, living organisms are not appropriate
for submission. Investigations that are likely to have a harmful effect on health (for example, culturing
micro-organisms at or near body temperature), or those which may involve access to, or publication of,
confidential medical information, are also not appropriate.
Some topics may be unsuitable for investigation because of safety issues. Experiments in which the
student uses toxic or dangerous chemicals, carcinogenic substances or radioactive materials should be
avoided unless adequate safety apparatus and qualified supervision are available. Other topics may be
unsuitable because the outcome is already well known and documented in standard textbooks.
The following examples of titles for biology extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
Details—subject specific
Biology
46 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
· “The effect of detergent toxicity on soil bacteria” is better than “Detergents in the environment”.
· “A study of malnourished children in Indonesia and the extent of their recovery after a period of
supervised improved nutrition” is better than “Malnutrition in children”.
· “A study of the effect of differing pH levels on the growth of Phaseolus vulgaris” is better than “The
effect of acidity on plant growth”.
· “The competitive and evolutionary nature of the symbiotic relationship in Paramecium bursaria” is
better than “Symbiosis in animals”.
· “The effect of banana peel on seed germination” is better than “Factors that affect the germination
of seeds”.
· “Gel electrophoresis: The construction of an apparatus and the separation of proteins in heat-treated
cow's milk” is better than “Uses of the gel electrophoresis technique”.
The topic chosen for study should be presented in the form of a research question, followed by a statement
of intent outlining the research approach to be used in answering the question. In this way, the approach
to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some examples of this could be the following.
Topic The distribution and growth of lichens on urban pavements#p#分页标题#e#
How are the distribution and growth of lichens affected by sulfur dioxide
and ozone levels in the atmosphere?
Research question
Thalus diameter and population density data is collected from selected
sites in different parts of the city. This data is then correlated with
published data on the levels of SO2 and O3.
Approach
Topic The effectiveness of commercial antibacterial cleaning agents
Are commercially available antibacterial cleaning agents effective at
controlling the growth of E. coli on nutrient agar under laboratory
conditions?
Research question
Pure strain E. coli are grown on nutrient agar plates under controlled
conditions. Filter paper discs soaked in samples of the antibacterial agents
are placed on the agar plates and the zone of exclusion is measured and
compared.
Approach
Topic Altitude and physical fitness
Can a programme of training at high altitude have an impact on the
fitness of an athlete?
Research question
Using a digital heart-rate monitor, pre- and post-exercise heart rates and
recovery times are measured for four athletes. These athletes then carry
out a programme of training at 2,500 metres above sea level, after which
heart-rate and recovery time data is once again collected. The pre- and
post-training data is analysed and compared to published data.
Approach
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 47
Biology
Topic Urease from soy beans
Which method of extraction and which temperature conditions give the
best levels of urease activity?
Research question
The enzyme is extracted from dried soy beans using three different
methods, and the activity of the extract is measured and compared to a
standard. Urease activity is measured by noting the time taken for a
standard urea solution, with phenolphthaline indicator, to turn pink in
the presence of the enzyme extract.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
Students should point out early in the essay how the research question was arrived at and, if appropriate,
how it was narrowed down, by briefly outlining related aspects that are not being considered in the
essay. Students should be encouraged to formulate one or more hypotheses based on the research
question. A single well-formulated question may give rise to a small number of precise hypotheses.
Essays in biology may be based on data collected by the student through experimentation, survey,
microscopic observations, biological drawing, fieldwork or some other appropriate biological approach.
Alternatively, essays may be based on data or information obtained from literature, ideally from primary
sources, and manipulated or analysed in an original way by the student. Essays that simply restate facts
or data taken directly from the sources are of little value. Whichever approach is chosen, the student#p#分页标题#e#
must ensure that sufficient resources, in the form of data and information, can be obtained in order to
allow the topic to be effectively researched.
Essays that involve practical work carried out in the laboratory, or fieldwork, should include a clear and
concise description of the experimental procedure. Students should attempt to specify how the research
approach and methodology were decided, and show any approaches that were considered and rejected.
Ideally, students should carry out the research for the essay solely under the direction of a school
supervisor. Some of the best essays have been written by students investigating relatively simple
phenomena using standard school apparatus, and this approach is to be encouraged. Regardless of
where, or under what circumstances, the research is carried out, students must provide evidence in the
essay of their personal contribution to the research approach and to the selection of the methods used.
Essays based on research carried out by the student at a research institute or university, under the guidance
of an external supervisor, must be accompanied by a covering letter outlining the nature of the supervision
and the level of guidance provided.
Generating and presenting data should not be an end in itself; analysis using appropriate scientific
techniques is essential. The main body of the essay should consist of an argument or evaluation based
on the data or information presented. Here, the student should point out the significance of any graphs,
tables or diagrams. Since this is often the longest single section of the essay, it is essential that it is well
structured and has an obvious logical progression. A clear structure can be imposed on this section by
dividing it into numbered and headed paragraphs. This evaluation should show an understanding of the
results and an appreciation of their significance in light of the literature that has been consulted.
Students should provide some explanation of anomalies or unexpected outcomes but this should not
form a major part of the discussion. If necessary, modifications to hypotheses presented earlier in the
essay should be proposed and a research approach for testing these should be suggested. Some
assessment of the outcomes of the research in a future or wider context should be made.
48 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Biology
Students must be encouraged to undertake a critical evaluation of the work they have done. In this
analysis, the student should describe and explain the limitations imposed on the research by factors such
as the suitability and reliability of the sources accessed, accuracy and precision of measuring equipment,
sample size, validity and reliability of statistics. Biological limitations should be considered, such as those
arising from the problem of repeatability and control when using living material, as well as the difficulties#p#分页标题#e#
of generalizing from research based on a single type of organism or environment.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
In a biology extended essay, the research question is best stated in the form of a question. The research
question should not be understood as a statement of the topic but rather as a precisely formulated
question that the research will attempt to answer. For example, a statement of the topic of an essay might
be “Factors that affect bacterial growth in agar plate cultures”; the research question based on this topic
could be “How are the growth rates of three strains of E. coli affected by temperature?”. The research
question can then be used to formulate a hypothesis, or hypotheses, which can be tested.The research
question should be identified clearly and set out prominently in the introduction. A broad statement of
the topic of the essay or a statement of the hypothesis is not sufficient on its own to meet the requirement
for a research question in a biology extended essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The purpose of the introduction is to set the research question into context. It is usually appropriate to
include the general background biological theory required to understand how the research question has
arisen. Students are not expected to explain basic biology forming part of the Diploma Programme
biology course, but they are expected to be able to show that they fully understand it and can apply it
correctly. Some research questions may require background from other disciplines. This should be kept
to a minimum, as the essay will be judged on its biological content.
Criterion C: investigation
The way in which the investigation is written will depend very much on whether or not the essay is based
on experimental work performed by the student. For essays that are based on data taken from written
sources, the student should explain clearly how the data has been selected and should comment on its
reliability. For experimental work, sufficient information on the methodology should be provided to allow
the work to be repeated. Students should demonstrate that they understand the theory behind any
techniques or apparatus used. They are also expected to show an awareness of any limitations or
uncertainties inherent in their techniques and apparatus.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
A biology extended essay should be based on specific, relevant and clearly defined aspects of the biological
study of living organisms. The information and ideas should be presented in a way that provides evidence
that these have been understood and applied correctly. Material extracted from the sources should be
referenced and incorporated into the main body of the essay in a way that demonstrates the student’s
understanding.#p#分页标题#e#
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Biology
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Because of the nature of the subject, students writing a biology extended essay must make a special
effort to maintain a reasoned, logical argument that focuses on the research question. Essays that attempt
to deal with a large number of variables are unlikely to be focused and coherent. A clear and logical
argument can be achieved by making repeated reference to the research question and to the hypotheses
derived from it. An assessment of the extent to which the hypotheses are supported, or the question is
answered, by the data or information accessed should form part of the argument.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
The stated conclusion(s) must be based on the data, information and/or evidence presented in the essay.
The data must be analysed and presented in such a way that the argument leading to the conclusion is
supported and clarified. Tables of raw data will generally not achieve this on their own. Raw data must
be analysed, processed and presented in a way that relates clearly and directly to the central argument
of the essay. Where appropriate, this analysis should allow for an assessment of the validity of the
hypothesis. Errors and uncertainties arising from the methodology, instruments and/or techniques should
be analysed and critically evaluated.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students writing in biology need to show a mastery of, and fluency in, the use of appropriate terminology.
At the same time, students need to avoid excessive use of jargon. Any technical terms that are used
should be explained and the student must demonstrate an understanding of these terms by using them
appropriately within the text. The student must try to maintain a consistent linguistic style throughout
the essay.
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion should relate directly to the research question and should point out the main findings
of the research. Biological research often reveals unexpected outcomes and these should be pointed
out, even if they were not part of the original plan. The original research question may not be fully
answered by the investigation. In these cases, the student should point out unresolved issues and make
suggestions as to how these might be further investigated.
Criterion I: formal presentation
Biological investigations often require the support of referenced material, not only in the form of text or
data, but also as diagrams or drawings. Care must be taken to supply references for illustrations taken
from sources. Students must avoid the temptation to supply illustrations for their own sake. Illustrative
material should only be included if it enhances the argument or supplies information that cannot be#p#分页标题#e#
easily provided in another way. Original photographs, photocopies or downloaded images that are not
labelled or put into the context of the investigation are unlikely to enhance the essay.
Biological investigations often result in large quantities of raw data. Large tables of raw data are best
included in an appendix. Processed data that is central to the argument of the essay should be included
in the body of the essay, as close as possible to its first reference.
Criterion J: abstract
For a biological investigation, the abstract must include the research question and a conclusion that
directly relates to the research question. In addition, the description of how the research was conducted
must include a description of the methodology and the scope of the study.
50 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Biology
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in biology essays include the choice of topic and
research question, and the use of novel or innovative approaches to address the research question.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research and thorough reflection, and by well-informed and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Originality and creativity: These will be apparent by clear evidence of a personal approach backed
up by solid research and reasoning.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 51
Biology
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in business and management provides students with an opportunity to carry out
in-depth research in an area of personal interest relating to business and management. This is likely to
be in the context of the Diploma Programme business and management course, but students may also
want to consider issues that fall outside the scope of this. For example, they may want to undertake a
detailed investigation into work relating to a specific regional/national context, or perhaps practical
applications relating to the work of a particular management theorist. Whichever research area is chosen,
it should be firmly rooted in the realms of accepted business and management theory.
The extended essay provides students with an opportunity to develop research skills by reviewing business
theory, concepts and principles, and critically analysing how these have been put into practice in the
business world and the resultant impact on business activity. This will involve broad and detailed research
using a range of sources. Excessive reliance on a single type of source, such as a company’s annual report,#p#分页标题#e#
is unlikely to give students sufficient scope or breadth in their analysis of the research question. The
extended essay requires the application of business theory, tools and techniques to produce a coherent
and structured analytical essay that effectively addresses the research question.
Choice of topic
Students should undertake an extended essay that uses the core principles of business and management
as a basis for researching a particular topic. In their choice of topic, students are strongly advised to
ensure they develop a research question that enables them to carry out relevant research and apply
business theory, tools and techniques. It is important that the research question is sufficiently focused
to allow adequate treatment within the word limit.
The following examples of titles for business and management extended essays are intended as guidance
only. The pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather
than broad topics (indicated by the second title).
· “What motivates employees? Can Herzberg’s motivation theory help explain the improvement in
productivity at XYZ Ltd?” is better than “Have motivational techniques benefited XYZ Ltd?”.
· “How significant has the contribution of Just-in-Time production been in improving efficiency in the
textile industry?” is better than “How effective are Just-in-Time production techniques?”.
· “Why has the practice of publishing environmental audits been adopted more widely in Country X
than in Country Y?” is better than “Why do firms publish environmental audits?”.
Details—subject specific
Business and management
52 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
The topic may be chosen because of an interest in issues raised in the classroom, aspects of a student’s
own experience, or current events. The choice and treatment of the topic must, however, ensure that
the student can address all the assessment criteria. An essay that is purely descriptive must be avoided:
analysis and evaluation are critically important.
It may help in achieving this if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a
research question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which methodology is going to be
used in answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further
clarified. Some examples of this could be as follows.
Topic Operations management
To what extent has the introduction of Total Quality Management (TQM)
improved quality at ABC Ltd?
Research question
A review of how quality management techniques have changed with the
introduction of TQM. Relevant indicators are selected for measuring
quality and the data for ABC Ltd is collected. The way in which ABC Ltd#p#分页标题#e#
have adapted their approach to managing quality, and the impact of this
on the selected indicators, is analysed and evaluated.
Approach
Topic Growth strategies
How effective has the joint venture between ABC Ltd and UBI Ltd been
as a growth strategy?
Research question
A review from secondary sources of growth strategies available to a firm
and joint ventures specifically. Relevant indicators are selected to quantify
the impact of the joint venture on the growth of ABC Ltd and UBI Ltd.
Relevant data is collected from the two businesses, and the findings are
analysed and evaluated.
Approach
Topic Financial performance
Why has the market capitalization of XYZ Plc increased more than the
market capitalization of its competitor ABC Plc?
Research question
A review from secondary sources of factors affecting financial performance
and selection of variables that may contribute to differences in market
capitalization. Data is collected and a comparative analysis is made of
the findings.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
Students should use as the basis of their extended essay secondary data, supported, where appropriate,
by primary research. The sole use of secondary sources will allow students access to all levels of the
extended essay assessment criteria. (Note that this is the reverse of the approach required in the HL
internal assessment component of the business and management course, where primary research takes
precedence.) Students should apply the accepted theories, tools and techniques of the subject to the
topic/research question chosen. These may be applied to an organization, industry or market in a particular
region or country, or globally. Students should ensure that the treatment of the topic allows for an
analytical approach.
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Business and management
It is important that the approach to all aspects of the essay is directly related to the research question
and that the research carried out addresses the question. Topics researched should not be too broad in
scope. The development of the essay must be related to the question directly and must not include
information that is unnecessary. Strategic approaches should be encouraged and considered—for
example, the effect of new technologies and cultural, international and ethical implications.
If primary research is carried out in relation to an organization, there is a need for tact, sensitivity to other
people and respect of confidentiality.
A good extended essay will demonstrate the appropriate use and application of selected analytical tools,
often supported by statistical data to assist the discussion and evaluation.
Some examples of analytical tools are as follows.
· Ansoff’s Matrix
· Boston Matrix#p#分页标题#e#
· Break-even analysis
· Decision tree analysis
· Financial accounts and performance ratios
· Fishbone analysis
· PEST (LE) analysis
· Porter’s generic strategies and five forces
· Position maps
· Statistical tables/charts/diagrams
· SWOT analysis
Students must ask probing questions and look at all relevant factors when considering the information
obtained from their research. Information cannot always be accepted at face value. A critical approach,
in which the skills of analysis and evaluation are displayed, is essential. Students should indicate unresolved
questions, or new questions that have arisen from their study, in their conclusions.
An extended essay in business and management is a formal essay and, as such, should fully meet the
assessment criteria for the organization and formal presentation of an extended essay. In addition, it
should be remembered that a business and management essay must be written in an objective style
without personal bias. Observations and conclusions should be derived from the evidence and not based
on any preconceptions of the student.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the essay.
54 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Business and management
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be
presented as a statement, proposition or hypothesis for discussion. It must be specific and sharply focused.
Topics or questions that consider broad areas of business and management theory may limit the possibility
of effective treatment within the word limit and constrain performance on this criterion.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here. While it is important in the introduction to consider
the theoretical business context for the essay, it is not the place for a full review or explanation of that
theory. The introduction should consider why the question chosen is an important one for
businesses/organizations and/or the managers of those businesses/organizations, and, therefore, why
it is an important topic for investigation. The research question should be clearly set in a business and
management context.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic chosen.
Students should use secondary sources in the first instance. These may include the Internet, textbooks
and research literature/journals. They could also include materials sourced from a particular business or#p#分页标题#e#
organization whose area of business is related to the topic chosen (for example, market research
companies, industry analysts or individual business organizations). Statistical data may be valuable,
although this is likely to depend on the nature of the topic/research question chosen. Sources for this
might include the Internet, government departments, business research organizations or industry analysts.
Evidence can be conflicting and in need of explanation and analysis. The reliability of sources needs to
be examined, and relevant information clearly and systematically presented. If students make use of
Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full awareness of their potential
unreliability.
Where primary research is used, it must be carefully planned to ensure that it will enhance the value of
the research undertaken, and provide specific quantitative and qualitative analysis directly related to
the research question.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
This criterion requires students to show detailed knowledge and understanding of the topic being
researched, and its academic context. This means that they need to demonstrate relevant links between
the topic and relevant business theories and techniques. These interrelationships need to be explicitly
explained to reveal a clear knowledge and understanding. To demonstrate an appropriate level of
knowledge and understanding, it is likely that students will need to use a range of sources.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
To score highly on this criterion, students need to link the research question with the conclusion in a
clear, structured and logical way. A valid and persuasive argument needs to be developed in terms of
business and management in the context of the business theory used. This means that there should be
clear links that can easily be followed between the research question and the conclusion. These links
should be developed throughout the essay in a coherent, flowing and structured way that is valid and
persuasively presented.
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Business and management
To ensure reasoned argument, the essay should also demonstrate clear links between the data and
evidence presented, and the arguments developed from the data. Straightforward descriptive or narrative
accounts that lack these links are unlikely to advance a successful argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
To score highly on this criterion, students need to demonstrate a sophisticated application of analytical
and evaluative skills. This requires students to use the data and business theory they have considered
and to assess arguments relating to the various aspects of the topic under consideration. This assessment#p#分页标题#e#
should include a consideration of the relative value and importance of particular arguments in answering
the research question. The research question should help focus this analysis and ensure that students
are applying evaluative skills to make reasoned and supported judgments.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
This criterion requires clear and precise use of business language and terminology. This must be used
consistently throughout the essay and applied with consideration of the context of the arguments being
used.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat material from the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
The sources of all data used should be fully acknowledged and exact web site addresses and dates of
access given.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in business and management essays include the
choice of topic and research question, the nature and breadth of the theory chosen to help answer
the research question, and the breadth of research sources and imagination used in sourcing relevant
material/data.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated through the analytical
depth used to answer the research question, and the appropriateness of the business theories and
tools used.
56 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Business and management
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in chemistry provides students with an opportunity to investigate a particular aspect
of the materials of our environment. Such extended essays must be characterized by a particular chemical#p#分页标题#e#
emphasis within a more general set of research criteria.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured piece of writing that effectively addresses
a particular issue or research question and arrives at a particular, and preferably personal, conclusion.
Choice of topic
It is important that the extended essay has a clear chemical emphasis and is not more closely related to
another subject. Chemistry is the science that deals with the composition, characterization and
transformation of substances. A chemistry extended essay should, therefore, incorporate chemical
principles and theory, and emphasize the essential nature of chemistry, relating to the study of matter
and of the changes it undergoes.
Although the same assessment criteria apply to all extended essays, for an extended essay submitted in
chemistry the topic chosen must allow an approach that distinctly involves chemistry. Where a topic
might be approached from different viewpoints, the treatment of the material must be approached from
a chemistry perspective. For example, an extended essay in an interdisciplinary area such as biochemistry
will, if registered as a chemistry extended essay, be judged on its chemical content, not its biological
content.
The scope of the topic and the research associated with it should enable all the criteria to be addressed.
A good topic is one where the single research question is sharply focused and can be treated effectively
within the word limit. Perhaps the most important factor is the depth of treatment that can be given to
the topic by the student. Broad or complex survey topics (for example, investigations into health problems
caused by water pollution, chemotherapy for cancer treatment or the use of spectroscopy in chemical
analysis) will not permit the student to discuss conflicting ideas and theories, nor to produce an in-depth
personal analysis within the word limit.
Some topics may be unsuitable for investigation because of safety issues. For example, experiments
involving toxic or dangerous chemicals, carcinogenic substances or radioactive materials should be
avoided unless adequate safety apparatus and qualified supervision are available.
Details—subject specific
Chemistry
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 57
Other topics may be unsuitable because the outcome is already well known and documented in standard
textbooks, and the student may not be able to show any personal input. An example might be a study
of the reactions of the alkali metals with water as this is already covered by the syllabus. However, some
care does need to be exercised in deciding whether a topic is suitable or not; for example, previously,
the study of the allotropes of carbon might have been thought to be trivial but this would not be the
case today.
The following examples of titles for chemistry extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings#p#分页标题#e#
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “The ratio of the gases evolved at the positive electrode during the electrolysis of common salt
solution” is better than “Electrolysis of solutions”.
· “Spectrophotometric determination of trace amounts of lead in drinking water” is better than “Water
analysis”.
· “The effects of sugar-free chewing gum on the pH of saliva in the mouth after a meal” is better than
“Acid–base chemistry”.
· “How can the natural oxidant rutin be extracted and purified from the seed of the Chinese Scholartree?”
is better than “Extraction of natural products from plants”.
Moreover, it may help if the student further defines and refines the topic chosen for study in the form of
a research question or statement.
The ratio of the gases evolved at the positive electrode during the
electrolysis of common salt solution
Title
Is there a relationship between the concentration of aqueous sodium
chloride solution and the ratio of the amounts of oxygen and chlorine
gas that are evolved at the positive electrode during electrolysis?
Research question
Title The caffeine content of a cup of tea
Does the time it takes to brew a cup of tea using a specific commercial
brand of tea leaves significantly alter the amount of caffeine that is
dissolved in the drink?
Research question
Title Analysis of strawberry jellies by paper chromatography
The use of paper chromatography to determine whether strawberry jellies
obtained from 24 different countries in 5 different continents all contain
the same red dyes.
Research question
Treatment of the topic
An extended essay in chemistry may be based on literature, theoretical models or experimental data.
Whichever category or combination of categories is chosen, the student should ensure that sufficient
data is available for evaluation and that the topic can be researched accurately using locally available
resources.
58 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
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Students who choose to write an extended essay based on literature and/or surveys should ensure that
their extended essay clearly shows its chemical basis. Essays written at the level of a newspaper or news
magazine article are unlikely to achieve a high mark.
Since chemistry is an experimental science, students are strongly encouraged to undertake experimental
work as part of their research, although this is not compulsory. In order to place their research into the
appropriate context, students should research the area of the investigation before commencing any
experimental work. Where possible, they should consult original research using scientific journals, personal#p#分页标题#e#
communications and the Internet. Textbooks should never be the only source of information.
All essays involving experimental work undertaken by the student should include a clear and concise
description of the experimental work. Students should indicate clearly whether they have personally
designed the experiment, or give the source of an existing experiment method that they have used and
state how they have adapted and improved upon it. All essays must be supervised by a school supervisor.
Many of the best essays are written by students investigating relatively simple phenomena using apparatus
and materials that can be found in most school laboratories, and this approach is to be encouraged. If
the practical work is carried out in an industrial or university laboratory, the essay should be accompanied
by a letter from the external supervisor outlining the nature of the supervision and the level of guidance
provided. The school supervisor must be satisfied that the work described in the essay is genuine and
essentially that of the student.
Data collected from an experiment designed by the student is of little value unless it is analysed using
appropriate scientific techniques, evaluated and perhaps compared with appropriate models.
It is possible to produce an extended essay in chemistry in which the student has used data collected
elsewhere as the primary source. In such cases, the element of personal analysis and evaluation is extremely
important.
In any chemistry extended essay, students should be able to demonstrate that they understand the theory
underlying any experimental work and state any assumptions made. They should show an understanding
of the results obtained and be able to interpret them with reference to the research question posed. They
should be critical of inadequate experimental design, the limitations of the experimental method and
any systematic errors. Students should be encouraged to consider unresolved questions in their research,
and to suggest new questions and areas for further investigation in their conclusion. Throughout the
whole of the essay, students should emphasize clearly their own personal contribution.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Many research questions can be formulated as an actual question or questions. A typical example is:
“What gas is evolved when zinc is added to copper (II) sulfate solution and what factors affect its
formation?”. However, in chemistry extended essays it is perfectly reasonable to formulate the research
question as a statement or as a hypothesis rather than an actual question. “An analysis of the amount of
aluminium in three different brands of underarm deodorant by visible spectroscopy” and “The kinetics
of oxidation of iodide ions with hydrogen peroxide in acidic solutions” are two such examples where a#p#分页标题#e#
statement rather than a question is appropriate. Whichever way it is formulated, it should be identified
clearly as the research question and set out prominently in the introduction.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 59
Chemistry
Criterion B: introduction
The purpose of the introduction is to set the research question into context, that is, to relate the research
question to existing knowledge in chemistry. It is usually appropriate to include also the underlying
chemical theory required to understand how the research question has arisen. Some research questions
require some background knowledge that is not related to chemistry—for example, “Do the fossils found
in different strata of rocks at a particular location contain different amounts of sulfur?”. For the essay to
make sense, it would be important to state the ages of the rocks and give some geological background.
In such cases, only the essential non-chemistry information should be provided in the introduction, as
the essay will be marked on its chemical content. If it is necessary to include more non-chemistry (for
example, geological) information, then the appropriate place for it is the appendix.
Criterion C: investigation
The way in which the investigation is undertaken will depend very much on whether or not the essay
contains experimental work performed by the student. For non-experimental essays, students should
endeavour to show clearly how the data has been selected. They should distinguish between primary
sources (original scientific publications, personal communications, interviews) and secondary sources
(textbooks, newspaper articles, reviews), and show awareness of how reliable these sources are. For
experimental work, sufficient information should be provided so that the work could be repeated if
necessary by an independent worker. Students should make it clear which experiments they have designed
themselves and which they have altered, adapted or improved from existing methods.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students should show that they understand fully the underlying chemistry behind the context of their
research question and their subsequent investigation. They are not expected to explain basic chemistry
forming part of the Diploma Programme chemistry course, but they are expected to show that they fully
understand the relevant principles and ideas and can apply them correctly. They should also demonstrate
that they understand the theory behind any techniques or apparatus used.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument. A
good argument in chemistry will almost certainly include consideration and comparison of different
approaches and methods directly relevant to the research question. Straightforward descriptive or#p#分页标题#e#
narrative accounts that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
A thorough understanding of the reliability of all data used to support the argument should be shown.
Inadequate experimental design or any systematic errors should be exposed. The magnitude of
uncertainties in physical data should be evaluated and discussed. Approximations in models should be
accounted for and all assumptions examined thoroughly. Where possible, the quality of sources accessed
or data generated should be verified by secondary sources or by direct calculations.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Correct chemical terminology and nomenclature should be used consistently and effectively throughout
the extended essay. Relevant chemical formulas (including structural formulas), balanced equations
(including state symbols) and mechanisms should be included. The correct units for physical quantities
must always be given and the proper use of significant figures is expected.
60 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Chemistry
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion must be consistent with the argument presented and should not merely repeat material
in the introduction or introduce new or extraneous points to the argument. In chemistry, it is almost
always pertinent to consider unresolved questions and to suggest areas for further investigation.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the required
elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory (maximum
level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
The essay must not exceed 4,000 words of narrative. Graphs, figures, calculations, diagrams, formulas
and equations are not included in the word count. For experiments where numerical results are calculated
from data obtained by changing one of the variables, it is generally good practice to show one example
of the calculation. The remainder can be displayed in tabular or graphical form.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in chemistry essays include the choice of topic and#p#分页标题#e#
research question, and the use of novel or innovative approaches to address the research question.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research and thorough reflection, and by a well-informed and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Originality and creativity: These will be apparent by clear evidence of a personal approach backed
up by solid research and reasoning.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 61
Chemistry
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in classical Greek or Latin provides students with an opportunity to investigate in
depth non-trivial controversies of particular personal interest in the context of the ancient Greek or
Roman worlds.
Choice of topic
The chosen topic will normally focus on a non-trivial aspect of the language, literature or civilization of
the ancient Greek or Roman world, where scholarly opinion is divided.
Students may choose to focus either on linguistic features of classical Greek or Latin, or to investigate
some aspect of classical Greek or Latin literature, or of classical Greek or Roman culture. Usually, however,
since the language, literature and civilization are closely interwoven, it is appropriate to study the language
in the context of the literature and civilization, and literature and civilization as presented through the
classical Greek or Latin languages.
A topic should be rejected if it is interdisciplinary in nature, and/or not directly related to classical
languages, literature or civilization, or is too broad to be covered effectively within the word limit.
The following examples of titles for classical languages extended essays are intended as guidance only.
The pairings illustrate that controversial topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather
than non-controversial ones (indicated by the second title).
· “The opening of Thucydides’ history is (or is not) a valid model for subsequent historians to aspire
to” is better than “The purpose of Thucydides’ history is revealed by its opening”.
· “Does the Melian debate, as presented by Thucydides, reveal the true nature of Athenian democracy,
or does he present it as an atypical aberration?” is better than “How does Thucydides present the
Melian episode?”.
· “Catullus’ poetry is (or is not) autobiographical” is better than “Catullus’ love poetry”.
· “Cicero was (or was not) justified in executing Catiline” is better than “The Catilinarian conspiracy”.#p#分页标题#e#
· “Does the end of the Aeneid reveal that Virgil had lost any belief in the Augustan system he may have
had, or does such a view ignore important truths about the Roman world?” is better than “What is
the importance of the last scene of the Aeneid?”.
Details—subject specific
Classical Greek and Latin
62 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Treatment of the topic
The topic will normally be investigated by particular reference to appropriate texts and commentaries
or other source material such as works of art or architecture.
If the focus of the extended essay is linguistic, it is essential for the student to demonstrate an
understanding of the grammatical structure of the language and show how, for example, authors exploit
its features.
If the focus of the extended essay is on literature, the student should show an awareness of a work read,
at least partly, in the original Greek or Latin. The extended essay should reveal an understanding of the
ways in which the author exploits the language to create particular effects.
If the focus of the extended essay is on the ancient civilization concerned, it should show clear evidence
of substantial background reading and an awareness of the major historical and cultural features at work
in this setting. Links between the language, literature and culture should be identified and scrutinized.
The historical context of the extended essay should be established by means of appropriate references
to literature, art and archeological sources.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be appropriate to the particular subject in which the essay is registered. In
classical Greek and Latin, this means that it must focus on an aspect, usually a controversial one, of the
ancient Greek or Roman world. The research question must be clearly and precisely focused, and stated
in both the abstract and introduction of the essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance and context of the topic, why it is worthy of
investigation and, where appropriate, how the research question relates to existing knowledge. It should
not be used to present lengthy, irrelevant background material.
Criterion C: investigation
A well-planned investigation will consider carefully the range of resources available that are relevant to
the topic. Students should aim to make use of both primary and secondary sources where possible. The
data gathered should be the evidence found in the sources to establish the context and to support the
argument and conclusion of the essay. All material used from sources must be acknowledged in references.
If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full#p#分页标题#e#
awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
This criterion demands that the essay has a solid foundation of specific relevant knowledge, whose
meaning is understood by the student. This knowledge can then be analysed, and, on the basis of this
analysis, an argument can be formed and a conclusion to the research question reached.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument based on
specific details, to persuade the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts
that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
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Classical Greek and Latin
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students should analyse (that is, consider the meaning and importance of) the relevant material discovered
in their investigation to argue a case and reach a conclusion. Sources used in the research process, whether
by classical authors or modern commentators, should be carefully evaluated and their reliability assessed.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students are expected to be familiar with the vocabulary of classical studies and should provide definitions
of key terms. The language of the essay must be clear and unambiguous, and statements should be
specific and precise, avoiding sweeping generalizations and unsupported assertions. However, provided
that their meaning is clear, students who are not writing in their first language will not be disadvantaged.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous content. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract must consist of three elements: the research question (or hypothesis), the scope of the essay
(that is, what was investigated and how it was investigated) and the conclusion. An abstract is not a precis#p#分页标题#e#
of the topic.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in classical Greek and Latin essays include the
choice of topic and research question, and new approaches to popular topics (possibly achieved
through evaluating different historical explanations).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
64 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Classical Greek and Latin
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in computer science provides students with an opportunity to investigate a particular
aspect of computing and its implications for society and the world. Within this context, they can research
the latest developments and future possibilities in a subject that changes with increasing speed and is
continually breaking new barriers. There are many possible areas to be explored, each with a wealth of
topics: advances in hardware and software development, comparison of the efficiency of algorithms
designed to speed up data transmission or to encrypt data, network systems, computer control systems
and so on.
Choice of topic
It is important that the chosen topic and its treatment reflect a firm emphasis on computing. Students
must show that they have gained an understanding of the topic and the relevant theory and practices
of computer science.
It is also important that the work goes beyond a summary of journalistic views on a particular topic. It is
not sufficient for the student simply to describe new advances and developments in computing. Students
are expected to analyse their findings and consider the implications.
Often, the ethical and social effects of the topic chosen will be important and may well have a part within
the essay, for example, in the conclusion. However, an essay that makes these considerations a major
focus is not appropriate and would be better submitted as an information technology in a global society
(ITGS) essay. An in-depth analysis of trends and advances in computing should include aspects of the
theory of computer science, which would necessarily demonstrate a high degree of technical knowledge
and understanding.
Data for analysis may be generated from a program written by the student. This is often an appropriate
method of investigation but the code itself, and its development, will not be rewarded under the
assessment criteria. The extended essay is not in any way to be confused with the program dossier that#p#分页标题#e#
is completed as the internal assessment component for the computer science course. If the data analysed
is not directly related to computer science, the extended essay should be registered in another, more
relevant, subject.
The chosen topic may be inspired by a magazine article, an Internet site, one of the case studies published
in connection with computer science paper 2 examinations, a conversation or simply an idea that could
fall into one of the following areas of interest.
· Aspects of the current computer science syllabus that are not treated in depth
· Current aspects of computing that are set to change or be challenged in the near future
Details—subject specific
Computer science
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 65
· Future developments that are currently experimental but beginning to look possible
· Solutions to limitations that are evident in current hardware or software
· Comparisons between different computer systems that are actually in place
The topic chosen should allow the student to make a full appropriate analysis, putting forward his or her
own point of view. Historical aspects of computing do not lend themselves to this treatment. However,
there may sometimes be a place for summarizing developments that have occurred until now, to put
the topic in perspective or to use as a basis for predicting the future.
Availability of resources should be a consideration when deciding on a topic. The student should not
choose to investigate a complex computing topic for which they have little or no access to appropriate
background material and/or resources.
The following examples of titles for computer science extended essays are intended as guidance only.
The pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than
broad topics (indicated by the second title).
· “Comparison of symbolic algorithmic approach and fuzzy logic in constructing an expert system” is
better than “Artificial Intelligence”.
· “Has the increase in processing power diminished the need for complicated sorting algorithms?” is
better than “Sorting algorithms and processor speed”.
· “What level of data compression in music files is acceptable to the human ear?” is better than “Data
compression techniques”.
· “How secure is Secure Sockets Layer protocol?” is better than “Internet security”.
It may help for the student to start with a broad topic or area of interest, refine this further into a research
question and then add a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question.
Topic Advances in computer processing
Research question Will fuzzy logic replace binary logic in the near future?#p#分页标题#e#
An investigation into the current state of implementation of multi-state
logic and the differences between this and binary state logic.
Approach
Topic Networking system
Is wireless networking a feasible alternative to cabled networking within
a whole-city context?
Research question
A feasibility study of the hardware and communications needed to set
up a city-wide network in wireless and cabled systems.
Approach
It should be noted that a research question is not the only way of specifying the topic, but it does help
in the development of the essay as the student and supervisor can come back to the question as a
reference point.
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Computer science
Treatment of the topic
An extended essay in computer science is not intended as a vehicle to demonstrate programming skills.
These are demonstrated in the program dossier (the internal assessment requirement of the computer
science course). The extended essay is an opportunity for students to be creative in a different sphere—that
of independent, personal research.
While an extended essay may refer to a programming exercise, such as a compiler for a new language
designed by the student, the emphasis in such a case should be on the design, development and analysis
of the compiler and on language design. Some evaluation of the compiler in relation to those already
existing is also expected. Although program fragments may be included in the body of the extended
essay to support the design and the discussion, the full program code (including internal documentation)
should appear in an appendix as evidence. Each line of code that appears in the body of the essay should
count as two words when calculating the length of the essay, while any internal documentation of a
program fragment should be ignored.
Futuristic topics in computer science should be based on sound theory and projections of well-known
computer and information science authorities. Students are expected to support personal conclusions
by the theories presented. This is an area where students need to be particularly careful that the analysis
they apply to information gathered is their own independent analysis and that the information they use
is from reliable sources.
Students are likely to turn to the Internet for sources of information. When doing so, they need to verify
the reliability of sources and also ensure that they are not relying too heavily on these sources to collate,
rather than analyse, information. Students are expected to evaluate critically the resources consulted
during the process of writing the essay.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
Interpreting the assessment criteria#p#分页标题#e#
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be:
· specific and sharply focused
· appropriate to the particular area of computer science being explored
· centred on computer science and not on peripheral issues such as the history of computing or the
social implications of technology
· stated clearly early on in the essay.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 67
Computer science
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge, putting it into
context. Basic computing knowledge can be assumed and it is not expected that students write lengthy
sections explaining theory that is common knowledge or part of the syllabus of the computer science
course.
Criterion C: investigation
The range and type of sources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic
chosen. For example, if runs of a program are carried out to test an algorithm for efficiency against an
alternative one then the data must be adequate.
Any statistics collected should be reliable and relevant to the research question. It is also important to
consult a large number of sources. Particular care should be taken in such a rapidly changing area to
ensure that all sources (books, magazines and Internet sites) used are up to date.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The student is expected to be capable of coherently discussing the topic, hence demonstrating a sound
knowledge of computing within the chosen area and an ability to explain academic concepts to a degree
that shows a full understanding. The knowledge and concepts should go beyond those called for in the
current Computer science guide.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument or
experimentation to persuade the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts
that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
A computer science extended essay demands that the student applies logical, critical and creative thinking
to a specific topic, as well as showing an appreciation of the consequences arising from technological
development.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
The effective use of computer science terminology includes the appropriate use of technical vocabulary.
Layman terms for computer parts and systems should not be used.#p#分页标题#e#
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion. It should be evident from the conclusion that the student has
fully understood the implications of the topic and is able to make a clear, independent evaluation.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
68 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Computer science
Program code should generally be placed in an appendix. Where it needs to be included within the body
of the essay, each line of code should count as two words when calculating the length of the essay, while
any internal documentation of a program fragment should be ignored.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in computer science essays include using sources
other than the Internet and printed resources to gain information that could not have been found
otherwise.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well-informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Creativity: This can be shown in many ways, for example, by using an unusual but effective approach,
by taking a controversial, but credible, stance or by extrapolating an extra logical step when forming
a conclusion.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 69
Computer science
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in dance provides students with an opportunity to focus on a topic in dance of
particular interest to them. In consultation with the supervisor, the student should carefully choose a#p#分页标题#e#
topic of special interest, keeping in mind the availability of sources required to research it. The student
is encouraged to develop a plan and structure for the research before its commencement, then to proceed
in a disciplined and imaginative way to arrive at a logical, and preferably personal, conclusion.
Dance as expressive movement with intent, purpose and form that communicates through the body and
gesture of the dancer should be at the heart of an extended essay in dance. A particular dance or a
particular style of dance may be chosen as the core focus of the extended essay. Students should strive
for a coherent verbal analysis and interpretation of one or more dances in relation to the chosen research
question. Although the dance itself is of primary importance, consideration should be given to the role
of the dance, dance styles or traditions within their cultural context, in terms of their historical and current
practice, as well as their social, religious, political and/or intellectual significance.
Choice of topic
The first crucial stage in writing an extended essay is the choice of topic and the framing of a research
question. A research question (or a title) should imply the overall scope of the essay without unduly
restricting its development. The chosen topic may be inspired by one or several of the following areas
of interest. (Please note, this is not an exhaustive list but is intended for guidance only.)
· Aspects of the Diploma Programme dance course (for Diploma Programme dance students)
· Performances of dance
· Dance cultures and traditions that students encounter
· Personal contact with choreographers or arrangers of dances, and/or dancers
· Direct involvement in the making of dances
· Film, video, DVD or Internet dance presentations
· Personal interests/concerns about the field of dance
Students should note that the Diploma Programme dance course includes assessment components in
performance, composition and analysis, and world dance investigation. Those who choose to write an
extended essay in dance should focus on a research question that has no common ground with the
material of their world dance investigation.
Details—subject specific
Dance
70 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
The following examples of titles for dance extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “The influence of historic modern dance in the mid-20th century on the work of choreographer Lin
Hwai Min, artistic director of the Cloud Gate Dance Theatre (in Taiwan)” is better than “Modern
dance in Taiwan”.
· “The role of ritual in Afro-Caribbean dance in selected works of Katherine Dunham” is better than#p#分页标题#e#
“Ritual in Afro-Caribbean dance”.
· “The impact of Rudolph Nureyev on the style of male dancing in the Royal Ballet (of Britain)” is better
than “Male dancing in the Royal Ballet (of Britain)”.
· “The influence of Gregory Hines on the re-emergence of rhythm tap dance in the United States as a
theatrical dance form” is better than “Tap dance in the United States”.
Treatment of the topic
The structure of the extended essay is important to its success. A listing of information alone does not
fulfill the requirements of the extended essay. The essay should, therefore, express a reasoned argument
(hypothesis): a point of view that is presented logically.
When the research topic has been established, it is suggested that the student makes a research plan
that allows for some flexibility as the essay develops. The research plan should take account of what
information is available, or what might become available. The range of materials used will vary according
to the topic, but it is important that adequate sources are accessible, though not necessarily too easily
accessible. Sometimes the hunt for information can be part of the challenge and become part of the
essay itself.
The viewing of performances and participation in classes and/or workshops directly pertaining to the
chosen topic can be excellent primary sources for the investigation. If these opportunities are not available
to the student, then dance references in relevant film, video, DVD and Internet sources, as well as dance
notation and photographs of dance performances, are also considered primary sources. Interviews with
practitioners are also recognized as primary source material. It may be appropriate to include transcripts
of such interviews, or extracts from them, in an appendix to the essay, although students should be aware
that transcription is very time-consuming.
For an essay on dance, it may be that a pertinent statement from a dance practitioner quoted in a book
will be regarded as a primary source. However, absolute reliance on textbooks and the Internet is
discouraged and no extended essay in dance should be based exclusively on such sources. Textbooks
and the Internet should only be consulted if they encourage direct and personal involvement in the essay
topic, or if they stimulate original ideas and provide models for the structure of the essay.
It should be noted that access to film and videotape only became available in the early to mid 20th
century. Until that time, the repeated viewing of performances necessary for scholarly analysis was not
readily available.
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Dance
In dance, the student faces a challenge in researching specific works when live performance, videotape
and/or film recordings are not available. While the music notation system that first developed during the#p#分页标题#e#
Renaissance in Europe is still in broad use today, dance notation systems have radically changed and
earlier systems are not used other than for purposes of reconstruction. Furthermore, contemporary dance
notation systems are used predominantly by professional dance notators and ethnologists, and are not
accessible to most dancers and choreographers. In the dance field, these notation systems serve principally
archival and reconstruction purposes. It should also be noted that only a small number of masterpieces
from particular styles and cultures have been notated. However, ancient dance manuals do exist.
Because of the challenges stated previously regarding the limited availability of historical dance sources,
it is of great importance for students writing a dance extended essay to focus at least part of their research
on a present-day issue to allow primary sources to be consulted.
In summary, wherever possible, students should rely on primary sources to support the argument
(performances, film, video, DVD, notation, interviews) and use secondary sources (textbooks and the
Internet) as evidential support.
Students are expected to evaluate critically the sources consulted during the process of writing the essay,
by asking themselves the following questions.
· Which sources are vital to the support of my ideas, opinions and assertions?
· Which sources do not contribute to the analysis?
Many different approaches to the research question can be appropriate, for instance:
· use of primary sources (dance and dancers) and secondary sources (material about dance) in order
to establish and appraise varying interpretations
· analysis of sources (primary and secondary) to explore and explain particular aspects of dance
· use of primary source material for an analysis, with emphasis on a particular aspect of dance
· the collection and analysis of transmitted dance performances, leading to a comparison of similar
or different forms of dance.
It may further assist a student in refining the focus of his or her research if, beyond the topic and research
question, a succinct statement is produced that outlines the overall approach of the investigation. An
example of this might be the following.
Topic Lin Hwai Min’s choreography.
The influence of American modern dance of the mid-20th century on Lin
Hwai Min’s choreography.
Research question
Specific analysis of the choreography of Martha Graham and identification
of the influence her work had on the choreography of Lin Hwai Min,
artistic director of the Cloud Gate Dance Theatre (in Taiwan).
Approach
72 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Dance
Students should also demonstrate awareness of other issues surrounding the dance studied such as the
following.#p#分页标题#e#
· Do I show an awareness of the value and limitations of the dance I am studying through analysing
its origin and purpose?
· Do I show a consistently good understanding of dance in setting the research question into context
and addressing it fully and effectively?
Relevant outcomes of this analysis should be integrated into the student's argument.
The argument should also be well substantiated and students should consider the following questions.
· With what evidence do I support my comments and conclusions?
· Is this evidence relevant and well founded, and not based simply on my preconceptions?
Finally, an extended essay in dance is a formal essay, so students must pay very careful attention to the
requirements of the assessment criteria.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be specific, sharply focused and appropriate to the
particular area of dance being explored. It must also be centred on dance, and not on peripheral areas
such as biography and social issues. It must be stated clearly early on in the essay.
Note that larger-scale dance works or groups of pieces may limit the possibility of effective treatment
within the word limit.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge. It should be clear
and concise: it is not an opportunity to pad out the essay with preliminary statements of arguments that
will be restated fully in the body of the essay.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of sources available will be influenced by various factors but above all by the topic chosen.
Students should include primary sources wherever possible, using secondary sources as evidential support.
The proper planning of an essay should involve interrogating source material in light of the research
question, so that the views of other dancers and dance scholars are used to support the student’s own
argument, and not as a substitute for that argument. It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge a
statement by a dancer or dance scholar, in reference to the dance being studied, instead of simply
agreeing with it, where there is evidence to support such a challenge.
If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 73
Dance
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students are expected to demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the dance, dance styles or#p#分页标题#e#
traditions chosen within their cultural context, in terms of their historical and current practice, social,
religious, political and/or intellectual significance.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to present their essays as a logical development of an argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not
usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students should convey accurate and consistent analysis and evaluation of the movement qualities and
aesthetic and/or cultural intentions of the dance work(s).
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
There should be evidence of familiarity with, and the accurate and effective use of, dance terminology.
Some dance forms, such as ballet and East Indian dance, have particular words to describe movement
and movement phrases. The meaning of these terms needs to be made clear in the essay.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in dance essays include the choice of topic and
research question, locating and using a range of sources, including some that may have been little
used previously or generated for the study (for instance, transcripts of oral interviews).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well-informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.#p#分页标题#e#
· Creativity: In dance essays, this includes qualities such as new and inventive approaches to dance
analysis, new approaches to “well-worn” or popular topics, or attention to new topics and questions.
74 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in design technology provides students with an opportunity to undertake in-depth
research into the processes involved in the design and development of products or systems, and to make
an assessment of their impact on individuals and society at large.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured piece of writing that effectively addresses
a particular issue or research question and arrives at a particular, and preferably personal, conclusion.
Absolute reliance on textbooks and the Internet is discouraged and no extended essay in design technology
should be based exclusively on such sources.
Choice of topic
The chosen topic must be clearly concerned with issues relating directly to the subject. Where the topic
may be approached from different viewpoints, the treatment must be approached from a design
technology perspective. Students are expected to be familiar with the design cycle, as clarified in the
current Design technology guide.
Students are encouraged to select a topic that is appropriate to their interests and abilities, and the
resources available. They should avoid topics of a purely historical nature that merely document the
development of a product or technology.
Essays may focus on systems design rather than a specific product, for example:
· investigating the labelling of chemicals in transit, from the point of view of provision for dealing with
accidents
· investigating and implementing a system for reducing food wastage in a school/college canteen
· evaluating the feasibility of a combined heat and power scheme for a local community.
When choosing a topic for a design technology essay, students should start by exploring appropriate
design contexts. For example, it may be worth considering:
· artifacts that do not work properly or seem wasteful of resources
· the needs of particular user groups such as the elderly, infirm or disabled
· new technologies and how they might influence or combine with existing technologies.
It is essential that the topic chosen is appropriate for a design technology extended essay and not merely
a review of a technological product or technological development.
Details—subject specific
Design technology
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 75
The following examples of titles for design technology extended essays are intended as guidance only.#p#分页标题#e#
Moreover, it may help if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could be as follows.
Topic Ergonomic design of telephones for the physically impaired
How have ergonomic factors been considered in the design of a new
telephone for physically impaired people?
Research question
An essay that considers how ergonomics can be used to improve the
design of a new telephone.
Approach
Topic Bicycle design
Has the introduction of new materials improved the performance of
modern racing bicycles?
Research question
An essay that examines the use of new materials in the design of bicycles
and their components.
Approach
Topic Automated textile production
Does an automated textile process provide better-quality products than
a mechanized process?
Research question
Approach An investigation into a specific automated textile production process.
Treatment of the topic
An extended essay in design technology may be based on literature, surveys or experiments. However,
since design technology is an experimental science, many students will wish to base their essay on
practical/experimental work, although this is not compulsory. Practical activity may take the form of:
· experiments to test materials or evaluate performance
· modelling situations and products to assess effectiveness
· prototyping design solutions
· full realization and trialling of a design solution.
Because of the visual nature of design technology, it is anticipated that many essays will be significantly
enhanced by the addition of relevant graphical material.
In order to promote personal involvement in the extended essay, the use of primary sources that are
locally available should be encouraged wherever possible. Data should be collected from different sources
using a variety of appropriate methods, and then analysed using appropriate scientific and technological
techniques, otherwise it will be of little value. Data should only be included in the essay when directly
relevant to the chosen topic. It is important that the topic and research question reflect a firm emphasis
on design technology, and that they do not become directed towards another subject area.
76 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
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The topic should be treated at an appropriate level of study: not so specific or personalized that it has
no wider social, political or organizational aspects, nor so broad that there is little potential for taking or
stimulating action in the problem area.#p#分页标题#e#
Students should identify the key issues that emerge from the investigation and assess their significance
in relation to the original proposition or question. Above all, the essay must be based on an issue that
can be explored, and from which conclusions can be drawn and recommendations made.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be
presented as a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be specific, sharply focused and appropriate
to design technology. This means that it must relate to the nature of the subject and not be restricted
to a descriptive account of a technological or design topic. An appropriate research question allows the
essay to address comprehensively the design cycle. Whichever way it is formulated, it should be identified
clearly as the research question and set out prominently in the introduction.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance of the topic and why it is worthy of
investigation, and include relevant background details. The introduction should not be seen as an excuse
for padding out an essay with research details and should only include relevant information related to
the research question. For example, in an essay entitled “How has the impact of composite materials
affected the design of bicycle wheels?”, it would not be necessary for the student to include a historical
account of the development of the bicycle throughout the 20th century. However, if a particular design
provided the impetus for new ideas then including that design would be relevant.
Criterion C: investigation
The sources of data and information need to be clearly identified. Because of the practical nature of the
subject, most successful essays will involve some form of practical activity. The sources of data may
include making, then trialling an artifact, and experiments, modelling, surveys, interviews or monitoring.
The essay should provide sufficient detail to allow an independent person to repeat the exercise. Students
are expected to show an awareness of the limitations or uncertainties inherent in the techniques and
equipment used.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
This criterion relates to knowledge and understanding of the topic chosen, together with its context.
Students are expected to understand clearly the scientific and technological concepts used in the extended
essay.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to present their essays as a logical development of an argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument. This
argument often results from practical activity and testing. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts#p#分页标题#e#
that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 77
Design technology
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
This criterion relates to the questioning and diagnostic treatment of data and information. The most
successful design technology extended essays will include a complete assessment of the design cycle,
resulting in a comprehensive evaluation of the final artifact or system.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students are expected to make effective use of technological and scientific terminology and, where
appropriate, scientific notation.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
An extended essay in design technology lends itself to many forms of graphic presentation. Most essays
are enhanced by the use of charts, tables, technical drawings, sketches and photographs. The graphical
nature of many topics makes these essential. Where possible, these should appear in the body of the
essay, as close as possible to the relevant text. Hand-drawn diagrams are acceptable. Raw data obtained
through experimentation, testing or surveys may be included within an appendix. Any material that is
not original must be acknowledged.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
The most successful essays contain original thoughts and ideas, demonstrating creativity and innovation,
normally resulting from practical activity. Outstanding essays demonstrate the student’s ability to
overcome and solve problems, and consider and evaluate a variety of alternative solutions.
78 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Design technology
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all#p#分页标题#e#
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in economics provides students with an opportunity to undertake in-depth research
in economics in an area of personal interest to them. It allows students to develop research skills, to apply
economic theory to real-world situations, and to analyse and evaluate the outcomes of their research.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured analytical essay that effectively addresses
the particular research question.
Choice of topic
Students should undertake an essay that uses the core principles of economics as a basis for researching
a particular topic. Students should use a combination of primary and secondary research as the basis for
their extended essay, and should apply the accepted theories, tools and techniques of the subject to the
topic chosen.
Essays should not be historical. They should be related to economic information that is no more than
three years old. Essays that are too retrospective, for example, “What was the impact of the South-East
Asian crash on Thailand during 1990–1995?”, almost invariably become descriptive.
Students should ensure that their research question can be answered using economic concepts and
theories, and that the question does not lean too heavily towards business and management.
The topic chosen should provide opportunities for some critical analysis of the data collected. Topics
that depend entirely on summarizing general secondary data should be avoided, as they are likely to
lead to an essay that is essentially narrative or descriptive in nature. However, the effective use of relevant
secondary data to answer the research question will be fully rewarded by the examiner.
Restricting the scope of the essay will help to ensure a clear focus, and will also provide opportunities
for demonstrating detailed economic understanding and critical analysis. Choosing a research question
that is made up of more than one question is unlikely to result in a successful essay—for example, “Is the
café industry in Vienna an example of oligopoly and, if so, do the cafés collude with each other?” or “What
is the effect of interest rate policy on aggregate demand in Greece and what should the government do
to increase aggregate demand?”. In the first example, the answer to the first part of the question must
be affirmative in order to proceed with the essay. If not, the second part of the question cannot be
answered. In the second example, the scope of the essay is simply too wide.
Details—subject specific
Economics
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 79
The following examples of titles for economics extended essays are intended as guidance only. The
pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad#p#分页标题#e#
topics (indicated by the second title).
· “What market form characterizes the petrol supply industry in my area of Madrid?” is better than
“What is the market structure of the Spanish petroleum industry?”.
· “What is the effect of the recent imposition of a minimum wage in Austria on unemployment in the
fast food industry in Graz?” is better than “What has been the effect of the minimum wage on
unemployment in Austria?”.
· “To what extent has the fall in the exchange rate of the US dollar affected the tourist industry in
Carmel, California?” is better than “How has the fall in the exchange rate of the US dollar affected
the US economy?”.
· “What has been the economic effect of water privatization on the farming industry in my region of
Zambia?” is better than “How has the privatization of water affected Zambia?”.
It may help if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research question,
followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in answering
the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some examples
of this could be as follows.
Topic Pricing at the local supermarket
Will the recent policy of cutting bakery prices lead to increased revenue
for the Safeway supermarket in Ryde, Sydney?
Research question
Primary research is conducted through observation and supported by
secondary research, such as company records and textbooks. This results
in a detailed examination of elasticity and its relationship with total
revenue.
Approach
Topic The economic impact of privatization
To what extent did Matav, a Hungarian telecommunications company,
become more efficient post-privatization?
Research question
Primary data is collected through interviews with company management
(qualitative research) and secondary data is collected by accessing
company reports. Economics texts are used for researching the economic
theory of privatization.
Approach
Topic The impact of monetary policy
Has the Kenyan central bank’s policy of interest rate cuts led to a rise in
new car sales in Nairobi?
Research question
A consumer questionnaire (quantitative research) is circulated and
interviews (qualitative research) are carried out with sales managers of
new car firms. Government macroeconomic statistics (secondary research)
are also accessed.
Approach
80 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Economics
Treatment of the topic
It is important that the topic and research question reflect a firm emphasis on economics, and that they
do not become directed towards another subject area. Where topics could be approached from different#p#分页标题#e#
viewpoints, such as business or history, the treatment of material must reflect an approach that uses
economic theory and, therefore, meets the subject requirements of economics.
Students must choose a research question that can be treated effectively within the word limit and is
not of a trivial nature. Research questions that do not allow a systematic and meaningful investigation
using relevant economic theory, and do not demonstrate critical analysis and detailed understanding,
are unlikely to be suitable in economics. In some instances, it may become clear at an early stage in the
research that too little information is available to permit such an investigation. In such cases, a change
of focus should be made.
Students may be encouraged to carry out original research on a topic within any of the syllabus sections
in the current Economics guide. One advantage of doing an essay on a microeconomics topic is the ability
to carry out primary research in the form of surveys, questionnaires or interviews. Nonetheless, it is also
possible to carry out a highly successful analysis of a question related to macroeconomics, international
economics or development economics, as long as the data and information collected are used to construct
a clear, reasoned argument in response to a sufficiently narrow research question. The main danger of
choosing a question from these areas is in choosing a research question that is inappropriately wide. In
addition, it is very important that the question is original and has not already been answered in secondary
sources. In this case, the danger would be that the student might simply present a summary of secondary
sources rather than a new reasoned argument.
Students should integrate relevant economic theory with the evidence obtained through the research.
An essay that delivers the theory as a separate section of the essay and does not apply it to the specific
research question is unlikely to be successful in terms of analysis using the theory.
Good critical analysis and evaluation can be demonstrated through sound assessment and judgment of
the extent to which the relevant theory is useful in answering the research question.
An extended essay in economics is a formal essay, so students must be sure to adopt one of the common
standards of presentation of research essays.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
In economics, it is strongly recommended that the research question is stated in the form of a question:
this is a reliable way of avoiding excessively descriptive essays. It must be possible to answer the question
using contemporary economic theory. It must be clearly focused and sufficiently narrow so that it is
possible to answer it within the word limit. The question should not be trivial, nor should the answer to
the question be patently obvious. It should not be a “double-barrelled” question with two parts or a#p#分页标题#e#
“yes/no” question.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance of the subject, why it is worthy of investigation,
and how the research question is appropriate for economic analysis. The introduction should not be seen
as an excuse for padding out an essay with a lengthy superficial account of the reasons for choosing the
subject. The student’s personal experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 81
Economics
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic. At the
very least, there should be some evidence that appropriate economic sources have been consulted.
Wherever possible, primary sources should be used, with secondary sources as evidential support.
Statistical data collected from books or the Internet (for example, from national statistical agencies, the
IMF, the ILO, the World Bank, the WTO) may be very valuable and can be effectively used to answer the
question.
If surveys are carried out, the questions must reflect appropriate and sensible economic analysis. For
example, any conclusions about the elasticity of demand for a good would be highly suspect if a survey
asked about the hypothetical change in a quantity demanded based on a hypothetical change in price.
Good planning may be demonstrated by the use of appropriate information to support a well-structured
argument. The essay should not include theory or information that is not used to answer the research
question directly. For example, it would not be appropriate to include large sections of textbook economic
theory without showing how and why the theory can be applied to the particular research question.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Having chosen a topic of interest and carried out an appropriate amount of research, the student should
be able to demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the topic. This is another reason why the research question
has to be suitably focused. The essay should be comprehensive and thorough.
Axes and curves/lines on diagrams should be fully labelled. Relationships between curves/lines should
be accurately drawn. For example, the relationship between marginal and average values should always
show the correct mathematical link. If appropriate, there should be an appreciation of the ideological
underpinning of a diagram. For example, an essay looking at demand management as a way of reducing
unemployment should use an appropriate AS curve.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
It should be evident throughout the entire essay that the research question is being answered. Relevant
economic theory, concepts and data/information must be integrated in a logical and coherent manner.#p#分页标题#e#
A valid and persuasive argument needs to be developed in a clear and structured way, with some
awareness that there may be alternative viewpoints.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Data/information must be used in the context of appropriate economic concepts and theories. Effective
analysis occurs if the information gathered is examined using economic theories. Essays that are highly
descriptive will score poorly here.
Students should show critical awareness of the validity of their information and the possible limitations
of their argument. Very importantly, the essay should clearly note any assumptions that have been made
in setting out the argument and reaching the conclusions.
Diagrams should rarely be included if there is no evidence to support their relevance to the research
question. For example, an essay looking at a non-collusive oligopoly should not indiscriminately include
a kinked demand curve if there is no evidence of the behaviour associated with such a curve.
82 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Economics
If theories or diagrams are included that are not supported by evidence, the student should note that
the situation might be explained by the theory, but that there is no evidence to prove firmly that the
theory is valid. For example, where it appears that a firm is operating in a monopolistically competitive
market and is not making abnormal profits but the student does not have proof of this, then the
explanation should make clear that it is an assumption and that it has not been empirically proven.
Diagrams must be integrated into the essay. Real data should be used on diagrams wherever possible.
For example, if the essay is about using taxes to reduce the negative externalities caused by smoking in
Canada, then the y-axis should show “the price of cigarettes (C$ per package)” and any real numbers (for
example, 25% tax) should show on the diagram. When real values are known, they should be shown.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
It is extremely important that economic terminology is used and that definitions of key terms are provided.
This will clearly enhance the academic tone of the essay.
Definitions should be precise. For example, a discussion of elasticity should refer to percentage or
proportionate changes as opposed to “big” or “small” changes.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
any new material. Any obvious limitations to the analysis/argument should be restated here, as evidence
of critical awareness. For example, if a survey is carried out but the sample size is deemed to be rather
small, then it could be stated that the sample size might limit the validity of the conclusion drawn. If#p#分页标题#e#
interviews are carried out, it could be noted that the ideological bias of the interviewees might limit the
validity of the conclusions drawn.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Additionally, if diagrams are poorly presented or if the information shown on the diagram is unclear, one
mark should be deducted.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it states the research question, explains how the
investigation was carried out and summarizes the conclusion. However, the quality of the research
question or the conclusion is not judged here. For example, an essay with a very broad research question,
such as “What were the effects of the Asian financial crisis?”, is likely to score poorly on several of the
criteria simply because it is far too broad and unfocused. However, if the student clearly states the (poor)
question and includes the other two required elements, then the abstract can still receive full marks.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 83
Economics
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in economics essays include undertaking appropriate
primary research, for example, the construction of a meaningful and relevant survey with an
appropriate sample, or interview(s) with relevant people, drawing meaningful conclusions based on
an analysis of a large amount of statistical data and the choice of an original topic (although it should
be noted that less original topics should not be penalized here).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
making mature and balanced conclusions from the research undertaken, showing awareness of the
limitations of the research and evaluating the applicability of economic theory.
84 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Economics
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
Environmental issues are occupying a position of increasing significance on the world agenda, and an
extended essay in environmental systems and societies provides students with an opportunity to explore#p#分页标题#e#
an environmental topic or issue of particular interest or relevance to themselves and their localities. Since
the subject is a multidisciplinary one, the student will need to select and integrate theoretical contexts
and methodologies from those academic disciplines appropriate to the chosen topic. In this respect, a
systems approach is considered particularly effective, and students will be expected to show some
employment of this approach in the analysis and interpretation of the data gathered.
Choice of topic
Environmental systems and societies focuses upon the interaction and integration of “natural”
environmental systems and human societies. An essay in this subject should likewise focus on this
relationship. It should not deal exclusively with ecological processes or with societal activities, but instead
should give significant (though not necessarily equal) weight to both these dimensions. A topic should
be chosen that allows the student to demonstrate some grasp of how both environmental systems and
societies function in the relationship under study. For example, while the environmental systems and
societies syllabus includes a study of pure ecological principles, in an extended essay it would have to
be explored within the context of some human interaction with the environmental system. Similarly,
while the syllabus includes a range of philosophical approaches to the environment, in the extended
essay, these would need to be addressed in relation to specific natural systems. Great care should be
taken, therefore, to ensure that the topic chosen would not be better submitted under one of the more
specialized subject areas of either the experimental or the human sciences. This would invariably apply,
for example, to topics focusing exclusively on human health, disease or politics.
A crucial feature of any suitable topic is that it must be open to analytical argument. If the topic chosen
fails in this regard, and lends itself only to a descriptive or narrative treatment, then the student will be
denied a large proportion of the available credit according to the assessment criteria. For example, it
would be of minimal value simply to describe a given nature reserve; it would be necessary to evaluate
its relationship with a local community possibly, or compare its achievement with original objectives or
with a similar initiative elsewhere. The topic must, in some way, leave room for an argument that students
themselves construct and support from their own analysis of the information, rather than simply reporting
analysed data obtained from other sources.
There are also some topics that should be considered unsuitable for ethical or safety reasons. For example,
experiments likely to inflict pain on living organisms, cause unwarranted environmental damage or put
pressure on others to behave unethically must be avoided. Similarly, experiments that pose a threat to#p#分页标题#e#
health, possibly using toxic or dangerous chemicals, or putting oneself at physical risk during fieldwork,
should be avoided unless adequate safety apparatus and qualified supervision are available.
Details—subject specific
Environmental systems and societies
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 85
A further critical feature of a successful topic is the sharpness of its focus. If a topic is too broad, it will
inevitably lead to a relatively superficial treatment that, again, is likely to penalize the student right from
the start. In topics that are too broad, it is unlikely that students will be able to produce any significantly
fresh analysis, arguments or meaningful conclusions of their own. To clarify the distinction between a
broad and a sharply focused topic, the following examples of titles for environmental systems and societies
extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by
the first title) should be encouraged rather than the broad topics (indicated by the second title).
· “The ecological recovery of worked-out bauxite quarries in Jarrahdale, Western Australia” is better
than “Environmental effects of mining”.
· “A comparison of the energy efficiency of grain production in The Netherlands and Swaziland” is
better than “Efficiency of world food production”.
· “The comparative significance of different sources of carbon dioxide pollution in New York and
Sacramento” is better than “Impacts of global warming”.
· “Managing the environmental impact of paper use at a Welsh college” is better than “Paper recycling”.
It may further assist a student in refining the focus of their research if, beyond the topic and research
question, he or she also produces a succinct statement outlining the overall approach of the investigation.
Some examples of this might be the following.
Topic Impact of exotic plants on herbivore diversity in Tanzania
To what extent does the length of time after an exotic plant has been
introduced to an area, and the latitude from which it originates, affect
the diversity of herbivores found feeding on it?
Research question
A fieldwork investigation into the diversity of epiphytic herbivores on a
range of exotic plants in the Kilimanjaro region, linked to a brief historical
study of each plant’s introduction.
Approach
Evaluating the philosophical aims and achievement in local
conservation
Topic
To what extent are the philosophical principles and objectives of a local
conservation group being fulfilled in protecting the local environment?
Research question
An analysis of literature and attitudes from a conservation group, along
with a quantitative analysis of records of environmental quality.#p#分页标题#e#
Approach
Topic The ecological footprint of the school canteen
From the major inputs and outputs of the school canteen, what overall
estimate of its environmental impact can be made in terms of an
ecological footprint?
Research question
An analysis of records and practical measurements assessing the inputs
and outputs of the canteen, and a synthesis of data into a holistic model
indicating the environmental impact.
Approach
For some investigations, particularly those that are experimental, a clearly stated hypothesis may be just
as acceptable as, and possibly better than, a research question.
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Treatment of the topic
An extended essay in environmental systems and societies may be investigated either through primary
data collection (from fieldwork, laboratory experimentation, surveys or interviews) or, alternatively,
through secondary data collection (from literature or other media). It may even involve a combination
of the two, although, given the limited time available and word limit for the essay, the emphasis should
be clearly with one or the other to avoid the danger of both becoming rather superficial.
If the essay is focused largely on the collection of primary data, the student needs to exercise great care
in selecting appropriate methods of data collection and carrying them out effectively. Before commencing
the investigation, students should explore literature relating to their methodology, and also any pertinent
research that may give them guidelines and useful points of theoretical comparison. Hence, even in an
investigation based exclusively on primary data, the bibliography should indicate at least some recognition
of secondary sources, perhaps supporting the choice and implementation of methods or providing an
academic context for the conclusions.
If the essay is focused on secondary data, the student needs to take great care in selecting sources,
ensuring that there is a sufficient quantity and range, and that they are all reliable. There is a great mass
of populist, journalistic, partisan and unfounded claims available through the Internet and other media.
The student must take on the task of sorting through these and using only those sources that have some
academic credibility. An essay of this type would normally be expected to produce a substantial
bibliography and not be limited to just a few sources.
From whatever sources the data has been collected, it is vital that students are involved in producing
their own analysis of the data and arguing their own conclusions. This will happen more naturally if the
essay is based on primary data since the data will not have been previously analysed. A source of secondary
data, however, may come with its own analysis and conclusions. In this case, it is essential that students#p#分页标题#e#
further manipulate this data, or possibly synthesize it with other sources, so that there is clear evidence
in the essay of the student’s personal involvement in analysis and drawing of conclusions. Whether using
primary or secondary data, students should construct their own critical arguments by using and evaluating
the sources available to them.
Finally, a central theme in the environmental systems and societies syllabus is the systems approach, and
this should be reflected to some degree in the extended essay. The essay should include an attempt to
model, at least partially, the system or systems in question. The term “model” in this context is intended
in its broadest sense to include, for example, mathematical formulae, maps, graphical representations
and flow diagrams. Systems terminology should also be used where appropriate.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
To meet this criterion, a sharply focused research question defining the purpose of the essay must be
stated clearly within the introduction. It is not sufficient simply to include it on the title page or in the
abstract. To make “effective treatment possible”, first, it must not be too broad, which will lead to superficial
treatment. Second, it must allow for critical argument, and not simply require a descriptive or narrative
treatment. For example, “To what extent is X like Y?” allows for argument, whereas “What is X like?” only
invites simple description.
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In this subject, it can be quite acceptable to formulate the research question as a clearly stated hypothesis.
This may be particularly appropriate, for example, in experimental investigations. A hypothesis, as the
starting point of an experimental investigation, will always lead to the implicit critical argument concerning
the extent to which the results support or refute it.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should set the research question or hypothesis in context. For example, it might outline
necessary theoretical principles on which the topic depends, summarize other related research conclusions,
or give a brief history or geographical location of the issue under discussion. The introduction should
also indicate the significance of the question being researched—Why is it important to answer it? What
value might it have to others? What implications could the findings have?
It is also important that the introduction does not become too long. Material should only be included
where it is directly required in order to follow the overall argument of the essay.
Criterion C: investigation
Where the study involves experimentation or practical fieldwork, a detailed description of the procedures#p#分页标题#e#
used, possibly with diagrams or photographs, should be given, such that an independent worker could
effectively repeat the study. Careful attention should be given to the design of experiments to include
use of, for example, quantification, controls, replication and random sampling, where appropriate. The
selection of techniques should be explained and justified, and any assumptions upon which they depend
should be clearly stated.
If the study is based on the research of secondary data, students need to ensure that the selection of
sources is sufficiently wide and reliable. Where Internet-based sources are used, for example, students
should be particularly aware of their potential unreliability. Their process of selecting sources and data
should be described and justified, and, in cases where there is a variety of relevant perspectives held,
the selection of sources should reflect this. Where appropriate, there should be an indication of the
methods by which the secondary data has been generated or the evidence upon which it is founded.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students are expected to have a sound knowledge and understanding of environmental systems and
societies, as detailed in the current Environmental systems and societies guide. For many topics, this
knowledge will need to be supplemented through independent study. Ultimately, the student should
possess sufficient knowledge of the topic to handle the issues and arguments effectively. To score highly
on this criterion, a student would also need to show clear and perceptive links between their own study
and the body of theoretical knowledge associated with this subject.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
There should be a clear step-by-step logical argument linking the raw data to the final conclusions. Each
step or proposition on the way should be defended against any plausible alternatives and potential
criticisms with clear evidence. Personal opinions are acceptable, but again should be convincingly
substantiated by the available evidence. The argument must directly answer the research question in
the precise way that it has been formulated.
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Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Analytical skills can be demonstrated in the selection, manipulation and presentation of quantitative or
qualitative data gathered from either primary or secondary sources. They will be most obviously apparent
in the employment of such things as graphical representations, mathematical manipulations or flow
diagrams. Analytical skills may also be evident in the student’s ability to select specific data from sources,
identifying their relevance and relationships to one another, and reorganizing them into an effective#p#分页标题#e#
verbal argument.
Evaluative skills will be apparent in the students’ reflections on the reliability and validity of the data
gathered, and their subsequent interpretations. For essays concerned largely with collecting primary
data, this will involve discussing inadequacies in the experimental design, the validity of assumptions
made, limitations of the investigation, and any systematic errors and how they might have been avoided.
For essays concerned largely with collecting secondary data, similar considerations should be applied
to the sources that were accessed.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students are expected to use appropriate scientific and systems terminology, as employed in the current
Environmental systems and societies guide.
Criterion H: conclusion
It is highly recommended that this aspect of the essay is given a separate section with its own heading.
It should contain a brief, concise statement of the conclusion that is in direct response to the research
question or hypothesis. This should not involve new information or arguments, but should be a summary
of what can be concluded from, and is supported by, the evidence and argument already presented.
In addition to the concluding statement, students should identify outstanding gaps in their research or
new questions that have emerged and deserve further attention.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Particular attention should be paid to the use of graphs, diagrams, illustrations and tables of data. These
should all be appropriately labelled with a figure or table number, a title, a citation where appropriate,
and be located in the body of the essay, as close as possible to their first reference. Any downloaded or
photocopied material included should be clearly legible.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
This criterion invariably favours those students who have some direct involvement or personal contact
with the environmental issue under study, and this should be encouraged wherever possible. It is more
challenging for a student to clearly demonstrate personal engagement, initiative and insight in a topic#p#分页标题#e#
with which their sole contact has been through the Internet or library bookshelves.
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Environmental systems and societies
“Intellectual initiative” may be apparent in the formulation of a novel and penetrating research question,
or in the design or inventive modification of an experimental procedure, or in a creative identification
and selection of secondary source material, for example. A major theme of this subject is the
interrelatedness of systems and components within them, and many common principles can be applied
to a wide variety of systems. An essay that overtly recognizes these underlying principles and the
interrelatedness of components will most clearly demonstrate an element of the “insight and depth of
understanding” referred to in this criterion.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in film provides students with an opportunity to undertake an in-depth investigation
into a topic of particular interest to them. Students are encouraged to engage in diligent, serious, personal
research, and to develop and explore in a disciplined and imaginative way an area of study specifically
appropriate to film or television.
Moving images are part of the everyday international currency of information and entertainment.
Audiences everywhere, young and old alike, respond with increasing sophistication to the ways that
stories and messages are presented. Complex skills are involved in the interpretation and enjoyment of
film, but critical understanding of how images tell stories, create emotional responses and give information
is less widely developed.
The study of film in an international context also allows students to broaden their vision of film culture
beyond the dominance of Hollywood or popular network television images, in keeping with the spirit of
intercultural understanding promoted by the IBO.
Choice of topic
The first and most critical stage in preparing for the extended essay is the choice of a suitable topic and
students need appropriate guidance in making their final choice. The topic for an extended essay in film
must be one that clearly focuses on film (or television) rather than another subject area. For instance, a
study of film adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays or of classic novels must not become an essay about the
plays or the novels from a purely literary point of view, instead of a discussion about the films from a
filmic point of view.
The scope of the topic and the framing of the research question must be given careful consideration.#p#分页标题#e#
The topic needs to offer enough scope to provide material for a substantial essay without being too
general. It needs to be one that captures the interest and enthusiasm of the student. Establishing a topic,
however, is not enough. The essay also needs to have a sharp focus within the topic and the student has
to be perfectly clear about the following issues.
· What important question about the topic will the essay answer?
· What major arguments or points of view about the topic will be developed or proven in the course
of the essay?
· What needs to be said about the topic?
· What will the reader be led to understand about it?
Details—subject specific
Film
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 91
· How might the ideas discussed be supported by evidence?
· What evidence will be appropriate?
Students should avoid developing ideas around the topic and research questions that have been addressed
fully in earlier academic studies unless they propose to examine existing views and argue against them
to a greater or lesser degree. Earlier studies must be used as a basis for discussion and not be merely
replicated.
Students should be firmly advised to avoid topics that are:
· mainly dependent upon summarizing secondary sources
· likely to lead to approaches that are essentially narrative or descriptive
· too general and not well focused
· more appropriate to other subject areas.
Students should check very carefully, before embarking on a topic, that they have sufficient sources to
support a substantial essay and that they have access to these sources when they need them. Early
planning is essential.
Please note: Students who are taking the Diploma Programme film course must exercise care in
selecting the material for their extended essay to ensure that it does not overlap significantly with
any other work the student is preparing to submit for examination. The extended essay should
not be based, for instance, on the same films the student has studied for the independent study
assessment or for the presentation.
The following examples of titles for film extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “A comparison of the treatment and depiction of the family in the films of Satyajit Ray and mainstream
Hindi films” is better than “The role of the family in Indian cinema”.
· “The contribution of Nino Rota’s composition to the films of Fellini (or Morricone–Leone,
Williams–Lucas)” is better than “Effective composer–director relationships”.
· “Goddess and vampire: two female archetypes in Hollywood cinema” is better than “Women in film”.#p#分页标题#e#
· “The continuation and extension of silent film comedy in the films of Jacques Tati” is better than
“The comedy of Jacques Tati”.
Treatment of the topic
Clarity, coherence of ideas and attention to detail are all necessary to achieve an effective treatment of
a film topic in an extended essay. To ensure a suitable treatment of the topic, it is essential to construct
a well-formulated research question that allows the student to develop an essay that is cogent, rational,
and economical in expression. Ideas should be supported by relevant sources and specific reference to
film and/or television texts.
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For primary sources, there must be detailed references to at least one film (or major television work).
Primary sources could consist of the film(s), the script, the screenplay, the score, personal contacts, or
personal correspondence with individuals involved in making the film.
For secondary sources, there must be close references to relevant sources (print and other media) related
to the essay’s title. Secondary sources could include journal and magazine articles, reviews, DVD “extras”,
second unit material, promotional material, Internet material.
Once the topic and research question have been selected, students should ask themselves the following
questions.
· Is the topic one that will lead me to write a critical essay about film, film theory and history without
offering temptations for irrelevant digressions into other areas?
· Is the research question well enough focused to allow for a thorough analysis within the word limit
of the essay?
· Does the research question provide opportunities for me to write an essay that will meet the highest
levels in the assessment criteria?
Making a schedule for writing the essay will help students both meet deadlines and avoid a last-minute
rush to finish. Itemizing the stages of essay preparation (topic selection, research, drafting, polishing and
finishing) in a timeline and leaving extra time for unforeseen problems is one way of ensuring the best
work. Time for consultation with a supervisor or mentor needs to be built into the process. Students
should remember the cardinal rule of scheduling: Planning for just enough time will leave you short of
time; plan for too much time, instead.
Essays must focus on developing, supporting and illustrating their argument, rather than on plot summary
or character description. The essay should focus on the evaluation of the arguments in the sources rather
than simply on repeating what the sources have to say. Essays should not rely too heavily on a single
secondary source or on a number of items from a single author. A broad range of ideas from different
sources should be explored.#p#分页标题#e#
The use of accurate terminology is an essential requirement of an extended essay in film. Students must
pay close attention to the accurate and appropriate use of filmic terms. It is quite appropriate in an essay
on film to include elements such as drawings, diagrams, storyboard frames or camera layouts to illustrate
the text. All such references must be properly acknowledged, together with all other source materials,
in a properly structured list of sources at the end of the essay.
Given all this, it is important to note that the most successful essays are often those with a clear voice
that transmits the student’s enthusiasm and scholarship with clarity and conviction. The extended essay
should reflect a coherent and informed engagement with the student’s chosen topic.
The following examples are intended as guidance only.
Title Clint Eastwood as auteur
Research question To what extent can Clint Eastwood be considered an auteur?
An investigation into the origins of auteur theory and a discussion of
whether Clint Eastwood’s work qualifies him to be considered an auteur,
with specific reference to Play Misty For Me (1971), The Outlaw Josey
Wales (1976), Bird (1988) and Million Dollar Baby (2004).
Approach
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Film
Title Neo-noir in colour
To what extent do the films Chinatown (1974), Blood Simple (1984) and
Pulp Fiction (1994) qualify as film noirs?
Research question
An investigation into the origins and characteristics of the films classified
as film noir, and an assessment as to how far the films listed above can
be defined as belonging to the same genre or style.
Approach
Title From Hill Street Blues to CSI
What has been the influence of Hill Street Blues on subsequent US
television crime drama such as NYPD Blue and CSI?
Research question
An investigation into the impact that Hill Street Blues has had upon the
content and style of subsequent crime drama on American television,
with particular reference to specific episodes of NYPD Blue and CSI, and
the extent to which this has influenced the overall nature of the
programmes.
Approach
Title African film and cultural independence
To what extent have the films of Ousmane Sembene been able to retain
a truly indigenous style and content in the face of pressures to make films
more acceptable for an international market?
Research question
An investigation into how Ousmane Sembene’s films have achieved and
maintain international status in world cinema, with particular reference
to the narrative and visual style of Xala (1974), Guelwaar (1992) and
Moolaade (2004).
Approach
Title Ang Lee as an international film-maker
To what extent do the films of Ang Lee enable him to be considered a#p#分页标题#e#
truly international film-maker?
Research question
An investigation into what has enabled Ang Lee to become a significant
contemporary director with films from very different cultural contexts,
with particular reference to Yin shi nan nu—Eat Drink Man Woman (1994),
Sense and Sensibility (1995), Wo hu cang long—Crouching Tiger, Hidden
Dragon (2000) and Brokeback Mountain (2005).
Approach
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be
presented as a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be:
· specific and sharply focused
· appropriate to the particular area of film being explored
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· centred on film, not on peripheral issues such as biography or social discourses
· stated clearly early on in the essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
The introduction should not be used to pad out an essay with a lengthy account of the context of the
films chosen.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic.
Students should use, in the first instance, the primary sources of the films and/or television programmes
themselves, with secondary sources such as textbooks, reviews, web sites and DVD “extras” as evidential
support.
The proper planning of an essay should involve interrogating source material in light of the research
question, so that the views of academics and theorists are used to support the student's own argument,
and not as a substitute for that argument. It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge statements
made in reference to the films being studied, instead of simply agreeing with them, where there is
evidence to support such a challenge.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students should demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the films and/or television programmes
chosen, together with their historical, social and cultural, as well as academic, contexts. Wherever possible,
this knowledge should be based at least partially on primary sources.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not
usually advance an argument and should be avoided.#p#分页标题#e#
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students should demonstrate an accurate and consistent application of appropriate textual analysis to
illuminate specific aspects of the films and/or television programmes chosen, demonstrating an
understanding and a persuasive personal interpretation of the subject matter. The key concept here is
to address how moving-image texts in film and/or television create or construct meaning, and to evaluate
how others have interpreted such meanings.
If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Specifically filmic terminology must be used wherever appropriate.
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Film
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Filmographies should be included where appropriate; illustrations (including thumbnail screen grabs)
and tables and charts, if relevant, should appear in the body of the essay, as close as possible to their
first reference.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in film essays include the choice of topic and
research question, locating and using a wide range of sources, including some that may have been
little used previously or generated for the study (for instance, transcripts of oral interviews).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.#p#分页标题#e#
· Creativity: In film essays, this may include qualities such as comparison of filmic features, inventive
approaches to textual analysis, and new approaches to popular topics.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in geography provides students with an opportunity to apply a range of skills to
produce an independent and in-depth geographical study. The nature of an extended essay in geography
is characterized by a spatial emphasis and the application of geographical theory and methodology.
Choice of topic
It is important that the topic of the essay has a geographical emphasis and is not more closely related to
another discipline. It is the task of the supervisor to ensure that the research question leads the student
along a path that utilizes appropriate geographical sources, and that encourages the application of
relevant geographical concepts, theories or ideas. The essay topic may well relate to an area of the
Diploma Programme geography course but this is not a requirement and other areas of the subject may
be explored.
The scope of the essay should not be too broad: such essays are rarely successful. The best research
questions are well focused, thus encouraging analysis in depth rather than breadth. It is also important
that the geographical context of the essay is well established early in the essay.
Investigations carried out at a local scale usually score the highest marks. This narrow focus discourages
an over-reliance on published materials and encourages original research. Essays conducted in an area
that is familiar and accessible to the student have a much greater chance of achieving success through
a more personal involvement, which, in turn, encourages a greater in-depth study.
A sound methodology including the collection of high-quality data is the foundation of a good geography
essay. Good data gives the student the scope for the type of in-depth analysis that characterizes the very
best pieces of work. It is rare for an essay that is based entirely on published textbooks to score highly.
The following give some indication of the possible range of titles, research questions and approaches
that can be considered.
Details—subject specific
Geography
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 97
Title Development disparities in Vietnam
To what extent does regional development in Vietnam reflect the
core–periphery concept?
Research question
Data collection of a range of development statistics for each Vietnamese
province allows the construction of the student’s own index of
development levels pertinent to Vietnam. Provincial levels of development#p#分页标题#e#
are mapped and the resulting pattern is compared with the
core–periphery model.
Approach
Title Temperature variation in Vienna, Austria in the 20th century
What temperature variations occurred in Vienna during the 20th century
and can these be linked to variations in solar energy output?
Research question
Temperature records for the years 1900–1999 for Vienna are used to
establish trends during that period. Variations from the century mean
are calculated in order to identify warming and cooling periods. These
are then correlated with annual sunspot totals, which are used as an
indicator of solar energy output, in order to explain the periodic variations
in temperature.
Approach
Title Changes in population structure in the Czech Republic
How has the fall of communism changed the population structure of the
Czech Republic and what will be the social and economic effects of this?
Research question
Population statistics for age cohorts are gathered for the periods before
and after 1989, along with data for birth and death rates and life
expectancy. Trends in the percentage of population in various groups
(active, dependent, young, aged) are established and projected up to the
year 2030. Differences in these trends before and after 1989 are noted,
and the consequences for the Czech Republic of falling birth rates and
an aging population are evaluated.
Approach
Title Differences in quality of life in the city of Geneva, Switzerland
To what extent does the quality of life in selected communes in the city
of Geneva vary with distance from Lac Leman?
Research question
Six communes are selected, some near the lake and others at a distance
away. Three transect lines are drawn through each commune and
systematic sampling is carried out with regard to the quality of the
environment. A points system is devised using determinants such as
landscape quality, litter, vandalism, industry, traffic, noise and air
pollution, education and health facilities, shops, restaurants and access
to open space. Each commune is given a score that is then correlated
with distance from the lake. Published data regarding income levels and
house size is also used to determine the quality of life of each commune
and again related to distance from Lac Leman.
Approach
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Treatment of the topic
It is important that an extended essay in geography is not seen as just an extended piece of fieldwork.
Although there may be some similarities in approach, the extended essay need not place so strong an
emphasis on primary field data. In fact, many successful research topics are based on published data.
The emphasis, therefore, should be more on written analysis, interpretation, evaluation and the#p#分页标题#e#
development of an argument than on the techniques of data collection and processing. It is vital that
the methodology of the essay is tailored to the research question and allows for an in-depth investigation.
Appropriate resources for an extended essay in geography could include both primary and secondary
data—books, newspapers and magazines, interviews, the Internet, maps, aerial photographs and satellite
images, digital landscape simulations, video, CD, DVD, GIS, diagrams and models.
The geographical context in which the research is being conducted should be clearly outlined, usually
with the aid of one or more maps and, where relevant, photographs or satellite images.
Geographical data is of little value unless it is analysed, using appropriate geographical, statistical,
graphical or qualitative techniques, and then critically evaluated.
Illustrations and maps
It is essential that a geography extended essay is supported by appropriate methods for illustrating
information/data, such as diagrams, sketch maps, tables and graphs. Wherever these are derived from
other sources, these sources must be acknowledged.
Good essays usually have maps near the start to place the investigation in a clear geographical context.
All maps should give an indication of orientation and scale, and include a key. Any maps derived from
other sources should be clearly marked with the map reference number and the publisher, and the source
of any base maps that have not been constructed by the student should be given. Using only photocopied
maps, or those printed from commercial computer software, is rarely effective and provides little evidence
of map skills.
The use of sketch maps and labelled or annotated diagrams as support information is highly encouraged.
Maps constructed by the student on a computer are to be encouraged and it is a good idea to state the
software program used. Hand-drawn maps should be neat and clear, and employ the use of colour
shading, a scale and a key where appropriate.
Photographs, if included, should be essential to the essay and not included merely for decoration. As
such, they should be labelled or carry a written explanation of the points they are intended to illustrate.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be focused, appropriate to the subject of geography, give the essay a spatial
context and encourage an investigative approach. In geography, many successful essays develop the
research question through the formulation of a hypothesis or hypotheses. If students do this, it is important
to ensure that hypotheses are well constructed, testable, have a basis in geographical theory and involve
appropriate investigative channels. The best essays have a limited number of hypotheses. Too many
hypotheses can result in an essay that is unfocused or fragmented.#p#分页标题#e#
It is equally acceptable for the research question to examine a geographical issue, conflict or problem,
which may be formulated as a proposition or statement for discussion.
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The research question must be clearly stated in the abstract and in the introduction. It must be framed
in a way that discourages a descriptive or narrative approach, and that encourages argument and
discussion.
Criterion B: introduction
It is important to put the research question into a locational and theoretical context. The introduction
should, therefore, clearly outline the scale and location of the investigation, and demonstrate how the
topic relates to current geographical knowledge and theory. An indication should be given as to why
the topic was chosen and why it warrants investigation. The introduction should be clear and concise.
Care must be taken to avoid over-lengthy discourses on theoretical background.
Criterion C: investigation
It is important that the investigation uses a range of sources of information that may include data such
as those listed in the “Treatment of the topic” section. The information selected must be relevant to the
topic and should provide the evidence that will be used to support the argument. The essay must use
data/information that is sufficient (in quality and quantity), for example, questionnaires must have enough
respondents to make the findings valid. It is not essential, however, that fieldwork data forms the basis
of the investigation: published data sources are also valid.
The proper planning of the essay involves the adoption of a methodology that begins with the collection
and selection of appropriate information, leads to a systematic analysis with valid results, interpretation
and conclusions, and ends with a critical evaluation of the evidence and the approach adopted.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Knowledge and understanding of the theoretical background and an awareness of the academic context
are essential to a good essay. This should be achieved through the integration of the student’s own ideas
with current geographical thought, using both primary and secondary sources.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Essays that are largely narrative or descriptive cannot score highly on this criterion. The best essays
develop an argument, backed up with evidence, to convince the reader of the validity of their findings.
The argument may be personal, but at the same time must remain logical and balanced. In geography,
evidence may be presented in graphic as well as written form, using appropriate maps, diagrams, sketches,
photographs and charts/graphs.
Where relevant, the argument should present evidence that leads towards the acceptance or rejection
of the original hypotheses. In the context of the investigation of an issue, conflict or problem, bias should#p#分页标题#e#
be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Much of the evidence presented in support of an argument in a geography essay comes from the analysis
of data. This involves the use of appropriate analytical techniques and the application of relevant tests
of significance. Among the valid techniques characteristic of geographical inquiry are the use of interaction
and gravity models, network analysis, correlation techniques, measures of dispersion, sampling techniques
and standard error calculations. Where the data is qualitative, appropriate analytical techniques should
be employed. The element of personal evaluation is important when interpreting the results of data
analysis. The investigation should show some awareness of the authenticity, validity, and limitations of
the data and the methods used.
Where data has not been used, the essay must still incorporate a critical analysis and evaluation of the
information.
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It may be that the results of the analysis are unexpected or do not seem to fit established patterns.
Students should not be discouraged by this. Some of the best essays have emerged when students have
had to reconsider and re-evaluate their original ideas, and modify their argument accordingly. Such an
awareness of the need to make constant adjustments and corrections, and to recognize shortcomings,
is an essential element of research.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Geographical terminology and vocabulary must be used accurately and appropriately throughout the
essay. It is important to adopt an objective style that avoids lengthy personal statements and opinions,
and that communicates geographical information and ideas in a clear and precise manner.
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion should synthesize the findings of the investigation and briefly reiterate the evidence
relevant to the research question. The essay should state, where relevant, which hypotheses have been
accepted or rejected and why. Hypotheses that have been rejected may be modified or replaced,
suggesting new avenues of investigation.
The conclusion should critically evaluate the appropriateness of the methodology and acknowledge any
flaws or limitations in the investigative process. Any unresolved questions that have arisen from the
research should be introduced at this stage.
The conclusion should not be an emotive personal statement relating to an issue, conflict or problem,
nor should it introduce new information that has not been discussed in the argument.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that#p#分页标题#e#
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
All illustrative material referred to in the body of the essay (maps, photographs, field sketches, charts
and so on) should be located at relevant points, not collected at the end of the essay or in appendices.
It should be well set out, and used to enhance the written text and clarify explanations.
Large data tables, large published maps referred to in the text, transcripts of interviews or an extensive
series of calculations should be placed in the appendices. Field notes need not be included as an appendix,
although it is a good idea to include one completed form in the case of questionnaires.
Where possible, the title, map reference number, date and publisher should be given for all maps consulted;
and the source of all data, diagrams, graphs, charts, tables and photographs must be given.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract should clearly state the research question; give a brief account of how the investigation was
carried out, the methods that were used and the types of information that were gathered; and summarize
the findings as stated in the conclusion.
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Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in geography essays include formulating a
challenging research question, employing innovative or inventive methods of data collection and
data analysis, and producing a work of originality.
· Depth of understanding and insight: These are most likely to be demonstrated through the ability
of the student to:
- grasp the theoretical background to the topic and keep it central to the investigation
- use reflection in the development of the argument and critical evaluation of the essay
- select and use imaginative illustrative techniques
- overcome problems that arise
- modify ideas in light of new evidence.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in history (including Islamic history) provides students with an opportunity to undertake
in-depth research in an area of history of genuine interest to them. The outcome of the research should
be a coherent and structured essay that effectively addresses a particular issue expressed as a research
question, or, if this is unsuitable, a hypothesis. Students writing their extended essay in history are strongly#p#分页标题#e#
advised to use a research question.
Choice of topic
The topic chosen must focus on the human past, be worthy of study, and lend itself to systematic
investigation in line with the published assessment criteria. Essays that focus on events of the last 10
years are not acceptable, as these are regarded as current affairs, not history.
It is not a requirement for the topic to be chosen from the Diploma Programme history course, but it
must be acceptable to the supervisor. It should provide an opportunity for critical analysis of source
material, and not depend on summarizing general secondary sources (such as textbooks and
encyclopedias), as this approach is likely to lead to an essay that is essentially narrative or descriptive.
The topic chosen must be suitable for effective treatment within the 4,000-word limit, so those that cover
many aspects of history, and/or a long time period, are unlikely to produce successful essays. Narrowing
the scope of the essay will help to ensure a clear focus, and will also allow students to demonstrate
detailed and specific historical knowledge, understanding and critical analysis.
The following examples of titles for history extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title). Note that it is not necessary to have a separate title for an extended essay
in history, as the research question or hypothesis can be used on the cover as well as in the abstract and
essay. It is usually better if this is the case, because it avoids confusion and helps the student to obtain
a clear focus. However, most students start by thinking in terms of a wider topic and the following
“Treatment of the topic” section gives guidance on defining and narrowing it.
· “Causes of the collapse of the Mayan civilization” is better than “The Mayan civilization”.
· “Varying interpretations of the Salem witch trials” is better than “Witch trials in North America”.
· “Use of the visual arts in fascist propaganda” is better than “Fascist propaganda”.
· “Stalin’s use of the party machine and terror” is better than “The Soviet Union under Stalin”.
· “The role of the Pan-African movement in the downfall of Kwame Nkrumah in 1966” is better than
“Kwame Nkrumah”.
Details—subject specific
History
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 103
Treatment of the topic
It is important that the topic, as stated in the research question, is appropriate for a history extended
essay. Where topics could be approached from different viewpoints, such as economics or geography,
the treatment of material must meet the subject requirements of history.#p#分页标题#e#
Students must choose a research question that is not of a trivial nature. Research questions that do not
lead to systematic investigation, critical analysis and detailed understanding are unlikely to be suitable.
Social history does include areas such as music and sport, but these are only acceptable for a history
extended essay if they are tackled from a historical perspective. Adequate available sources are essential.
If it is clear at an early stage in the research that they are not, a change of topic or focus should be made.
Research requires the use of sources. Ideally, primary sources will be included but an essay that uses only
secondary sources will not be disqualified. Many different approaches to the research question can be
appropriate, for instance:
· using primary and secondary sources in order to establish and appraise varying interpretations
· analysing sources in order to explain changing views over time of particular happenings or
developments
· using source material for a case study or local history project, perhaps leading to a comparison of
local and national developments
· collecting and analysing oral and written data from family and other contacts to help explain past
happenings, perhaps leading to a comparison of local and national developments
· using all available sources to answer the question posed.
Some examples of titles, research questions and approaches chosen in the past include the following.
Title Varying interpretations of the Salem witch trials
Research question Which theory best explains the Salem witch trials?
Background reading is undertaken to enable identification and
explanation of two dominant theories as to why the trials took place. The
merits of the two theories are appraised using data obtained about the
accused and the accusers.
Approach
The influence of National Socialist ideology on the German school
system in the late 1930s: a case study
Title
To what extent were Hitler’s educational aims fulfilled in the Uhland
Gymnasium, 1937–1939?
Research question
Reading is undertaken to enable a summarization of National Socialist
ideology and curriculum proposals. Primary sources (teachers’ records)
are used to establish how far the proposed changes were put into practice
in one school during 1937–1939.
Approach
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History
Title Changing views of the 1962 Cuban missile crisis
How and why have explanations of the Cuban missile crisis changed since
1962?
Research question
General reading is undertaken for a historical introduction and note
taking. The views of a number of historians are summarized in order to
understand, categorize and evaluate selected explanations of the 1962#p#分页标题#e#
missile crisis in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.
Approach
The value and reliability of sources should not be accepted uncritically in history extended essays,
especially when the authenticity of some of the sources is questionable. Students can show awareness
of the value and limitations of the main sources used in their investigation through analysing their origin
and purpose. (Who were the authors? What were their intentions? Is it likely that any of the sources have
been altered?) Relevant outcomes of this analysis should be integrated into the student’s argument (or
at least considered in footnotes).
Students should aim to produce an argument that consistently shows good historical understanding in
setting the research question into context, and addressing it fully and effectively. The argument should
also be well substantiated, based on relevant specific evidence produced with added analytical comments.
Good critical analysis and historical judgment can be demonstrated through a sound assessment of
source material and differing explanations and interpretations. Opportunities for reporting and assessing
differing interpretations will vary with the topic chosen; students will gain credit for explaining why a
historian reached the interpretation, not just for stating it.
An extended essay in history is a formal essay that is marked according to the assessment criteria. An
essay may appear to be satisfactory but it will not score well if the criteria are ignored.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be appropriate to the particular subject in which the essay is submitted. In
history, this means that it must focus on the human past and not be of a trivial nature. The research
question must be clearly and exactly focused, and stated in both the abstract and the introduction of
the essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance and context of the topic, why it is worthy of
investigation and, where appropriate, how the research question relates to existing knowledge. It should
not be used for lengthy, irrelevant background material.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic. Students
should aim to make use of both primary and secondary sources but this may not always be possible. The
data gathered should be the evidence found in the sources to establish the context and to support the
argument and conclusion of the essay. Proper planning of an essay should involve integrating source
material, both factual and historians’ views, in light of the research question. The latter should be used
to support the student’s own argument and not as a substitute for it. A statement by a historian should#p#分页标题#e#
be challenged where there is evidence to do so.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 105
History
All material used from sources must be acknowledged in references. If students make use of Internet-based
sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The essay should have a solid foundation of specific relevant knowledge, whose meaning is understood
by the student. This knowledge can then be analysed and, on the basis of this analysis, an argument can
be formed and a conclusion to the research question reached.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument based on
specific details, to persuade the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts
that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Analysis is a very important historical skill. Students should analyse (that is, consider the meaning and
importance of) the relevant factual evidence/data produced by their research, to argue a case and reach
a conclusion. Sources used in the research process should be evaluated and their reliability assessed.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students writing extended essays in history need to take three factors into consideration for this criterion:
the language must be clear and unambiguous, historical terminology should be used, and statements
should be specific and precise, avoiding sweeping generalizations and unsupported assertions. This
criterion is not meant to disadvantage students who are not writing in their first language—as long as
the meaning is clear, the historical content will be rewarded.
Criterion H: conclusion
The most important aspect of the conclusion of a history essay is that it must reflect the evidence and
argument presented in the body of the essay. It should also answer the research question asked, and if
the data and analysis failed to do so, the conclusion must state this as well as any other problems
encountered.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).#p#分页标题#e#
Careful recording of the relevant details of all evidence significant to the research question is necessary
so that complete references can be provided in the essay, including page numbers. Any accepted form
of referencing can be used. Full details of the author, title of publication, publisher and date of publication
must be provided in the bibliography, which should list all the sources used in the essay in alphabetical
order (by author’s family name). Tables and charts should appear in the body of the essay, as close as
possible to their first reference. Any material that is not original must be acknowledged. If an appendix
is included, it should be cross-referenced with the essay, otherwise it has little value.
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Criterion J: abstract
The abstract must consist of three elements: the research question (or hypothesis), the scope of the essay
(that is, what was investigated and how it was investigated) and the conclusion. An abstract is not a precis
of the topic.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in history essays include the choice of topic and
research question, locating and using sources that have been little used previously or generated for
the study (for instance, transcripts of oral interviews), and new approaches to popular topics (possibly
achieved through evaluation of varying historical explanations).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 107
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in human rights provides students with an opportunity to undertake an in-depth
study of a limited topic in this area of research. Students who are considering registering an extended
essay in this subject (which is a school-based syllabus) are strongly advised to study carefully a copy of
the syllabus, obtainable from IBCA, before making a final decision. The syllabus gives a clear idea of the
scope and content of the subject, and will help students to decide whether their choice of topic is
appropriate. The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured essay that effectively
addresses a particular issue expressed as a research question, or, if this is unsuitable, a hypothesis.
Choice of topic
Human rights considerations are relevant to almost any human activity, but particularly those involving#p#分页标题#e#
the treatment of groups or individuals, use of resources and technologies, or access to services such as
education. Human rights issues are often referred to in the media, especially in the context of war and
conflict. The protection of human rights has also inspired the founding of several important organizations
such as the Red Cross, the United Nations and Amnesty International.
There are many topics that are potentially suitable for a human rights extended essay. However, when
choosing a topic, it is important for students to bear in mind that it must encourage analysis and evaluation
rather than description and unsupported value judgments, and must allow critical evaluation of human
rights issues and practices in light of relevant theories and arguments.
When choosing a topic, students must ensure that the various assessment criteria can be satisfied within
the 4,000-word limit. Students are advised to avoid topics that are too broad in scope to permit an
in-depth study within the prescribed word limit. A limited topic, thoroughly researched and with a clear
focus, is preferable to a broad topic that can only be examined superficially.
Students may use journalistic or visual material, interviews or data from the Internet, but their essays
should not be based solely on such sources. An extended essay in this subject is expected to show that
the student possesses a knowledge and understanding of human rights theories.
The following examples of titles for human rights extended essays are intended as guidance only. The
pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad
topics (indicated by the second title).
· “The political rights of women in Saudi Arabia” is better than “Women’s rights”.
· “The cultural rights of Australian Aborigines” is better than “The cultural rights of indigenous peoples”.
Details—subject specific
Human rights
108 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
· “The US intervention in Kosovo: a critical analysis of justifications for the use of force to protect human
rights” is better than “The USA and Kosovo”.
· “The UN response to the genocide in Rwanda” is better than “The Rwandan genocide”.
Treatment of the topic
The topic for a human rights extended essay should focus on a particular human rights issue or a practice
of a particular agent, be it a government, individual or organization, linking this issue or practice to
relevant theories of human rights. For example, the first topic in the following list (about the political
rights of women in Saudi Arabia) could involve an exploration of the issue of cultural relativism versus
the universality of human rights. Similarly, the third topic in the list could involve references to “just war”#p#分页标题#e#
theories or arguments for and against the use of force in protecting rights.
Similar treatment should be applied to other topics. For example, a student studying the work of a local
human rights organization or a local human rights issue should link this to relevant theories. An essay
comparing US and Soviet rhetorical descriptions of a human rights issue during the Cold War, for example,
should make explicit what ideas or theories of human rights these superpowers seemed to be promoting.
Whatever the topic, the treatment must involve a consideration of relevant theoretical perspectives.
An effective treatment of a topic requires that issues, practices, and relevant theories and arguments are
explained in a concise and analytical manner using appropriate terminology, and that the ideas are
supported by well-chosen examples. The argument in the essay should be logical and students should
aim to answer the research question or prove the hypothesis set out in the introduction. In addition, a
good essay will demonstrate that the student has used sources of information critically, paying particular
attention to biased language and reporting. Relevant illustrations, diagrams and statistical tables should
also be used when appropriate.
The following are some examples of titles, research questions and approaches for human rights.
Title The political rights of women in Saudi Arabia
To what extent can the limited political rights of women in Saudi Arabia
be justified?
Research question
Reading is undertaken to enable a description of the political rights of
women in Saudi Arabia and arguments that support such limitations. The
limited political rights are critically discussed in light of some human
rights theories—for example, cultural relativism and universality of human
rights.
Approach
The US intervention in Kosovo: a critical analysis of justifications for
the use of force to protect human rights
Title
To what extent was the US use of force in Kosovo a justified humanitarian
intervention?
Research question
Reading is undertaken to enable a summary of the debate that preceded
the US intervention in Kosovo and the impact it had on Kosovo. The US
intervention in light of the “just war” theory is discussed to assess to what
extent the US actions were justified.
Approach
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 109
Human rights
Title The UN response to the genocide in Rwanda
Research question How could the UN intervention in the Rwandan genocide be justified?
Reading is undertaken to enable a summary of the UN debate regarding
the intervention in Rwanda and the impact the intervention had on the
country. There is an analysis of arguments for and against intervention,
an identification of which human rights theories the arguments are based#p#分页标题#e#
on and a discussion of whether the UN response was justified.
Approach
Students should aim to produce an argument that shows a good understanding of relevant concepts,
ideas, theories and contemporary human rights issues. They should demonstrate an awareness of cultural
and religious contexts that may affect the interpretation of human rights issues.
An extended essay in human rights is a formal essay that is marked according to the assessment criteria.
An essay may appear to be satisfactory but it will not score well if the criteria are ignored.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be appropriate to the particular subject in which the essay is submitted. In
human rights, this means that it must focus on some contemporary human rights issue. The research
question must be clearly and exactly focused, and stated in both the abstract and introduction of the
essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance and context of the topic, why it is worthy of
investigation, what the key concepts are and how the research question relates to existing knowledge.
A good introduction also provides an outline of the essay and may contain a hypothesis. It should not
contain irrelevant background material.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources is influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic. Students should aim
to use sources that present different theoretical approaches, as well as those that enable human rights
issues to be understood from different cultural perspectives.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students should aim to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of human rights theories, issues and
practices. Students should also demonstrate their awareness of cultural contexts and biases that often
affect the ways that human rights theories, issues and practices are explained.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should aim to present their ideas in the form of a logical and coherent argument that is relevant
to the research question. Ideas should be substantiated with factual evidence and examples.
Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument
and should be avoided.
110 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Human rights
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students should demonstrate their analytical skills by identifying premises, assumptions, and possible
hidden agendas and biases linked to human rights theories and practices. They should be able to
deconstruct arguments related to these theories and practices, and evaluate to what extent agents who
claim to support particular principles are applying them in practice. Because human rights issues are#p#分页标题#e#
often contested and it is not uncommon for biased views to be presented, students should pay special
attention to the evaluation of sources. They should avoid unjustified and subjective value judgments
regarding human rights issues, but be able to evaluate how theories and practices link to concepts of
justice and equality.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
The language used should be clear, unambiguous and precise. Terminology specific to human rights
should be used wherever possible to communicate ideas efficiently. Sweeping generalizations,
unsupported assertions, overly subjective value judgment and biased language should all be avoided.
This criterion is not meant to disadvantage students who are not writing in their first language—as long
as the meaning is clear, the subject content will be rewarded.
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion of a human rights extended essay should reflect the evidence and argument presented
in the body of the essay. It should also, if possible, provide a direct answer to the research question or
address the hypothesis. If the research did not support the original hypothesis, this should be pointed
out in the conclusion. The conclusion should also, where appropriate, comment on the limits of the
validity of the conclusion, given the scope of research.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract must consist of three elements: the research question (or hypothesis), the scope of the essay
(that is, what was investigated and how it was investigated) and the conclusion. An abstract is not a precis
of the topic.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in human rights essays include producing new
knowledge based on original research (such as interviews), interpreting data from a human rights
perspective or interpreting human rights theories, issues and practices in an original way.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These can be demonstrated by producing original, well-justified
and substantiated arguments that directly address the research question.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 111
Human rights
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all#p#分页标题#e#
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
Information technology in a global society (ITGS) is concerned with how information technology (IT)
systems affect people. All IT systems do affect people—this is why they were devised in the first place.
Most IT systems are designed to bring some economic or quality-of-life benefit to people. Most also affect
the way that people work. It is also true that IT systems can have deleterious effects on people’s
lives—usually, but not always, unintentionally produced. An ITGS extended essay should examine how
an IT system or systems has affected people in positive and/or negative ways, with particular reference
to the underlying technology.
An extended essay in ITGS offers an opportunity to undertake research into an IT-related topic in an area
of personal interest to the student. It gives students a framework to develop research skills, to develop
their technical understanding of IT, and to relate an IT system in the real world to its effects on individuals,
organizations and society in general.
Choice of topic
The choice of topic may result from a news story, issues brought up in class discussion or a personal
interest. The topic must be firmly focused on an issue that has IT at its core. A topic that concentrates on
another discipline but which has an IT angle is not suitable for the development of an ITGS extended
essay.
Students writing an ITGS extended essay must be capable of demonstrating an in-depth knowledge of
some aspect of IT. It is expected that IT terminology is used accurately in order to describe the system or
systems under investigation, and that a level of expertise is shown that goes well beyond general
knowledge.
IT provides a rich field for the choice of an extended essay because of its extremely rapid development.
We are living through an information revolution that is so far-reaching that unprecedented moral and
ethical issues are emerging. This gives the ITGS extended essay student much opportunity to be original
and innovative in approach—qualities that can enhance and enrich an extended essay in ways that few
other subject areas can match.
Much of the evidence quoted will inevitably be obtained from Internet sources, but essays should also
include other sources, such as books, newspapers and magazines, as well as primary evidence collected
by the student. Students should be aware of the pitfalls in relying on unsubstantiated material, from
whatever source, when undertaking their research. The essay should, therefore, include some critical
analysis of the evidence.
Details—subject specific
Information technology in a global society
112 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
In choosing their topic, students are strongly advised to concentrate on developing a research question,#p#分页标题#e#
carrying out relevant research, and applying IT theory, tools and techniques. It is important that the
research question is sufficiently focused to allow adequate treatment within the word limit. Topics that
depend entirely on summarizing general secondary data should be avoided, as they are likely to lead to
an essay that is essentially narrative or descriptive in nature. However, the effective use of relevant
secondary data to support primary data in answering the research question will be fully rewarded by the
examiner.
Students are encouraged to research a current issue. A successful essay will concentrate on one issue,
but the issue should be significant enough to provide a wide variety of suitable evidence.
The following examples of titles for ITGS extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “An investigation into the ways in which IT can assist patients with motor-nerve damage” is better
than “IT and physical disabilities”.
· “Flight simulators as a means of training pilots to deal with wake turbulence” is better than “Virtual
reality systems”.
· “Measures that can be taken to protect the transmission of banking information” is better than
“Hacking”.
· “How the layering of network protocols has contributed to the rapid development of music downloads”
is better than “Music and the Internet”.
· “Issues in developing natural language interfaces” is better than “The uses of robots”.
· “How Open Source software has led to improved corporate networking” is better than “Modern
operating systems”.
It is essential that the topic has an IT system or IT systems at its core. This means that the system(s)
concerned must involve some form of data processing. Essays that focus on technology such as
engineering, or on a science topic, are not suitable for ITGS essays. Similarly, an essay that has a social
problem as its focus with only tenuous relevance to IT is unlikely to have sufficient depth.
Treatment of the topic
Although an ITGS extended essay is not intended to be an exercise in demonstrating IT skills, it must
clearly demonstrate in-depth technical understanding of the chosen area. Students who do not have
well-developed IT practical skills are unlikely to show the level of insight that is required for the highest
levels of attainment.
Although an ITGS essay should clearly demonstrate technical expertise, the inclusion of program code,
markup codes (for example, HTML) or detailed electronics should only ever be supportive and not the
main focus of the essay.#p#分页标题#e#
It may help if the student defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research question, followed
by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in answering the question.
In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some examples of this could
be the following.
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Information technology in a global society
Topic The future of natural language interfaces
To what extent is it likely that natural language interfaces will replace
the keyboard in the production of office documents?
Research question
Primary data is collected through interviews with university lecturers and
researchers working in the field of natural language interfaces (qualitative
research). The algorithms used, difficulties faced and progress to date
are discussed. Questionnaires are e-mailed to office managers to
determine to what extent there is a need for natural language data input
and whether this could improve productivity. Public domain examples
of natural language software are downloaded and its effectiveness
assessed. Secondary research is collected by accessing Internet-based
reports from universities working in the field.
Approach
The effectiveness of e-learning as an enhancement to conventional
teaching
Topic
Does the addition of e-learning systems improve the performance of
students in mathematics?
Research question
An Internet survey of e-learning systems, highlighting methodologies
used by different systems. Quantitative comparisons are made of
examination results before and after its adoption from schools that have
adopted e-learning methods. Teacher and student opinions are surveyed
by issuing questionnaires to teachers who have adopted e-learning and
those who have rejected it. Secondary research is carried out by surveying
teacher discussion boards.
Approach
Topic The impact of Open Source software
Has the wide availability of Open Source software resulted in improved
security for networks?
Research question
Primary research is carried out by means of circulating questionnaires to
network managers. Network managers who make use of Open Source
are interviewed. Questionnaires are e-mailed to web site developers. A
study is made of an example of an Open Source e-business system.
Secondary research is carried out by looking at recent articles in IT trade
magazines and surveying “help” web sites for network managers.
Approach
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be clearly and concisely stated in the introduction and the abstract. It can
be defined in the form of a question or as a statement or a proposition for discussion. The IT system#p#分页标题#e#
chosen as the focus of the essay should be sufficiently limited so that specific results of research can be
demonstrated and linked to the social consequences. It is important to avoid vague generalizations and
sweeping statements.
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Criterion B: introduction
This should explain, succinctly, the context of the research question, the significance of the topic and
why it is worthy of investigation, and provide an overview of the impact of the issue. While it is important
in the introduction to consider the theoretical context for the essay, it is not the place for a full review
or explanation of that theory.
Criterion C: investigation
There must be clear evidence of a well-planned investigation. Students are expected to use a wide range
of both primary and secondary sources. Wherever possible, the secondary research can be followed by
and further supported by primary research. Primary research can include carefully considered interviews,
surveys and investigations. All of these techniques must be concisely explained and critically assessed
in the essay, along with the analysis of the results.
The precise details from the data collection must be included in the appendices according to accepted
standards for recording data using these techniques.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The essay must demonstrate a substantial and secure understanding of the IT issues being investigated.
To this end, the level of IT knowledge must be clearly greater than general knowledge and show some
professional insight and specialized study. The essay must not be a sociological study with some simple
IT references—it should ideally address an IT-aware audience, not the general public.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
The argument should always relate to the research question and the evidence provided. The essay should
show a logical development of the argument throughout, providing a clear sense of direction.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Sufficient data should be collected so that there is scope for it to be summarized and presented in new
ways to support the arguments being developed in the essay. Graphs and tables may be considered as
methods for presenting some of the analysis. Materials collected in the research for the essay should be
used selectively to make the desired points. Effective analysis occurs if the information provided is used
to create a sound, reasoned and logical argument.
Effective evaluation occurs if the possible social and ethical impacts of the IT developments are considered,
where possible, from both local and global perspectives. Students should also show critical awareness
of the validity of their information and the possible limitations of their argument. Very importantly, the#p#分页标题#e#
essay should clearly note any assumptions that the student has made in setting out the argument and
reaching the conclusions.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Extensive and accurate usage of IT terminology should feature throughout the essay. It may be appropriate
for students to include limited amounts of program, HTML or other code to illustrate an argument, or it
may be helpful for them to quote various system specifications or configurations.
A lack of IT terminology would suggest that the original topic is not suitable for an extended essay in
ITGS.
Definitions should be clear and precise.
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Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion must develop from the argument and be consistent with it. New or extraneous content
must not be introduced at this point. Material from the introduction should not be reintroduced or
repeated here, but there should be a new synthesis in light of the discussion. Any unresolved
questions/issues should be included in the conclusion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion refers to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Any material included in the essay that is based on secondary sources should be referenced in the body
of the essay. A full bibliography must also be provided. Extracts of interviews, correspondence and copies
of relevant e-mails should be provided in an appendix.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it states the research question, explains how the
investigation was carried out and summarizes the conclusion. However, the quality of the research
question or the conclusion is not judged in this criterion.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in ITGS essays include a choice of topic that shows
originality or a new viewpoint on a well-known issue. Some IT issues are well known and regularly
debated. Better essays may identify an issue that has not previously been extensively debated in the
public domain.
· Insight and depth of understanding: An ITGS essay should show signs of in-depth IT knowledge.
Linkage of the technology to the effects on people should be clear and convincing rather than#p#分页标题#e#
speculative.
· Creativity: A good ITGS essay should deal with an issue of some contention. The suggestion of creative
and technically feasible solutions to problems can demonstrate a higher level of achievement in this
criterion.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in mathematics provides students with an opportunity to demonstrate an appreciation
of any aspect of the subject, whether it is:
· the applicability of mathematics to solve both real and abstract problems
· the beauty of mathematics as in, for instance, geometry or fractal theory
· the elegance of mathematics in the proving of theorems as in, for example, number theory
· the origin and subsequent development of a branch of mathematics over a period of time, measured
in tens, hundreds or thousands of years
· the links between different branches of mathematics and the powerful structures that enable many
seemingly different problems to be solved by a single theory
· the way that a branch of mathematics has been born, or has flourished, as a result of technology.
These are just some of the many different ways that mathematics can be enjoyable or useful, or, as in
many cases, both.
Choice of topic
The extended essay may be written on any topic that has a mathematical focus and it need not be confined
to the theory of mathematics itself.
Students may choose mathematical topics from fields such as engineering, the sciences or the social
sciences, as well as from mathematics itself. Statistical analyses of experimental results taken from other
subject areas are also acceptable, provided that they focus on the modelling process and discuss the
limitations of the results; such essays should not include extensive non-mathematical detail. A topic
selected from the history of mathematics may also be appropriate, provided that a clear line of
mathematical development is demonstrated. Concentration on the lives of, or personal rivalries between,
mathematicians would be irrelevant and would not score highly on the assessment criteria.
Details—subject specific
Mathematics
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 117
It should be noted that the assessment criteria give credit for the nature of the investigation and for the
extent that reasoned arguments are applied to an appropriate research question. Students should avoid
choosing a topic that gives rise to a trivial research question or one that is not sufficiently focused to
allow appropriate treatment within a suitably sized essay. Students will normally be expected either to#p#分页标题#e#
extend their knowledge beyond that encountered in the Diploma Programme mathematics course they
are studying, or to apply techniques used in their mathematics course to modelling in an appropriately
chosen topic. However, it is very important to remember that it is an essay that is being written, not a
research paper for a journal of advanced mathematics, and no result, however impressive, should be
quoted without evidence of the student’s real understanding of it.
The following examples of titles for mathematics extended essays are intended as guidance only. The
pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad
topics (indicated by the second title).
· “Prime numbers in cryptography” is better than “Prime numbers”.
· “The Hausdorff dimension of fractal sets” is better than “Fractals”.
· “Continued fractions in birth–death processes” is better than “Continued fractions”.
· “The proof of the law of quadratic reciprocity” is better than “CF Gauss: the mathematician”.
· “Using graph theory to minimize cost” is better than “Graph theory”.
The next examples illustrate ways in which mathematics topics can be refined and successfully approached
as extended essays.
Topic The geometry of navigation
What was the role of mathematics, and geometry in particular, in
navigation when we relied on the stars? Does it still play a part now we
have man-made satellites?
Research question
Using one of the two geometric representations of the earth (spherical
or ellipsoidal), describe how maps and charts were produced to assist
navigators in the past.
Approach
Topic Square–triangular numbers and Pell’s equation
How many square numbers are also triangular numbers, where are they,
and what other problems lead to Pell’s equation?
Research question
A description of square and triangular numbers, and how the locations
of numbers that are both are solutions of Pell’s equation. Some other
problems, perhaps in number theory and geometry, that lead to the
equation could be described, with a brief history of the equation included.
Approach
Topic The exponential function and the measurement of age and growth
How does the exponential function, and its calculus, inform areas of
science such as nuclear physics, geology, anthropology or demography?
Research question
Use one of the settings where exponential growth applies, perhaps
modelling the world’s population, to describe the phenomena. Show
how it is applicable in mathematical models of other real situations.
Approach
118 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007#p#分页标题#e#
Mathematics
Topic Approximation of irrational numbers by rational numbers
How well can π, e, and other irrationals be approximated by rational
numbers?
Research question
Use the decimal representation of irrational numbers as a starting point
to introduce approximation by rationals. Show how a continued fraction
expansion of an irrational can also provide rational approximation, and
discuss error bounds and orders of approximation.
Approach
Topic Archimedes’ calculations of areas
What is the legacy of Archimedes’ calculations of circular and parabolic
areas in today’s methods of integration?
Research question
Describe how Archimedes determined the area of a circle by using
inscribed polygons, leading also to his measurement of π. Continue with
a description of his method of discovery for calculating the area of a
parabola.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
Whatever the title of the extended essay, students must apply good mathematical practice that is relevant
to the chosen topic. Data must be analysed using appropriate techniques; arguments correctly reasoned;
situations modelled using correct methodology; problems clearly stated and techniques at the correct
level of sophistication applied to their solution. There must be sufficient explanation and commentary
throughout the extended essay to ensure that the reader does not lose sight of the purpose of the essay
in a mass of mathematical symbols, formulae and analysis.
The unique disciplines of mathematics must be respected throughout. Relevant graphs and diagrams
are often important and should be incorporated in the body of the essay, not relegated to an appendix.
However, lengthy printouts, tables of results and computer programs should not be allowed to interrupt
the development of the essay, and should appear separately as footnotes or in an appendix. Proofs of
key results may be included but proofs of standard results should be either omitted or, if they illustrate
an important point, included in an appendix.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 119
Mathematics
Criterion C: investigation
The number of sources that require consultation will be dependent on the research question that the#p#分页标题#e#
essay addresses. It must be sufficient, but not unnecessarily long, and the various items must, after being
consulted, contribute to the essay in a meaningful way.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Clear evidence of understanding of the chosen content of the essay is more important than any attempt
to exhibit an unnecessarily wide mathematical knowledge. The level of knowledge displayed should
reflect the mathematics acquired in the classroom and any additional information that the research for
the essay has provided.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
In a mathematics extended essay, the terms “reasoning” and “argument” can apply to the essay overall
and, with a somewhat different interpretation, to one or more sub-sections of the essay, such as in the
proof of a theorem. The mark awarded should reflect both of these aspects.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
The words “appropriate to the subject” are paramount here, given the breadth of mathematics today.
Essays based on mathematical proof require skills in deductive reasoning and structuring; essays of an
investigative nature, answering a research question or hypothesis, involve interpretative skills; while
mathematical modelling requires an ability to formulate correctly a problem in mathematical terms.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
The purpose of language in mathematics is, as in other subjects, to communicate. In an extended essay,
it should communicate clearly, not just to an examiner who is likely to be more mathematically
sophisticated than the student, but also to an interested reader with a similar mathematical competence
to the student. Mathematical “name-dropping” should be avoided.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Word count is rarely an important factor in a good mathematics extended essay. Since equations and
formulae (indicating the student’s mathematical reasoning) are not included in the word count, a#p#分页标题#e#
substantial essay can be produced that contains comparatively few words. Concise, elegant mathematics
supported by graphs, diagrams and important proofs that do not interrupt the development of the essay
are encouraged. However, an essay that is excessive in length will be penalized, especially if this is because
of unnecessary content. There is no mandatory minimum length for an essay in mathematics, and credit
will be given for organizing the content in an efficient readable style, rather than for a page or word
count. Mastery of appropriate concepts, and an ability to present these in an effective way using
mathematical means, should be the aim.
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Mathematics
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include intellectual initiative, insight and depth of
understanding, and creativity. Such qualities can be displayed in different ways, depending on the type
of mathematics extended essay.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 121
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in music provides students with an opportunity to undertake in-depth research into
a topic of genuine interest to them. The student is encouraged to develop and explore, in a disciplined
and imaginative way, a research question appropriate to the subject.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured piece of writing that effectively addresses
a particular issue or research question and arrives at a particular, and preferably personal, conclusion.
Real music should be at the heart of an extended essay in music. This means that particular pieces of
music, experienced via recordings, live performances or concerts, should be chosen as the core focus of
the extended essay. Students should strive for a coherent verbal analysis and interpretation of one or
more pieces of music in relation to the chosen research question.
Absolute reliance on textbooks and the Internet is discouraged and no extended essay in music should
be based exclusively on such sources. Textbooks should be consulted only insofar as they may stimulate
original ideas, provide models of disciplined, structured and informed approaches, and encourage direct
and personal involvement with the essay topic.
Choice of topic
The chosen topic may be inspired by one or several of the areas of interest listed here. (Please note, this#p#分页标题#e#
is not an exhaustive list, but is intended for guidance only).
· Aspects of the Diploma Programme music course (for Diploma Programme music students)
· Local performances or concerts
· Musical cultures that students have encountered that are not their own
· Personal contact with composers and/or performers
· Direct involvement in actually making music
· Recordings
· Music on the Internet, or downloaded from it
· Other music that has a particular interest, emotional appeal or other importance for the student
Details—subject specific
Music
122 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
It is strongly recommended that students are encouraged to be as much involved as possible in activities
such as those listed previously during the writing process, if they are relevant to the chosen topic. However,
it is recognized that students who choose an extended essay in music may not be studying the Diploma
Programme music course.
It is essential that the topic chosen is distinctively musical. It is quite acceptable, for example, for a
student to explore a topical question relating to popular music, jazz or blues, but the primary focus of
the essay must be more concerned with the music itself than with the lives of the performers, the nature
of the instruments used or the lyrics. Supervisors should, therefore, strongly discourage students who
are primarily interested in analysing text or lyrics, particularly of pop songs, from submitting extended
essays in music.
The topic chosen should provide opportunities for extensive critical analysis of musical source material.
Topics that are entirely dependent on summarizing general secondary sources (such as textbooks and
encyclopedias), and topics likely to lead to an essay that is essentially narrative or descriptive in nature,
should be avoided. Restricting the scope of the essay will help to ensure a clear focus, and will also provide
opportunities for demonstrating detailed musical understanding and critical analysis.
To achieve this goal, it is essential that the research question chosen can be effectively answered. Titles
along the lines of “Clara Schumann”, for example, do not give much scope for effective analysis or
argument—they are more likely to produce an account of her life and music. Topics such as “Computers
and music” should be treated from both musical and critical perspectives, and should concentrate on
musical, rather than technological, aspects. Redundant research questions such as the comparison of a
play to an opera of the same title (which inevitably means that only half the essay is focused on music
itself) should be avoided.
The following examples of topics for music extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings#p#分页标题#e#
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “The use of contrapuntal techniques in Bach's Art of Fugue” is better than “Bach's Fugues”.
· “Harmonic innovation in the bebop style of Dizzy Gillespie” is better than “The music of Dizzy
Gillespie”.
· “The role of minimalist techniques in Balinese gamelan” is better than “Balinese gamelan”.
· “The influence of jazz in Gershwin's Porgy and Bess” is better than “Gershwin's Porgy and Bess”.
Moreover, it may help if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could be as follows.
Title Edgard Varèse and Frank Zappa
What is the influence of Edgard Varèse on the musical output of Frank
Zappa?
Research question
An investigation into the stylistic similarities between these two
composers.
Approach
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Title Jesus Christ Superstar and opera
Research question Is Jesus Christ Superstar a modern classical opera?
An investigation into Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical language and
structures in this work, with reference to other relevant music from operas
of the Western classical tradition.
Approach
Title The naming of Mozart’s music
What evidence is there to support the title of Mozart’s divertimento
Ein Musikalischer Spass (A Musical Joke) K. 522 (1787)?
Research question
Approach An investigation into Mozart’s compositional techniques in this work.
However, it is important to bear in mind that, in the subject of music, a research “question” is sometimes
not an accurate description of the task. Therefore, students should not force aesthetic or sociocultural
issues into a question format when the articulation of a clear and probing inquiry into an idea is more
appropriate. Examples of this could be as follows.
Title Emotional tension in traditional music
Research question Emotional tension and its significance in Japanese music.
An investigation into the mechanisms used in traditional Japanese music
to create emotional tension, with reference to comparable examples in
Western music.
Approach
Note that this approach is looking for a commonality of expressive device between two cultures, allowing
for a probing inquiry through comparison. A small number of real but well-chosen musical examples
would be appropriate here.#p#分页标题#e#
Title Musical continuity in Frederick Chopin’s 24 piano Preludes Op. 28
An investigation into the presence and musical significance of a recurrent
motif found throughout Frederick Chopin’s 24 piano Preludes, Op. 28.
Research question
A study of appropriate preludes that demonstrate this feature, through
the use of formulaic notation and comparative analysis.
Approach
Note that this approach, while still using comparative analysis, is more focused on the musical mechanics
of a series of works by the same composer, allowing for an in-depth study within the word limit. In this
case, the student would only be able to study five or six preludes, given the parameters of an extended
essay.
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The music of Hildegard of Bingen—an explanation of its appeal and
justification of its popularity
Title
An investigation into the reasons for the popularity of the music of
Hildegard of Bingen today.
Research question
A study of Hildegard of Bingen’s musical style in comparison with other
sacred music from her time, through analysis and comparison of musical
examples, with particular reference to the aesthetic theory of musical
expectation and inhibition.
Approach
This approach has its dangers, in the sense that it can be easy to make a supposition in a research question,
without any evidence, and then try to prove the statement by subjective and superficial comment and
analysis. However, at its best, this approach can allow investigation into other important areas of musical
study and theory, while remaining focused on music itself.
Treatment of the topic
It should be noted that the Diploma Programme music course includes components that require
performance and/or composition as well as a musical investigation. An extended essay in music has a
different purpose, in that the focus should be clearly on a verbal response to a research question.
In order to promote personal involvement in the extended essay, the use of primary sources that are
locally available should be encouraged wherever possible. However, it is appreciated that, in certain
situations, students may not necessarily have access to primary musical sources. In such situations, in
order not to restrict the topics that can be investigated, recordings of a high quality are considered
acceptable sources. It is important that the topic and research question reflect a firm emphasis on music,
and that they do not become directed towards another subject area.
Appropriate resources for music include books, textbooks, the Internet, scores, interviews, recordings,
and live performances or concerts of the music being studied. The inclusion of appropriate reference
material, such as music notation, audio tapes or other musical examples, with music extended essays is#p#分页标题#e#
encouraged as long as the material is directly supportive of, and relevant to, the argument/evaluation.
Students are expected to evaluate critically the resources consulted during the process of writing the
essay by asking themselves the following questions.
· Which sources are vital to the support of my ideas, opinions and assertions?
· Which sources do not contribute to the analysis?
Students must choose a research question that is suitable for effective treatment within the word limit
and is not of a trivial nature. Research questions that do not allow a systematic investigation that
demonstrates critical musical analysis and detailed understanding are unlikely to be suitable. In some
instances, it may become clear at an early stage in the research that too few sources are available to
permit such an investigation. In such cases, a change of focus should be made.
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Many different approaches to the research question can be appropriate, for instance:
· use of primary sources (music and musicians) and secondary sources (material about music) in order
to establish and appraise varying interpretations
· analysing sources (primary and secondary) in order to explore and explain particular aspects of
musical techniques
· using primary source material for an analysis, with emphasis on a particular aspect of the music
· collecting and analysing orally transmitted and/or written music from live musicians and/or composers
through recordings, possibly leading to a comparison of similar or different music.
Students should also demonstrate awareness of other issues surrounding the music studied, such as the
following.
· Do I show an awareness of the value and limitations of the music I am studying through analysing
its origin and purpose?
· Do I show a consistently good musical understanding in setting the research question into context
and addressing it fully and effectively?
Relevant outcomes of this analysis should be integrated into the student's argument.
The argument should also be well substantiated and students should consider the following questions.
· With what evidence do I support my comments and conclusions?
· Is this evidence relevant and well founded, and not based simply on my preconceptions?
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Please note: extended essays that do not focus on real music are likely to score 0 in criterion A,
and are unlikely to score highly in criteria C, D, F and G.
Criterion A: research question
The research question can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be#p#分页标题#e#
presented as a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be:
· specific and sharply focused
· appropriate to the particular area of music being explored
· centred on music and not on peripheral issues such as biography or social discourses
· stated clearly early on in the essay.
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Note that larger-scale musical works or groups of pieces may limit the possibility of effective treatment
within the word limit.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
The introduction should not be seen as an opportunity for padding out an essay with a lengthy account
of the context of the music.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic.
· Students should use primary sources (scores, recordings, performances, interviews) in the first instance,
with secondary sources (textbooks and the comments of other musicians) as evidential support.
· The proper planning of an essay should involve interrogating source material in light of the research
question, so that the views of other musicians are used to support the student's own argument, and
not as a substitute for that argument. It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge a statement
by a musician, in reference to the music being studied, instead of simply agreeing with it, where
there is evidence to support such a challenge.
· If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students are expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the music chosen, together
with its historical, social and cultural, as well as academic, contexts. Wherever possible, this knowledge
should be based at least partially on primary sources.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not
usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students should accurately and consistently analyse technical aspects of the music (melody, harmony,
rhythm, texture, tone colour, and lyrics or text), demonstrating an understanding and a persuasive
personal interpretation of the music.#p#分页标题#e#
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students are expected to make effective use of musical terminology and, where appropriate, notation.
Notation may take a variety of forms, depending on the type of music studied.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
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Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
In music, discographies should be included where appropriate; musical examples, and tables and charts,
if relevant, should appear in the body of the essay, as close as possible to their first reference.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in music essays include the choice of topic and
research question, locating and using a wide range of sources, including some that may have been
little used previously or generated for the study (for instance, transcripts of oral interviews).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Creativity: In music essays, this includes qualities such as comparison of musical features, inventive
approaches to musical analysis and new approaches to popular topics.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in peace and conflict studies provides students with an opportunity to undertake an
in-depth study of a limited topic in this field. Essays should allow students to develop and show research,#p#分页标题#e#
interpretative and presentational skills.
Students who are considering registering an extended essay in this subject (which is a school-based
syllabus) are strongly advised to study carefully a copy of the syllabus, obtainable from IBCA, before
making a final decision. The syllabus gives a clear idea of the scope and content of the subject, and will
help students to decide whether their choice of topic is appropriate.
Choice of topic
The choice of topic must ensure that the various assessment criteria can be satisfied. Students are advised
to avoid topics that are too broad in scope to permit an in-depth study within the prescribed word limit.
A limited topic, thoroughly researched and with a clear focus, is preferable to a broad topic that can only
be examined superficially.
There are many areas of human interaction in which conflict and/or peace can be observed, but purely
descriptive essays should be avoided. Topics drawn from more dynamic situations allow the process of
change to be studied and the student to assess the viability of peace being achieved or maintained.
When choosing a topic, students should ensure that a variety of sources are available. Students may use
journalistic or visual/pictorial material, or data collected from interviews, but their essays should not be
based solely on such sources. In particular, students should realize that extended essays in this subject
are expected to show knowledge and understanding of the different theories about the causes of peace
and conflict (see assessment criterion D).
The following examples of peace and conflict studies extended essays are intended as guidance only.
The pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than
broad topics (indicated by the second title).
· “The debate about the effects of television violence on pre-teenagers: social and legislative safeguards
and their effectiveness” is better than “Violence on television”.
· “Maori non-violent struggles for their land” is better than “The political position of the Maori people”.
· “Racism in [X] and proposals for its reduction” is better than “A study of racism”.
· “Conscientious objection in Switzerland: a study of its history, the human rights issues, the effects
acceptance would entail, and of its political support” is better than “The case for conscientious
objection”.
Details—subject specific
Peace and conflict studies
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 129
Treatment of the topic
Peace and conflict studies involves differing interpretations of situations, events, causes and solutions.
The better essays will examine a wide variety of opinions, assess their strong and weak points, and include#p#分页标题#e#
an element of personal evaluation.
Many essays will involve topics of which students have direct experience, to which they have easy access
via family or friends, or with which they have some political, philosophical or cultural affinity. This is not
discouraged but, in such cases, care must be exercised to maintain the academic standards of essay
writing, particularly with reference to sources, contentious issues and conclusions. Several successful
essays of this type have been written within the framework of a school or local community. In these cases,
students have had no difficulty in finding ample source material, much of it being primary source material.
Peace and conflict studies is an interdisciplinary subject, and essays should reflect this. For example, data
may be drawn from statistics, geography, sociology, psychology, history, economics, politics and
journalism. Such data must be integrated, and shown to be relevant to the scope of the peace and conflict
studies syllabus.
Essays in this subject must obviously show an awareness and understanding of the differing roles, views
and activities of all parties to the conflict being researched, and must also suggest and critically examine
possible solutions to the conflict (criterion F). In responding to this criterion, as well as to criteria D and G,
students should use every opportunity to show their awareness of theories about the causes of peace
and conflict.
The assessment criteria should be used as a guide to the organization and structure of the essay. In the
early part of the essay, the chosen topic and research question should be shown to have a firm place in
some aspect of the broad peace and conflict studies syllabus. Placing the topic and research question in
context should be done briefly but clearly (criterion B).
One of the weakest elements of extended essays in this subject is the failure of many students to show
that they have any knowledge and understanding of theories about the causes of peace and conflict,
which should underpin any study of the subject. At least one of the books that deal with these theories
ought to appear in the bibliography and students should show their awareness of such theories at
appropriate points in their essays (criterion D).
Some examples of titles, research questions and approaches used in the past include the following.
Title Violence in the American school system
Research question An analysis of the causes of school violence and suggested solutions.
This is a good example of a topic of which the student had personal
experience. General reading is undertaken to set the context. This is
followed by interviews with fellow students and effective use of
regulations of local education authorities and local press reports. A sound
knowledge and understanding of theories about peace and conflict is#p#分页标题#e#
applied in researching and organizing both parts of the essay.
Approach
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Conflict in Germany between German nationals and Turkish
immigrants
Title
An analysis of the causes of conflict between the two groups, and of
possible solutions.
Research question
General reading of secondary sources/articles is undertaken to set the
context. The argument about causes of violence is developed from
interviews with German nationals and Turkish immigrants, by applying
knowledge of theories about the causes of conflict, and by using examples
of actual cases of conflict and tension. The essay concludes by suggesting
possible ways of alleviating or removing conflict.
Approach
Has the Kashmir conflict become a permanent vendetta between
India and Pakistan or is a peaceful solution possible?
Title
The question is built into the title, but is also stated in the early part of
the essay and in the abstract.
Research question
General reading of secondary sources is undertaken to write a historical
summary of the conflict and its causes since independence, with
comments drawn from knowledge of the theories about the causes of
conflict. This is followed by a discussion of possible paths to a peaceful
compromise with a cautiously optimistic conclusion.
Approach
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be appropriate to the subject in which the essay is
submitted. In peace and conflict studies, this provides students with a wide range of topics. Even if the
research question is built into the title itself in the form of a question, it must also be clearly stated in the
early part of the essay and in the abstract.
Criterion B: introduction
Students should explain briefly the importance and the context of the topic, and, perhaps, the reason
for choosing it. The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the
student’s personal experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
Criterion C: investigation
Students should demonstrate that they have selected a range of sources on the basis of their relevance
to the topic and the research question. They should also show that the investigation into sources and
data has been planned and carefully selected.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students are expected to illustrate their knowledge of the chosen topic by placing it within a context of
peace and conflict in society. This knowledge should include an understanding of academic theories
about the causes of peace and conflict.#p#分页标题#e#
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Peace and conflict studies
Criterion E: reasoned argument
This, along with the previous criterion, goes to the heart of the essay. A reasoned argument will be logical,
coherent, persuasive, well supported with evidence and always relevant to the research question.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Students are expected to apply peace and conflict analysis accurately and consistently, to demonstrate
awareness and understanding of the differing roles, interpretations and actions of all conflicting parties,
as well as a realistic examination of possible solutions to conflict situations.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
The use of language must be effective and include relevant peace and conflict terminology.
Criterion H: conclusion
This should stem from, and be consistent with, the evidence presented in the research. No new material
should be introduced apart from identifying new questions that may have arisen from the research.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Appendices are not essential and examiners are not required to read them. It is important, therefore, for
students to include all content of direct relevance to the argument in the body of the essay.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research question, the
scope of the investigation and the conclusion, not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on
the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
The qualities that distinguish an essay from the average are rewarded under this criterion. These qualities
include intellectual initiative, depth of understanding, insight, creativity and flair. When all these qualities
are present, they will identify an essay of outstanding quality. Essays that demonstrate only one or two
of them should also be rewarded.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in philosophy provides students with an opportunity to undertake a philosophical#p#分页标题#e#
investigation into a topic of special interest. The student is encouraged to engage in serious, personal
thought, to develop and explore in a disciplined and imaginative way a specific philosophical question
appropriate to the subject, and to arrive at a clear conclusion.
Choice of topic
The chosen topic may be stimulated, for example, by work done in class, by current events, by issues of
contemporary debate, by discussion, by private reading and/or reflection, or by conceptual features of
belief systems not previously encountered by the student.
A precisely circumscribed topic should be selected, so that it can be treated thoroughly. For example, it
may be preferable to choose as a starting point a specific hypothesis rather than a general one, certain
of the ideas of one philosopher rather than several, or a single text by a philosopher rather than the whole
of his or her work.
A topic should be reconsidered or amended if it is interdisciplinary in nature and/or is not directly related
to philosophy.
The following examples of titles for philosophy extended essays are intended as guidance only. The
pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad
topics (indicated by the second title).
· “An analysis of John Rawls’ procedure of justifying principles of social justice” is better than
“Philosophical views of social justice”.
· “The notion of freedom of speech in Spinoza’s Theologico-Politico Treatise” is better than “Ethics in
the 17th century”.
· “Brahman: the ultimate reality of Sankara’s Advaita Vedanta” is better than “Philosophical implications
of the Hindu scriptures”.
· “Change and continuity: a critical assessment of Herbert Marcuse’s views on art” is better than
“Philosophical aspects of art and aesthetics”.
· “Doing versus being: language and reality in the Mimamsa school of Indian philosophy” is better
than “Language and the nature of reality”.
· “An examination of the role played by reason in Anselm’s investigation of the concepts of
predestination and free will” is better than “Anselm’s exploration of the mysteries of faith”.
Details—subject specific
Philosophy
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 133
A necessary condition for a sound philosophical treatment of the topic is a well-formulated research
question. Previous experience shows that, in essays where the research question is well focused and
stated clearly, the arguments seem to unfold of their own accord. Therefore, the focus of the investigation
must be narrowed down as much as possible and stated in a concise and sharply defined research question.#p#分页标题#e#
Students must choose a research question that can be treated effectively within the word limit and is
philosophically relevant. The research question can be formulated as a question or as a statement. Some
examples with good results in the past include the following.
Title Do stem cells have moral status?
What criterion can be identified in order to ascribe a moral status to stem
cells?
Research question
An explanation and justification of a criterion that allows a moral status
to be ascribed to stem cells.
Approach
Asian philosophy of critical thinking: divergent from or convergent
to Western fundamental principles?
Title
What is the nature of the critical thinking that is clearly visible in Indian
historical texts such as the Caraka and the Nyayasutra?
Research question
An exploration and justification of the notion of critical thinking that is
found in the Caraka and the Nyayasutra.
Approach
Title Art and politics in Hannah Arendt's The Crisis in Culture
In Hannah Arendt's essay The Crisis in Culture, art and politics are not
opposed but complementary.
Research question
An investigation into the relation between art and politics in The Crisis in
Culture.
Approach
Title The roots of wisdom according to the Tao Te Ching
Does wisdom necessarily imply acting in accordance with the order of
nature, according to the Tao Te Ching?
Research question
Approach An exploration of the idea of wisdom according to the Tao Te Ching.
Title The scientific character of Freud's interpretation of dreams
Is Popper's falsifiability an adequate criterion to evaluate Freud's theory
of dreams?
Research question
An examination of whether Popper's falsifiability is an adequate criterion
to evaluate Freud's theory of dreams.
Approach
Topics that are mainly dependent on summarizing general secondary sources (such as textbooks and
encyclopedias), those that are likely to lead to an essay that is essentially narrative or descriptive in nature,
and general topics that are not well focused or are more appropriate to other subjects, should all be
avoided.
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Treatment of the topic
Clarity, coherence of ideas and attention to detail are necessary conditions for an effective treatment of
a philosophical topic in an extended essay. A lucid understanding of the problem(s) should be
demonstrated, and the proposed solution(s) should be logical and well structured. Counterclaims or
objections should be envisaged, addressed and, if possible, rebutted.
While irrelevance must be avoided, the wider implications of the philosophical issues raised should be
explored to an appropriate degree, and an awareness should be evident of the connections between#p#分页标题#e#
such issues and more universal concerns of human life.
The treatment of the research question must aim towards its philosophical exploration and the construction
of an argument, which presupposes a careful, critical analysis of themes and/or texts. This approach,
which allows many different ways of philosophical reflection, is based on the emphasis of the Diploma
Programme philosophy course on doing philosophy. Within this context, the aim of a philosophical
investigation is to encourage students to develop the ability to reason and argue, and to learn to take a
personal and independent position on philosophical issues. This should result in the construction of a
personal philosophical argument, which should be cogent, rational, and economical in expression, and
should be supported by relevant and, if possible, original examples. It is strongly recommended that any
student considering writing an extended essay in philosophy should first read the current Philosophy
guide and understand its approach.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion that is clearly philosophical or open to sustained philosophical
analysis and argument.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here. It should explain succinctly the philosophical
significance of the topic, why it is worthy of a philosophical investigation and how the research question
fits into a philosophical context (for example, a problem, discussion, tradition, or conception). The
introduction should refer to the specific research question or to the argument that is going to be
developed. Lengthy background information that is not relevant to the question should not be included.
Criterion C: investigation
When the research question has been established, the student should explore the topic, for example, by
making a research plan. The proper planning of an essay should involve interrogating source material in
light of the research question. In philosophy, research questions are explored through an examination
of themes or texts. Accordingly, the range of sources that could be used is wide, including works of
philosophers, dictionaries of philosophy, textbooks and encyclopedias. An appropriate and effective use
of sources should take into account the following.
· Descriptive approaches are not adequate for this kind of philosophical investigation. The presentation
of information about the issue under discussion should be concise, relevant and directly related to
the point that the investigation is trying to make.
· When the research question refers to a source that is not directly philosophical (for example, literature,#p#分页标题#e#
contemporary issues, cultural or local issues), the examination must be distinctively philosophical.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 135
Philosophy
· If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
· Absolute reliance on textbooks is discouraged and no extended essay in philosophy should be based
exclusively on textbooks. They should only be consulted insofar as they may stimulate ideas, provide
guidance and encourage the development of a personal investigation.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The essay demonstrates the student’s philosophical knowledge and understanding of the topic when it
does the following.
· Identifies and exposes the basic philosophical issues immediately present in the research question
· Presents and discusses philosophical concepts, ideas, arguments, perspectives and positions that
are directly relevant to the research question
· Is philosophically well informed and uses the information purposefully in order to broaden the scope
of the exploration or to support the argument
· Shows philosophical insight into themes or philosophers’ views
· Explores possible ways of understanding the issues or problems discussed
· Shows an awareness of philosophical implications arising from the research question, or the ideas
or arguments examined
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument:
arguments should be focused and sustained. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack
analysis do not usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
The construction of an argument lies at the very core of a research essay in philosophy. Developing a
reasoned argument in philosophy implies at least the following.
· The construction of an argument in a philosophical investigation plays the role of empirical research
in empirical sciences, or logical proof in the formal ones.
· Developing a philosophical argument must be clearly distinguished from simply describing or
narrating a series of theories or opinions.
· Some students who have not previously written at such length may need guidance about the relation
between argument and structure.
· Students should be familiar with the basic features of reasoning necessary to construct personal
philosophical arguments in a sound and purposeful way.
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Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Analysis has always been at the heart of philosophical method but it has been understood and practised#p#分页标题#e#
in many different ways. In one basic accepted sense, it consists of breaking something (an idea, a topic
or a question) down into its components. Analysis might also be characterized as disclosing or working
back to what is more fundamental by articulating relevant elements and structures, on the basis that
more fundamental concepts have a broader explanatory power. In turn, evaluation in a philosophy
extended essay should be the result of students developing their exploration and own line of reasoning
concerning the research question. However, this must be carefully distinguished from the mere statement
of opinions or beliefs that are not the result of the specific investigation. Analytical skills are shown by
means of an in-depth and extensive critical philosophical treatment and discussion of themes, basic
concepts and arguments; whereas evaluative skills are exhibited when ideas, arguments and perspectives
are assessed from a consistently held and well-justified perspective with clear evidence and strong
support.
The exploration of the research question implies the development of analytical and evaluative skills,
which is usually carried out through an examination of themes and texts. The following statements
suggest an approach that may enable students to research themes or texts in a consistent way. They are
not the only directions that can be taken into account but they provide a starting point from which
students can develop into independent researchers in philosophy. Students should adopt a similar
approach when they examine a philosophical issue or when they investigate a philosophical argument
presented in a text. In the case of themes, students should:
· identify the research question
· ask themselves what they think about the question asked or the hypothesis stated, taking into account
their own and other perspectives
· present reasons that support their position
· put forward possible objections or counter-arguments that could be levelled against their position
· suggest strategies for overcoming these objections or counter-arguments
· illustrate their position and counter-positions with supporting examples and relevant cases
· offer a possible and consistent answer to the question asked or a relevant exploration of the hypothesis
stated, evaluating strengths and weaknesses.
In the case of texts, students should adopt the same approach. Students should always be careful not to
refer to the text or the author as an authority. In addition, students are expected to:
· identify the philosophical issue raised by the text
· identify the author’s standpoint in the text
· state what they think about the author’s standpoint
· develop and explore their own position on the author’s standpoint by:#p#分页标题#e#
- acknowledging alternative approaches to the text
- considering how different approaches to the text enable them to progress their own thinking
about the question posed.
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Philosophy
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
An appropriate use of language in a philosophy extended essay implies at least both of the following.
· A well-informed knowledge of the terminology of basic philosophical concepts and of the specific
fundamental concepts relevant to the themes, authors or texts at work in the investigation.
· A clear and effective communication of the exploration undertaken or a precise formulation of the
argument presented.
Moreover, it could be useful to take into account the following.
· The analysis and use of philosophical language should be directly related to, and functional for, the
specific investigation.
· Many expressions belonging to philosophical terminology (definition, concept, thought, experience,
perception, world and so on) are also part of everyday language. A clarification of their use, for
example, the definition of a philosophical context, should be provided when needed for the
investigation.
· Many thought processes implied in philosophy research are directly related to the use of language.
Descriptions of what activities such as “formulate”, “examine” and “define” mean can be found in
the “Glossary of command terms” section in the current Philosophy guide.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion. Students should reflect on the argument that they have
presented and draw conclusions from it.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
The layout, organization, appearance and formal elements of the essay should help the organization and
presentation of the philosophical argument. For instance, the contents list should indicate specific issues
that are relevant to it. The division of the essay into generic “Introduction”, “Development” and#p#分页标题#e#
“Conclusion” sections does not help to identify and elucidate the purpose and structure of a particular
argument. Subdividing the essay into sections with specific names tends to tighten up the structure and
make clearer the transitions in lines of thought.
The bibliography should contain all sources used, with details of the author, title of publication, publisher
and date of publication, which should be in alphabetical order (by author’s family name). Any material
that is not original must be acknowledged.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
The result of a philosophical investigation is the argument that is presented and developed. Therefore,
the abstract must be focused on the argument, its structure and content.
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Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in philosophy essays include the choice of topic
and research question, skillful use of conceptual tools (such as examples), finding adequate resources
(such as theories relevant to an analysis of the research question) and new approaches to familiar
topics.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, in reflection that is thorough and well informed, and in reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question. Furthermore, they can be shown by
means of an honest, open-minded, careful engagement with philosophical ideas that are deemed
to be important, no matter what school or tradition they are derived from.
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Philosophy
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in physics provides students with an opportunity to apply a range of skills while
researching a topic of personal interest in the field of physics. A physics extended essay is characterized
by a particular emphasis on physics within a more general set of scientific criteria. An extended essay in
physics must take the form of a research paper involving a hypothesis or a model, or a critical analysis,
that demonstrates argumentation, comparison, or the extraction of relevant information or data.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured piece of writing that effectively addresses
a particular issue or research question and arrives at a particular, and preferably personal, conclusion.#p#分页标题#e#
Choice of topic
It is important that the extended essay has a clear emphasis on physics and is not more closely related
to another subject. A physics extended essay should, therefore, have a basis in physical theory and
emphasize the essential nature of the subject. An extended essay in an interdisciplinary area such as
materials science will, if registered as a physics extended essay, be judged on its physics content, not its
chemical content.
The purpose of the essay is not principally to inform the reader about a specific topic, nor should it be a
summary of the latest discoveries in physics. The student must be personally involved with the subject
matter and not simply an informant. The topic should represent a challenge for the student.
Some topics may be unsuitable for investigation because of safety issues. For example, experiments
involving dangerous or carcinogenic substances, radioactive materials, lasers, microwaves, UV light, noise
or heavy equipment should be avoided unless adequate safety apparatus and qualified supervision are
available. Typical experiments done in class, not suitable in themselves as a basis for an extended essay,
can be a source of good topics.
Students should choose a well-focused, well-defined and realistic topic that allows for an in-depth
treatment. Broad or complex survey topics, for example, investigations into black holes, gravity, time
machines, the Higgs particle or the fate of the universe, will not permit the student to discuss conflicting
ideas and theories, nor to produce an in-depth personal analysis within the word limit. Also, by definition,
some topics are not suitable for an extended essay in physics, which is an experimental science with a
specific approach and techniques.
Students should also be careful to avoid research topics that go beyond the boundaries of conventional
science, for example, areas that are more related to metaphysics or pseudo-science. Examples of this
could include the unknown forces of pyramids, physics and God’s existence, and extrasensory perception.
Details—subject specific
Physics
140 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
The following examples of titles for physics extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “Orbital determination of a minor planet” is better than “Gravitation”.
· “The variation in resistance of a wire subjected to different strains” is better than “Measuring the
resistivity of different materials”.
· “The use of interference fringes to measure small displacements” is better than “Making interference
patterns”.
· “The range variation of water flowing out of a hole in a container” is better than “An application of#p#分页标题#e#
Bernoulli’s principle”.
· “The impact of the resistivity of the metal of a pipe and the pipe’s wall thickness on the terminal
velocity of a cylindrical magnet falling down the metallic pipe” is better than “Eddy currents”.
Moreover, it may help if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could be as follows.
Title Black hole at the centre of the Milky Way
Is it possible to determine the presence of a black hole at the centre of
the Milky Way?
Research question
A data-based approach is taken. From the astronomical observations of
a star following a Keplerian orbit around a compact radio source, the
mass of a supermassive black hole is determined. The level of uncertainty
is appreciated.
Approach
Title The wine bottle as a Helmholtz resonator
Research question Do wine bottles of different shapes behave as Helmholtz resonators?
An experimental approach is taken. The theoretical model is reviewed
with specific emphasis on the physical and geometrical parameters
determining the resonant frequency. By blowing across the opening of
the bottle, a resonant frequency is produced, picked up and measured.
The accuracy of the model is determined.
Approach
Title The deflection of starlight by the Sun’s gravitational field
What will be the angular deflection of starlight by the Sun if Newton’s
Universal Law of Gravitation is applied?
Research question
A theoretical (numerical) approach is taken. Assuming a corpuscular
model of light, the motion of these corpuscles moving at the speed of
light in a gravitational field is followed by iteration. The results are
compared to the one derived from general relativity.
Approach
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Title The efficiency of electromagnetic damping
Is the efficiency of electromagnetic damping of a moving glider a function
of the initial kinetic energy of the glider?
Research question
An experimental approach is taken. The energy budget of a coil-carrying
glider going through magnetic braking on a linear air track is followed
by comparing the mechanical energy lost to the thermal energy generated
in the coil.
Approach
However, the aim of the essay may also be presented as a statement or as a hypothesis rather than an
actual question. Some examples are as follows.
· The objective is to establish theoretically the proportionality existing between the terminal velocity
of a cylindrical magnet falling down a metallic pipe and the resistivity of the metal of the pipe as well#p#分页标题#e#
as the pipe’s wall thickness. An experimental investigation follows.
· Water waves are observed in a long and narrow trough and their speeds are measured. It is assumed
that, for shallow water, the speed of the wave will be proportional to the square root of the depth
of the water and independent of the wavelength.
· The objective is to establish the relationship between power and temperature for an incandescent
lamp.
· A retractable ballpoint will be used to test the law of energy conservation.
· The objective is to establish an acoustic model of the concert flute.
In first-hand experimental essays, students should choose sensible and feasible experiments that do not
require extensive lengths of time for the construction of apparatus. Highly sophisticated instruments are
not required: in some cases, they can impose limitations and hinder the understanding of a phenomenon.
Successful experiments will produce relatively rapidly the data necessary for a sound analysis.
Ideally, students should carry out the research for the essay solely under the direction of the school
supervisor. Some of the best essays have been written by students investigating relatively simple
phenomena using standard school apparatus, and this approach is to be encouraged. Regardless of
where, or under what circumstances, the research is carried out, students must provide evidence in the
essay of their personal contribution to the research approach and to the selection of the methods used.
Essays based on research carried out by the student at a research institute or university, under the guidance
of an external supervisor, must be accompanied by a covering letter outlining the nature of the supervision
and the level of guidance provided.
The domains of aerodynamics and hydrodynamics are theoretically and experimentally very demanding;
for example, the construction of wind tunnels can be problematic and time-consuming. A topic within
these domains must be chosen and defined very carefully.
Physics applied to sports can be a source of excellent topics, although the acquisition of sufficient valid
data can sometimes be problematic. The relevant biomechanics can be overwhelming.
Students must choose a research question that can be treated effectively within the word limit and is
not of a trivial nature.
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Treatment of the topic
Every extended essay in physics will involve some research into the background or theory of the topic
selected. However, extended essays in physics may then vary. Students may choose any of the following
approaches.
· Experimental: design and implementation of an experiment, then personal collection and analysis
of the data.
· Data-based: location and extraction of raw or processed data, not collected directly by the student,#p#分页标题#e#
which is then further refined and analysed.
· Theoretical: development of a quantitative or semi-quantitative description of some physical
phenomenon, exercise of the model, predictions about its behaviour and limitations.
· Survey: formulation of a cohesive, ordered, analytical and supported (qualitative and quantitative)
discussion of the topic.
· Combination: some combination of the approaches listed above.
All extended essays in physics should summarize the scope and limitations of the work undertaken. This
should always include analysis of any experimental design, uncertainties and precision of data,
mathematical techniques, relationships with theoretical models, and reliability and quality of sources.
The essay content and development should directly evaluate the research question, possibly in the form
of a test of a hypothesis.
Experimental essays allow students to display their own critical thinking skills in a more discernible
fashion, but experimental work is not a requirement for a physics extended essay. However, a theoretical
dimension must be part of any empirical investigation.
Any experimental work that forms part of a physics extended essay should be adequately described to
allow the work to be repeated by others, who should achieve similar outcomes and conclusions. Particular
care should be taken with data obtained through secondary sources. For data-based essays, the location
and reliability of the sources needed should be considered at the start of the planning stage. Students
must scrutinize such data and the experimental design with the same care that they would apply to data
that they have collected themselves. A careful scrutiny of research procedures could reveal serious flaws
in experimental design or in data collection that invalidate the results in whole or in part, or at least limit
the interpretation.
A purely empirical investigation relating two or three variables in the absence of any theoretical foundation
is not satisfactory—for example, an investigation involving only a mathematical analysis of the gathered
data relating the index of refraction of an Epsom salt solution to the salt concentration. In such an essay,
the student would be expected to investigate the theoretical physics relating the index of refraction to
the concentration.
If a computer simulation of a theoretical model is used, the algorithms developed or employed should
be thoroughly analysed and simulation outcomes compared with reality to check their validity. For essays
involving a theoretical model (computer simulation) describing a physical phenomenon, the planning
should include the initial postulates, the key steps in the running of the model and the simulation
outcomes gathered. Charts or code fragments may be used in the body of the essay to illustrate how the
model was translated into software, but the programs themselves should be placed in the appendix.#p#分页标题#e#
Each line of code of a program fragment included in the body of the essay should count as two words
towards the word limit. The focus of any extended essay that uses a computer to build and exercise
models, or to analyse data, must be on the discipline of physics, not the software.
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In theoretical, data-based or survey essays, an evaluation of the quality and reliability of the literature
sources used must be part of the essay. Students must have read enough about the topic to make a value
judgment about the reliability of the sources. This can be achieved by researching secondary sources or
by performing their own calculations. Students should not hesitate to discuss conflicting ideas and
present their own opinions with their own arguments. In survey or theoretical types of essays, proper
planning should involve interrogating source material in light of the research question, so that the views
of other scientists are used to support the student's own argument, and not as a substitute for that
argument. It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge a statement by a scientist, in reference to the
topic being studied, instead of simply agreeing with it, where there is evidence to support such a challenge.
Analysis must complement data or information and not simply repeat it, while an interpretation should
be deduced logically from the data or information. Unfounded, far-fetched extrapolation should be
avoided and shortcomings recognized. The discussion should not be a rewording of results; it should
generate a solid interpretation of the results to be compared to published research on the topic.
Absolute reliance on textbooks and the Internet is discouraged and no extended essay in physics should
be based exclusively on such sources. Textbooks should be consulted only insofar as they may stimulate
original ideas, provide models of disciplined, structured and informed approaches, and encourage direct
and personal involvement with the essay topic. If students make use of Internet-based sources, they
should do so critically and circumspectly in full awareness of their potential unreliability. There are ways
to verify the credibility of sources and a librarian could advise about this.
Introduction to the essay
In the introduction, it is usually appropriate to identify the relevant principles of physics. For example,
the understanding of the motion of a cylindrical magnet falling inside a copper pipe requires the
application and integration of the Laws of Electromagnetic Induction and Newton’s Laws of Motion.
Students are expected to show that they are able to identify completely the relevant theory in the context
of the research question and can apply it correctly. In the previous example, a brief qualitative description
of the forces acting on the falling magnet and their possible variations along its path will achieve this#p#分页标题#e#
goal. If a historical set-up is appropriate, it should be restricted and focused rather than general and
exhaustive. Some topics require some background foreign to physics—for example, physics applied to
sports or archeology. In such cases, only the essential non-physics information should be provided in the
introduction. If it is considered necessary that more information should be included, then the appropriate
place for it is the appendix.
In the introduction, the student must also show why the topic is worthy of investigation. The opportunity
or potential for creativity and initiative is a measure of the significance (importance) and worthiness of
the topic chosen. Some topics may be unsuitable because the outcome is already well known and
documented in standard textbooks, and the student may not be able to show any personal input.
Presentation
It is difficult to be precise about the 4,000-word limit in physics as most essays include tables, graphs,
figures, diagrams, equations and calculations. Examiners will follow the spirit of the word limit so that
an essay that is excessive in length will be penalized. For experimental or data-based essays, a typical
layout will follow the order of tables of data, graphs, analysis and conclusion. If the investigation is divided
into two or more parts, it is recommended to repeat this order for each part with a brief overview
conclusion presented at the end of the essay. If data and graphs are too numerous, they should be
included in an appendix. However, it is essential that the reader is able to follow the development of the
essay without having to refer to the appendix. The core of the essay should be complete and stand on
its own, with the collection of all tables, graphs and diagrams inserted in the order required to allow for
an easy reading and understanding.
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Tables, graphs and diagrams should be numbered so specific references can be made to them in the
body of the essay. It is not necessary to include an appendix, but where one is used, it should not be
done as an attempt to evade the 4,000-word limit. It is good practice to show one example of the
calculations of numerical results, including the calculation of errors. The components of the table of
contents should be made specific to the topic of the essay. A generic list of contents such as “theory”,
“experiment”, “data”, “analysis”, “conclusion” and “bibliography” is not satisfactory. References should
appear as footnotes in the body of the essay, independently of the bibliography. However, general
knowledge such as Newton’s Law of Gravitation, definitions, or the Doppler effect does not require any
reference.
An extended essay in physics could include elements typically part of the report of an experimental#p#分页标题#e#
investigation within the internal assessment documentation. However, the formal presentation of the
extended essay is different from a laboratory report. For example, an annotated diagram can be included
in the essay but an exhaustive list of equipment should not. Students are encouraged to look up scientific
papers or articles published in recognized physics journals or magazines.
Academic level
Essays in theoretical physics should cover material extended from the Diploma Programme physics course
covered in the classroom—for example, “The application of Huygens’ principle to a single slit using the
iterative method”, or material from outside the course—for example, “The impact of solar light pressure
on an orbiting satellite”.
Essays in experimental physics should cover topics not included in the school course’s regular
investigations—for example, “Are the tiny droplets produced by the impact of raindrops on a hard surface
electrically charged?”.
Sophisticated computer interface equipment should be used as a tool, not an end in itself. The reliability
and limitations of such equipment should be looked at. A simple use of simulation programs would not
necessarily reveal a student’s creativity and mastery of physics—for example, the simple measurements
of the harmonics of a stringed musical instrument by an electronic probe would reveal little of the
student’s intellectual abilities.
Abstract
Students are encouraged to look at abstracts of scientific research papers published in recognized physics
journals or magazines.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. Whichever way it is formulated, the research question must
be:
· appropriate to physics as a science; centred on physics and not on peripheral issues such as the
history of physics or social implications of discoveries in physics
· identified clearly and set out prominently in the introduction.
An effective treatment within the word limit requires a narrow and well-focused topic.
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Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here. The relevant principles of physics should be
situated in the context of the topic.
The introduction should not be seen as an opportunity for padding out an essay with a lengthy account
of the context of the physics involved.
Criterion C: investigation
The way in which the investigation is planned will depend on the approach chosen by the student.#p#分页标题#e#
However, the plan should include the relevant theory as well as an appreciation of the uncertainties or
limitations inherent to techniques and apparatus.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The knowledge and understanding demonstrated in a physics essay should extend from the Diploma
Programme physics course or laboratory. The fundamental knowledge acquired in the classroom could
be applied to a new physical situation that requires an interpretation of this knowledge. A purely empirical
approach seriously limits the level of knowledge and understanding of the physics related to a topic, and
consequently should be avoided.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. For example, it is not sufficient to write “From the graph we can see that…”.
Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not usually advance an argument
and should be avoided.
A well-organized and well-presented essay will enhance the clarity of an argument.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Physicists use mathematics as a tool. This tool should not replace the relevant physics, nor become the
goal itself rather than the instrument used to reach the goal. The student should show an understanding
of the statistics and mathematical relationships produced automatically by software programs. A complete
and solid understanding of the intrinsic limitations of an investigation, and their implications for the
conclusions reached, is essential. It should be shown in some way that a given proposed limitation,
possibly procedural, does have the expected impact on the final results and conclusion, for example, in
the case where experimental results are compared to standard values. A proper manipulation of significant
digits and uncertainties, including uncertainty in the mean and in graphs, is expected, as well as an
understanding of propagation of errors.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Scientific language must be used throughout the essay. Students should be encouraged to read articles
from recognized scientific journals or magazines to learn about the proper style, organization and
presentation of a scientific paper. The essential quality of the language relates to exactness and precision,
and typical expressions, such as “function of” or “proportional to”, carry specific meanings. A curve on a
graph cannot be qualified as “exponential” or “quadratic” without proper analysis. Any symbols used
must be clearly and fully identified in the context of the situation; for example, writing “t for time” would#p#分页标题#e#
not be sufficient but writing “t for time during which the magnetic force is applied” would be precise
and helpful.
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Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
The conclusion should reveal the impact on the final results of the investigation of uncertainties in
experimental data, the limitations of a model or of an experimental design, or the validity of sources.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in physics essays include the choice of topic and
research question, and locating and using a wide range of sources, including some that may have
been little used previously or generated for the study.
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Originality and creativity: In physics, these include looking inquisitively at the surrounding world,
innovation in experimental procedures and equipment to measure variable parameters, an inventive
approach to physical analysis or to classical topics, as well as the construction of imaginative theoretical
models.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in politics provides students with an opportunity to undertake an in-depth study of
a specific political question. The outcome of the study should represent a focused, effectively organized#p#分页标题#e#
analysis that addresses the question and investigates its specifically political dimension.
Choice of topic
Politics is a discipline that can draw reference from almost any human activity and politics essays can
quite legitimately be concerned with varied activities from United Nations peacekeeping to the decisions
of local school authorities. The key consideration in judging the quality of essays in such a diverse field
is the extent to which they deal with political institutions, use the tools of political science (broadly
defined) and address the concerns of relevant political theories.
The choice of topic must be such that all the various assessment criteria can be satisfied. Students are
advised to avoid topics that are too broad in scope to permit an in-depth study within the prescribed
word limit. A limited, specific topic, thoroughly researched and with a clear focus, is preferable to a broad
topic that can only be examined superficially.
The importance of choosing a topic that permits the gathering and sorting of relevant information, and
that connects with broader political concerns, cannot be overstated. This will prevent the content of the
essay from being merely superficial or generalized, or, worse still, tangential to the discipline of politics.
If these matters are given due formal consideration, then the selection of a suitable topic, as well as the
structure and presentation of the essay, can be addressed.
This important point is best illustrated by example. The question “Is the US government losing the drugs
war?” is not well formulated but could, nevertheless, form the basis of a sound politics extended essay.
It should focus on the nature of the problem in broad political terms, analyse the policy-making machinery,
and consider the role of government institutions and the part played by pressure groups and public
opinion. It should discuss the problems within the framework of relevant political theories and reach its
conclusion on the basis of these investigations. An essay that simply gave a detailed account of the
prevalence of various forms of drug abuse and showed how drugs have an impact on people’s lives,
however well written and researched, would be tangential to politics.
The following examples of titles for politics extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
Details—subject specific
Politics
148 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
· “The politician as representative: an assessment of the effectiveness of a local politician in representing
local interests” is better than “A week in the life of a politician”.
· “The political debate over the death penalty in the USA” is better than “The rights and wrongs of#p#分页标题#e#
capital punishment”.
· “The concept of ‘the dictatorship of the proletariat’ in Marxism-Leninism” is better than
“Marxism-Leninism”.
· “US intervention in Grenada: a study of the War Powers Act and the war-making powers of the US
president” is better than “The US president and US foreign policy”.
· “A comparison of the nationalist vote in Scotland and Wales in the British general elections of 2005”
is better than “The British general election of 2005”.
Treatment of the topic
As the previous examples illustrate, topics for extended essays in politics may be drawn from any one of
the various areas of the discipline, such as political thought, political institutions, international or
comparative politics, or political behaviour. Whatever area is chosen, it should be one of genuine interest
to them.
Essays about local politics (for example, an investigation into the work of some aspect of local government
or local interest group) are acceptable, provided that they are approached with sufficient methodological
rigour and are not largely anecdotal. In such a study, relevant theoretical perspectives on representation
could be considered.
Ideas for topics may be stimulated by current events, but essays should move beyond the mere description
of such events. Comparative perspectives may offer another useful approach, but a clear focus must be
maintained if the topic is not to become unwieldy or overly descriptive. Theoretical perspectives will also
enhance such studies.
It is helpful for the student to consider how the study will conclude before beginning to write it. The
conclusion must be seen to provide a comprehensive judgment on the inquiry and to follow logically
from the argument. If the student has a clear idea of the conclusion, it becomes easier to construct a
logically consistent argument. For example, if the research question is whether a decision by a local
education board was democratic, it will help if, having done the background research, the student decides
on the conclusion before writing the study. It would naturally follow that the structure of the essay would
incorporate a discussion of those theories of democracy that led the student to this conclusion. In this
way, the study would be stronger both structurally and thematically.
The use of clear, relevant diagrams, graphs and/or statistical tables should be encouraged where
appropriate. Where these are derived from other sources, these sources must be acknowledged.
Studies of traditional political ideas or theories, or of past events or issues, are unlikely to involve the
major use of primary sources. In other studies in the discipline of politics, however, the use of primary
sources, such as interviews, and newspaper and documentary sources, is strongly recommended. The#p#分页标题#e#
Internet is an almost universal source of information today and it is often invaluable, but it is important
to recognize that secondary sources, especially established treatments of the themes of the study, remain
crucial. Indeed, if a student does not refer to established secondary sources that deal with the principal
themes, the study might be deemed to be unsatisfactory and could be tangential to the discipline of
politics.
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Some examples of possible topics and approaches include the following.
Topic Is the US government losing the drugs war?
Research question Is it politically possible for the US government to win the drugs war?
An investigation into the pressures and constraints on government
institutions and agencies, within the framework of relevant political
theories. A catalogue of the social consequences of drug misuse would
not be appropriate.
Approach
Topic Does the British Conservative party have a future?
Which social and political values should a modern British Conservative
party seek to conserve?
Research question
An assessment of the relevance to modern British politics of the values
that Conservatism has traditionally championed and a judgment on how
(if at all) they should be amended. Students would refer to traditional
Conservative theorists and to modern quality journalism. Interviews with
local and national activists would be helpful. An essay that simply
described the problems that the party faces in seeking to increase its
share of the vote would not be appropriate.
Approach
Topic Why the US policy on Iraq is failing
Research question Account for the domestic unpopularity of the US-led invasion of Iraq.
An investigation into the changing balance of popularity of the invasion
and its aftermath, primarily through the use of survey material. Students
would need to discuss the issue of international legality and the attitude
of other governments, and, finally, to comment on the difficulty of
achieving the invasion’s aims. In such an essay, balance would be
important: an essay that constituted a selection of partisan Internet
articles would not be appropriate.
Approach
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be appropriate to the particular subject in which the essay is submitted. In
politics, the subject matter must lend itself to assessment through the criteria specifically appropriate
to politics. Although the focus of the essay can be best defined as a question, it may also take the form
of a hypothesis or proposition.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance of the topic, why it is worthy of investigation
and how the research question relates to existing knowledge on the topic. The student’s personal#p#分页标题#e#
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
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Criterion C: investigation
Students should aim to make use of both primary and secondary sources as appropriate. Source material
should not simply be repeated but should be deployed subtly, or even challenged, in a balanced way. It
should always be used in support of a student’s argument, not as a substitute for such argument. The
Internet can be an invaluable source of information but students are strongly advised neither to use it
to the exclusion of any other source material, nor to assume that information obtained from web sites
is necessarily accurate or unbiased. Students are strongly advised to consult the relevant established
texts.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Knowledge and understanding here relates specifically to the political/historical context of the subject
of the essay, and to the political institutions, actors and theories relevant to the area of study.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument and reference
to accepted sources. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not usually
advance an argument and should be avoided. It is crucial, when constructing an argument in politics, to
seek to achieve a balance, by presenting conflicting views in an impartial way before reaching a conclusion.
Lack of balance in a politics essay constitutes a flaw.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
The employment of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate to politics will raise an essay from a largely
descriptive account to a truly incisive and illuminating one. Students should bear in mind that such an
account would answer not only the formal questions—such as who, when, and where—but also the
more demanding and interesting questions of how and, above all, why.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
It is expected that students will be familiar with the basic vocabulary that is appropriate to politics, such
as the executive, judicial and legislative arms of government. They should know that contested or
ambiguous terms may need to be defined. It is not expected that they will use various pieces of specialized
jargon from little-known sub-disciplines within politics, such as game theory or public choice theory.
Criterion H: conclusion
Students should reflect on the research that they have presented and draw conclusions from that research.
New information should not be introduced into the conclusion, although the identification of new#p#分页标题#e#
questions arising from the research is encouraged. Students should avoid conclusions that are perfunctory;
to be effective, conclusions should be consistent with the arguments developed in the essay and provide
a synthesis of those arguments.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
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It is important that students give proper attention to the formal layout and organization of the essay,
and follow the prescription set out in the general guidelines. Careful recording of the relevant details of
all evidence significant to the research question is necessary so that complete references, including page
numbers, can be provided in the essay. The bibliography should contain all sources used, with details of
the author, title of publication, publisher and date of publication, which should be in alphabetical order
(by author’s family name). Tables and charts should appear in the body of the essay, as close as possible
to their first reference. All material that is not original must be acknowledged.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Students are required to set out clearly their research question or hypothesis, and explain how they
approached their investigation and the conclusions that they reached.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in politics essays include the choice of topic and
research question, locating and using sources that have been little used previously, and new
approaches to traditional topics (based on a re-evaluation of accepted theories).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
focused research, of thorough and well-informed reflection, and of reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
152 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all#p#分页标题#e#
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in psychology provides students with an opportunity to investigate an area within
the field of psychology that is based upon personal interest, and which may well go beyond the Diploma
Programme psychology course. Students are able to pursue actively a research question that will develop
their analytical and communication skills, and their understanding of behaviour. At the same time, the
extended essay aims to introduce students to the excitement of academic discovery.
The current Psychology guide defines the nature of the subject as “the systematic study of behaviour and
experience”. Students should have a well-developed understanding of what falls within the scope of
psychology when they are developing their topic. Psychology involves studying the behaviour of human
as well as non-human animals. It has its own specialist terms, methods and literature. It is essential for
students undertaking an extended essay in psychology to have a reasonable understanding of the subject
and its methodologies.
Psychology is not a “residual” category for essays that do not fit into any other extended essay subject.
Students must choose topics that lend themselves to psychological investigation and analysis, and must
carefully consider their choice of topic in terms of the assessment criteria.
Choice of topic
An extended essay in psychology allows students to investigate a topic of personal interest in a systematic
manner. The essay should be based on a well-focused research question that the student attempts to
answer throughout the course of the essay. The essay should be considered more of an investigative,
analytical argument than a research hypothesis to be uncovered by use of research methods in a formal
psychological study. Data collection and research methods, such as experiments, surveys, observations
and case studies, are not appropriate for a psychology extended essay, and should not form part of the
student's project.
Psychology is a broad field that has many subsets and specialties, providing a wide range of possible
topics. Past experience strongly suggests that personal interest plays an important role in the success of
an essay and it is recommended that students consider their own personal interests, such as sport or
child development, as a starting point in the process. After selecting a field of interest, students can then
consider areas of investigation within that field in order to narrow the scope of their essay and research
question. For example, a student might be highly interested in commercial aviation. Many large commercial
airlines employ psychologists to investigate pilot performance and factors such as stress or emergency
management. A research question that may follow from this could be “To what extent has research on#p#分页标题#e#
stress with airline pilots improved airline safety standards?”. Additional examples are provided later in
this section.
Details—subject specific
Psychology
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The topic selected need not be from the current Psychology guide. In fact, some of the most interesting,
engaging and successful extended essays are not necessarily based solely on material learned as part of
the psychology course. Essays confined to the guide often produce descriptive, dispassionate accounts
of classic psychological research. Supervisors do not need to have detailed knowledge of the student's
topic: this is a less important factor in topic selection than availability of resources, student interest and
the scope of the essay.
Topics that generally fall within the area labelled as “pop psychology” or “self-help” are usually not
appropriate for the extended essay. As noted in the definition, psychology is a systematic study.
Psychologists conduct research studies and develop theories in their attempt to understand behaviour
and experience. Psychology extended essays must be supported with careful and appropriate citation
of relevant theories and/or studies within psychology. This implies that the best resources are academic
and psychological research journals and texts. Anecdotal support or references from popular publications
do not form an appropriate base from which to develop an extended essay in psychology. Additionally,
popular topics such as eating disorders, dysfunctional behaviour (such as schizophrenia and depression)
and forensic psychology pose a challenge to students unless they have a tightly focused research question.
These are very ambitious topics that need far more time and experience than students have at their
disposal.
The research question must be focused and provide direction for a psychological argument, issue or
topic. Topics that are general in nature inevitably lead to a descriptive and superficial recounting of what
can be found in many resources, rather than the development of an argument that attempts to answer
a specific question. A more focused question leads to a more tightly developed essay that makes
appropriate use of psychological research as the basis for a reasoned argument. While the research
question does not need to be phrased as a question, to encourage focus within the essay, it is often
helpful to the student if the research question is thought about as an actual question itself. In this way,
students can ask themselves “Have I answered this question?”. It is also appropriate for the title to be
phrased similarly to the research question, which, again, refocuses the development of the essay.
The choice of topic is best described as a logical process that starts with a field of psychology that is of#p#分页标题#e#
personal interest to the student. This choice may be further refined to a topic of study within the broader
field. From this decision, a research question is developed that may best be constructed in the form of a
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates the approach that is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could be the following.
Student interests Football: "Choking" under pressure during an important match
Field of psychology Sport psychology
Topic Arousal and athletic performance
What levels of psychological arousal are most effective for players in team
sports?
Research question
Arousal levels and their effects on athletic performance have been
subjected to many studies. One of several comparative approaches could
be used, for example, qualitative and quantitative methods, collectivist
and individualist cultures, male and female. These approaches could
include reference to gender, methods, ethics or culture. It is suggested
that students consider the advantages of confining their research to one
specific sport for which they have enthusiasm and, preferably, personal
experience in performing.
Approach
154 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Psychology
Student interests Perception, culture, web site design
Field of psychology Cognitive psychology
Topic Cultural differences in perception and eye movement patterns
How can findings from psychological research on perception differences
between Asians and Americans be applied to web site design?
Research question
Research must be conducted from secondary sources to establish the
extent of perceptual differences that are claimed to exist between the
two cultures. How are findings from relevant studies applied to strategies
that involve visual perception and eye movement patterns, and what
industries use this information? Specifically, how do international web site
designers interpret these findings in designing their web sites?
Approach
Student interests Physiotherapy: Recovering from injury
Field of psychology Learning
Topic Learning physical skills
To what extent does immediate feedback, employing digitized moving
images of the self, help in the learning process in developing a physical
skill?
Research question
The focus is on re-educating the leg muscles of a patient learning to walk
again while recovering from a chronic leg injury. By focusing on one of
these examples or similar physical actions, the student may consider the
advantages of digitized software that allows the patient to have
immediate feedback on their movement. On a split screen, this action
can be compared to that of a perfect model. The movement can also be#p#分页标题#e#
compared in a similar way with “stickmen” images on a four-way split
screen. The student might consider how this learning method compares
to traditional coaching or training, and consider ethical implications. The
methodologies used to interpret the efficacy of each learning strategy
could be evaluated.
Approach
The choice of topic is crucial for achieving a high mark for the extended essay. Choosing the topic needs
a period of thoughtful reflection where consideration is given, even at this early stage, to the potential
argument, analysis and evaluation that may develop over the course of writing the essay. Topics that do
not lend themselves well to analysis, evaluation or debate are unlikely to be the best choices for a student.
Treatment of the topic
Students submitting extended essays in psychology must be fully aware that the discipline has its own
unique terms, methods, ethical standards and evaluative commentary. Students should not attempt to
prepare an extended essay in psychology if they have not studied the subject formally. The type of
knowledge and analytical skills required for a psychology extended essay are best developed through
direct learning experiences derived from the Diploma Programme psychology course. Schools where
psychology is not taught must be aware that students who submit extended essays in psychology with
no formal exposure to the subject risk earning very low marks.
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Psychology
Specific reference to relevant psychology concepts, theories and studies must be integrated throughout
each extended essay; these form the basis for the development of an argument in response to the research
question. Essays that take a common sense or anecdotal approach will not earn high marks. Students
should incorporate relevant psychological research, and demonstrate critical awareness and understanding
of the material. Analysis should go beyond description or recitation of published material and include
original analysis by the student.
An important skill that is developed throughout the psychology course is that of evaluative commentary
and argument. One of the aims of all group 3 subjects is that students develop an understanding of the
contestable nature of the content, as well as a toleration of uncertainty, that often comes from studying
the behaviour of individuals and societies. Extended essays submitted in psychology should also
demonstrate such understanding. Research and claims should be carefully evaluated to develop a
well-rounded understanding of the topic being investigated. When students make assertions in their
extended essays, these should always be supported by evidence that is drawn from psychological theories
or studies. The current Psychology guide includes a framework for evaluation that trains students to#p#分页标题#e#
address cultural, ethical, gender or methodological considerations that may affect the interpretation of
behaviour resulting from a particular study or theory. Comparative analysis might also be an evaluative
strategy relevant for inclusion in an extended essay. Students should keep these considerations in mind
when selecting a topic, defining a research question and developing an argument.
The IBO has published a set of ethical guidelines for the internal assessment component of the psychology
course. While the requirements of a psychology extended essay are very different from those of the
internal assessment, the ethical guidelines also apply to this project. Students and supervisors share the
responsibility of ensuring that the extended essay does not breach established ethical guidelines. Many
topics within psychology are sensitive and personal in nature, and careful consideration should be given
to all possible ethical issues before students embark on the process of developing their essay.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the essay.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question may be written in the form of a question, proposition or statement. It should be
focused on a topic that is clearly relevant to psychology, deals with behaviour and is able to be addressed
consistently throughout the extended essay.
Criterion B: introduction
This section should place the research question in the context of existing knowledge and understanding
of the topic. The student’s personal experience or views should not appear in this section. Previous
psychological studies that can be related to the research question should be considered. The studies
that are introduced here may be generally supportive but they are unlikely to answer the research question
in an entirely satisfactory manner. It is part of the student’s task to identify strengths, weaknesses and
omissions of past work, and to show how his or her essay could help to resolve some of the problems
that have been identified.
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Criterion C: investigation
There is a wide range of resources available for questions that are likely to be raised in extended essays
related to psychology. These include textbooks, academic journals, films, television, radio, newspapers
and Internet-based sources. Film, television, radio, newspapers and Internet-based sources should be
treated with considerable caution since the material they contain may be neither accurate nor valid. The
essay should present findings and theories from these sources in an evaluative context and students
should not necessarily accept their findings at face value. A healthy and informed scepticism should be#p#分页标题#e#
maintained towards material from film, television, radio, newspapers and Internet-based sources, until
authoritative judgment allows their findings or theories to become accepted. Although the argument
presented in the essay may be supported by the student’s own observations, the presentation or analysis
of such material should be used for illustrative purposes only and should form no more than a very minor
part of the evidence used.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Evidence and findings from empirical studies and their related theories should be an integral part of
extended essays for psychology. Such material may refer to human or non-human animals and their
associated behaviours. Where appropriate, students should draw on cultural, ethical, gender and
methodological considerations; they should show how these aspects may affect the interpretation of
the research question that is the focus of the essay.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
The research question should be the central focus of the argument as it is developed throughout the
essay. As the argument is constructed, it often creates conflict between varying theories and findings
from studies. The student should explain and analyse these different views and marshal those essential
points that support the argument that is being advanced. It is the task of the student to persuade the
reader of the reasons for, and validity of, his or her view. This is best accomplished by using a logical
approach where successive salient points are built up, one upon the other.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
Demanding cognitive effort is needed to apply analytical and evaluative factors created by the student.
The analysis and evaluation need to be covered in depth since these will lead to the crux of the argument.
There is also an opportunity for the student to use reflexivity—a consideration of his or her own
experiences and views that have contributed to the methods used in the investigation and the
interpretation of points that have arisen.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Psychology is a subject that uses its terminology in a specific manner and students are expected to show
this in their essays. Students who have not studied psychology as a specific part of an academic course
are strongly urged to become thoroughly acquainted with the language used by psychologists and how
it is applied within the discipline.
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion is a synthesis of the argument that has preceded it. It is the end point of a logical process
that has been established by employing a succession of psychological studies and theories to justify the
case that has been presented.
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Psychology
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include intellectual initiative, insight, and breadth and
depth of understanding. Ways of demonstrating such qualities include:
· choice of a relevant research question that extends the student’s thinking but is also feasible within
the time available
· location and judicious use of resources
· analysis and evaluation of psychological material to produce salient points for the argument
· use of a reflexive approach that involves the views and imagination of the student to make a unique
contribution to understanding the topic.
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These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in social and cultural anthropology provides students with an opportunity to develop
an awareness of what constitutes a distinctively anthropological approach to the organization of human
life in society and culture. Extended essays should be based on published ethnographic research. Students
are expected to demonstrate, in the presentation of the research, their knowledge and understanding
of the methods and aims of social and cultural anthropology.
Choice of topic
Social and cultural anthropology is not a “residual” category for essays that do not fit into any other
extended essay subject. Students must choose topics that lend themselves to anthropological investigation,
and must carefully consider their choice of topic in terms of the assessment criteria.
An extended essay in social and cultural anthropology should analyse a topic from a theoretical or
comparative perspective, based on the student’s own original analysis and on a solid understanding of
the theoretical issues concerned. Students who intend to tackle comparative projects must be aware
that research strategies involving two or more societies may call for greater narrowing of the research#p#分页标题#e#
focus than a study in a single society. For example, a comparative analysis of Mexican and US views of
death cannot be conducted successfully in the context of an extended essay because the topic is too
broad. The research would have to be narrowed down by focusing, for example, on specific sub-groups
of each society, as well as on a few well-chosen contrasting points, from which the student would identify
underlying patterns and causes.
Extended essays that address issues in subfields of anthropology other than sociocultural anthropology,
such as archeology, primatology or the study of human evolution, are not appropriate. Extended essays
in linguistic anthropology are acceptable, provided that they demonstrate the student’s ability to analyse
language in its sociocultural context. Students interested in conducting a research project in linguistic
anthropology should be warned that such research frequently presumes a background in both sociocultural
anthropology and linguistics.
Extended essays that seek to find solutions to social problems in an abstract fashion, that consist of
polemic arguments for a particular position, or that present value judgments, are not appropriate. For
example, the research question “Abortion: can one make a decision concerning the life of another human
being?” cannot be analysed from the perspective of social and cultural anthropology.
Details—subject specific
Social and cultural anthropology
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 159
Students must be aware that an emotional or experiential commitment to a particular issue can blunt
their analysis of the topic. Personal commitment must be reinforced with intellectual and academic work,
including explicit reference to what anthropologists have had to say about an issue. For instance,
anthropologists have written a great deal about the role of women in Islam, so an essay that addresses
the issue from a theological interpretation of sacred texts, or from journalistic accounts, will be marked
down unless it frames the discussion within the context of anthropological research on religion and/or
gender in specific societies.
The title of the extended essay must indicate a specific focus and problem, usually with reference to a
specific group. Essay titles that are too general almost inevitably lead to a discussion that is inappropriately
descriptive and superficial. In contrast, more tightly focused essay titles encourage clear expositions of
ethnographic research conducted among specific groups, with an attention to theoretical implications.
The following examples of titles for social and cultural anthropology extended essays are intended as
guidance only. The pairings illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged
rather than broad topics (indicated by the second title).#p#分页标题#e#
· “The Sioux sweat lodge: ethnic revival and New Age appropriations” is better than “Native American
culture”.
· “Transnationalism and the labour market: South Asian workers in the Kuwaiti service industry” is
better than “South Asians in the Middle East”.
· “Youth subculture, style and teenage rebellion: the politics of skateboarding in a French working-class
suburb” is better than “Skateboarding as a hobby”.
Moreover, it may help if the student further defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a research
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could be as follows.
A comparative analysis of the Inupiat and Gwich’in indigenous
peoples of Alaska and their contrasting attitudes towards drilling in
the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge
Topic
What are the cultural, economic and political factors that explain why
one indigenous group supports drilling while another opposes it?
Research question
A comparison is made using published primary and secondary data to
assess the claims and counterclaims made by the two indigenous groups.
The study not only analyses what is stated by the indigenous peoples,
but also assesses their statements in relation to their differing levels of
acculturation and modernization.
Approach
160 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Social and cultural anthropology
Agency and structure: how women are heard through the veil in Lila
Abu-Lughod’s Veiled Sentiments and William C Young’s The Rashaayda
Bedouin
Topic
Do the theoretical concepts of agency and structure suffice to explain
veiling among Muslim women in the two chosen ethnographies?
Research question
A comparison is made of two ethnographies dealing with the veiling of
women. The comparison is theoretically developed by applying the
concepts of structure and agency to understand the functions of veiling.
The argument is then further refined with a counter to the structure and
agency approach to veiling by applying a feminist approach to the
understanding of veiling as revealed in the chosen ethnographies.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
Students must clearly understand that social and cultural anthropology is a discipline with its own goals,
methods and ways of posing questions, and that common sense is no substitute for a background in the
subject. Students must make explicit reference to anthropological concepts and theory, and to their
application in the investigation. Students should not attempt to prepare an extended essay in social and#p#分页标题#e#
cultural anthropology if they have not studied the subject formally. Reading a textbook or consulting an
encyclopedia while writing the extended essay will not compensate for a lack of background knowledge
in the subject. Schools where social and cultural anthropology is not taught must be aware that students
who submit extended essays in social and cultural anthropology with no formal exposure to the subject
risk earning very low marks.
The presentation of anthropological materials must:
· go beyond a superficial description to analyse underlying patterns and causes—it must not merely
summarize others’ research findings
· analyse all selected ethnographic data in their social, cultural, political and historical contexts
· demonstrate a recognition of the methodological problems involved in the collection, evaluation
and presentation of ethnographic data
· make explicit reference to the ethical issues appropriate to the investigation.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be appropriate to the particular subject in which the essay is submitted. In
social and cultural anthropology, this means that it must focus on a question that can be analysed using
the theoretical underpinnings, analytical tools and methods of the discipline.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 161
Social and cultural anthropology
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should relate the research question to existing subject knowledge: the student’s personal
experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
Criterion C: investigation
The investigation may focus on ethnographic materials selected by the student and placed in a comparative
and theoretical context. Students may choose to analyse a topic from a theoretical or comparative
perspective, drawing on published sources, both primary and secondary. Whatever the focus of the
investigation, the student must provide an explicit description of the ethnographic context of the data.
This should include a specific description of the group studied, location, time, social and political context,
and the social and political positions of persons as revealed through their ethnographic accounts. The
essay must place all data in a critical context that will demonstrate awareness of their relationship to
other data that could have been gathered in the same context, and of the extent to which the observer’s
position helped to shape the data. Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the#p#分页标题#e#
local−global dynamics relevant to the ethnographic material they analyse, and of the ethical dimensions
of ethnographic fieldwork.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
The essay should integrate into the discussion clear and explicit evidence of specific and relevant
anthropological reading. It should demonstrate a sound knowledge of anthropological concepts and
theory relevant to the research question that is applied to the materials with a critical perspective. The
essay should explicitly discuss methodological issues related to the collection, analysis and presentation
of the ethnographic data.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument.
Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument to persuade
the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive or narrative accounts that lack analysis do not
usually advance an argument and should be avoided.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
The student should move beyond mere description, and offer anthropologically sound generalizations
and explanations for the data. The essay should include a clear discussion of underlying patterns and
causes of an anthropological nature, and of their relationship to the data.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
Students should be aware of terminology specific to the discipline and be able to use this effectively.
The knowledge that some terms are contested or may change their meaning over time should be
incorporated into the essay where relevant.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
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Social and cultural anthropology
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
Students must provide a section and sub-section structure to their essays, with appropriate informative
headings. Tables and charts should appear in the body of the essay, as close as possible to their first#p#分页标题#e#
reference. Any material that is not original must be carefully acknowledged, with specific attention paid
to the acknowledgment and referencing of quotes.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include intellectual initiative, insight and depth of
understanding. Ways of demonstrating intellectual initiative in social and cultural anthropology include:
· judiciously choosing an appropriate topic and research question
· locating relevant resources
· devising an ethnographic, topic-based comparative or theoretical research project that demonstrates
the rich possibilities of anthropological methods
· applying anthropological imagination to the analysis of the ethnographic material
· providing a layered account of the data that takes into consideration its social, political, economic,
cultural, national and transnational dimensions
· approaching the research in a reflexive manner that identifies its strengths, shortcomings and ethical
dimensions.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 163
Social and cultural anthropology
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in theatre provides students with an opportunity to undertake independent research
into a topic of their choice, to apply a range of skills in order to develop and explore a focused research
question appropriate to theatre in an imaginative and critical way, and to test and validate their research
by considering its effect on the practice of the investigated theatre form.
Choice of topic
Owing to the composite nature of theatre, students may choose to take an interdisciplinary approach in
their research. Whatever approach they choose, it is important to frame an appropriately focused research
question. It is the task of the supervisor to ensure that the research question leads the student along a
path that uses appropriate theatrical sources and that encourages the application of relevant theatrical
concepts, theories or ideas. The essay topic may relate to an area of the Diploma Programme theatre
course, but this is not a requirement and other areas of the subject may be explored. It is important that
the topic reflects the student's particular interest and enthusiasm within the subject area.
The scope of the essay should not be too broad as such essays are rarely successful. The best research
questions are well focused, thus encouraging analysis in depth rather than breadth. It is also important#p#分页标题#e#
that the theatrical context of the essay is clearly established early in the essay. The title of the essay should
clearly indicate the essay's main aims and objectives. It is not always a requirement for extended essays
in theatre to deal with applied research that is practicable in nature. However, even if the student chooses
to explore a purely theoretical topic, a connection between theory and its application in practice should
be clearly noted. The least successful essays are generally those in which theory is completely divorced
from practice; a narrow literary approach must be avoided. For example, if the student chooses to explore
the use of fans in Restoration comedy, the wider cultural context informing the historical and social
meanings behind this convention should be illustrated by a discussion of how it is applied in a production
of a chosen Restoration play.
Absolute reliance on textbooks and web sites is discouraged and no extended essay in theatre should
be based exclusively on either. Both these types of source should be consulted in conjunction with other
relevant research material as support material for the student's own original research. Essays based on
original research require a more personal involvement, which, in turn, encourages a more in-depth study.
A sound methodology, including a bibliography of high-quality research sources, is the foundation of a
good extended essay in theatre. Good sources give the student scope for the type of in-depth analysis
that characterizes the best pieces of work. Essays based entirely on published textbooks rarely score
highly.
Details—subject specific
Theatre
164 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Comparisons between two or more theatrical practices are permissible, but students should be careful
to ensure that the comparisons are valid and are a product of sensitive and objective analysis.
The following give some indication of the possible range of titles, research questions and approaches.
An investigation into the functions of mask in two of Zeami
Motokiyo's plays
Title
What are the main uses and types of mask in Noh drama, and how does
the mask contribute to the creation of a character in Noh?
Research question
Relevant research materials are collected on the history, acting styles and
stage conventions of Noh, and on the types of mask and their uses. The
use of mask in two of Zeami Motokiyo's plays and the significance of
mask for character development in these plays is analysed, and the uses
of mask in the two plays are compared and contrasted.
Approach
Female stereotypes and their performance in a selection of Brecht's
plays
Title
What female stereotypes did Brecht employ in his plays, and how can
these be compared and contrasted in performance, based on an analysis#p#分页标题#e#
of a selection of Brecht's plays?
Research question
Relevant research materials are collected on the types and nature of
female stereotypes Brecht used in his plays. These stereotypes are
explored in relation to the chosen plays' themes and context, and are
compared and contrasted by examining how they may have worked in
production. The possible changes in the fundamental nature and working
of these plays if the use of female roles were changed are explored.
Approach
An examination of Soyinka's use of rhythm in acting, based on an
in-depth exploration of one Soyinka play
Title
How did Soyinka use language rhythms in his plays and how may these
rhythms be applied in production?
Research question
Relevant research materials are collected on Soyinka's use of language
in playwriting. The language rhythms used in Soyinka's plays are analysed
in-depth by investigating the characters' use of language rhythms in one
Soyinka play. The way these rhythms can change/contribute to the play's
meanings, character development and relationships between different
characters in the chosen play is examined.
Approach
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 165
Theatre
Title A study of the effects of the use of fabrics and lighting in The Tempest
How can fabrics and lighting contribute to the creation of magical effects
in a production of Shakespeare's last play?
Research question
In-depth research is carried out into the use of fabrics (in furnishing and
costuming) and lighting in previous productions of The Tempest. There
is a discussion, based on these examples, of how fabrics and lighting
work with other production elements, how they can contribute to the
creation of magical effects and how these affect the readings of the play.
The way that appropriate/inappropriate use of both can affect a
production is examined.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
When the research question has been established, the student should make a research plan. The research
plan should be flexible enough to allow the student to explore the topic in a creative manner. The student
should not be afraid to take risks throughout the research process: originality is encouraged, as is the
employment of a number of different research models.
The emphasis of the extended essay should always be on written analysis, interpretation, evaluation, and
the construction and development of a sound argument. It is vital that the methodology of the essay is
tailored to the research question and allows for an in-depth exploration.
Appropriate resources for an extended essay in theatre must include primary and secondary data, such
as books, newspapers and magazines, interviews, and Internet web sites. The use of other materials such
as sketches, drawings, pictures, plans, photographs, CDs and DVDs is encouraged, but should not#p#分页标题#e#
overwhelm the extended essay to the detriment of the research discourse. Where they are used, they
need to be appropriate to the development and support of the argument. The sources of any such
materials that are not original must be properly acknowledged.
The personal involvement of the student in the extended essay is of paramount importance and this can
become evident through the research path that is followed. The use of active primary source material
(that is, play texts and productions) is encouraged, as well as secondary source material. The research
outcome should always include a link with a practical dimension.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question must be focused, appropriate to theatre, give the essay an appropriate context
and encourage an investigative approach. It may be presented in the form of a question or as a statement
or proposition for discussion. It must be specific and:
· appropriate to the particular aspect and/or area of theatre being explored
· centred on theatre and not on peripheral issues
· stated clearly early in the essay.
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Criterion B: introduction
It is important to place the research question in an appropriate historical, sociocultural and theoretical
context. A clear indication should be given of the reasons why the particular topic was chosen and how
it will be approached. The introduction should be clear and concise, and it should outline the topic, the
scope and the methodology. It should also demonstrate how the topic relates to current theatrical
knowledge and theory. Over-lengthy discourses should be avoided: the introduction should not be seen
as an opportunity for the student to present personal opinions. Such opinions, and arguments for them,
belong in the essay itself.
Criterion C: investigation
It is important that the investigation uses a range of sources of information, such as those listed in the
“Treatment of the topic” section. Where relevant and possible, students may wish to consult theatre
practitioners such as performers, directors, researchers, writers, craftspeople or critics; they may wish to
visit theatres, galleries, museums or theatre companies; or they may even wish to engage with the subject
on a practical level at some point in the research in order to test their hypotheses. Whatever information
is selected, it must be relevant to the topic and should provide the evidence needed to support the
argument.
Good planning of the investigation involves the selection of a suitable methodology, and the collection
and selection of appropriate data. All sources must be clearly acknowledged.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Knowledge and understanding of theoretical background, and an awareness of the academic context#p#分页标题#e#
and its practical consequences, are essential for a good essay. This should be achieved through the
integration of the student's own ideas with current philosophical and theoretical thought, and their
practical application in theatre. The student must demonstrate a contextual understanding of the theatre
practice or tradition that is being researched. The context should be understood as the historical and
sociocultural background that may inform or shape the topic chosen by the student. The nature of the
chosen topic will determine the emphasis given to the different aspects of context mentioned here and
will also determine the direction of the research. Knowledge and understanding of the topic allows the
student to develop a critical understanding of, and personal point of view about, the research findings,
whether they come from primary or secondary sources.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument. Essays
that are largely narrative or descriptive, or that simply state value judgments or personal observations,
will not score highly on this criterion. The best essays develop an argument, backed up with evidence,
to convince the reader of the validity of their findings. The argument may be personal, but at the same
time must remain logical and balanced. Reasoned argument must be the fundamental structural basis
for an extended essay in theatre. The accumulation of research data may form part of the preparation
for the writing of the extended essay but the ability to select relevant elements from this data is a crucial
skill.
Where relevant, the argument should present evidence that leads towards acceptance or rejection of
the original hypotheses. In the context of the investigation of an issue, conflict or problem, bias should
be avoided.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 167
Theatre
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
The student should be able to analyse and evaluate the theatre work, whether this is a scene from a play,
a costume design, a lighting plot or any other aspect that might be part of the chosen topic. The ability
to analyse and evaluate is part of the process through which the student articulates a relationship to the
work and speaks with an individual voice.
It may be that the results of the analysis are unexpected or contrary to the student's initial hypotheses.
Students should not be discouraged by this. Some of the best essays have emerged when students have
had to reconsider and re-evaluate their original ideas, and modify their argument accordingly. Such an
awareness of the need to make constant corrections and to recognize shortcomings is an essential element
of research.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject#p#分页标题#e#
Theatrical terminology must be used accurately and appropriately. Furthermore, the ability to write
clearly and coherently about the chosen topic is an important skill. The inclusion of visual images may
also be a crucial part of the extended essay. These images should be annotated in a detailed and specific
way, as they need to have an illustrative rather than merely decorative function.
Criterion H: conclusion
The conclusion must not introduce any new or extraneous material, nor should it merely repeat the
content of the introduction. The conclusion should synthesize the findings of the investigation and briefly
reiterate the evidence relevant to the research question. It should also state, where relevant, which
hypotheses have been accepted or rejected and why. The hypotheses that have been rejected may be
modified or replaced, suggesting new avenues of investigation.
The conclusion should also critically evaluate the appropriateness of the methodology and acknowledge
any flaws or limitations in the research process. Any unresolved questions that have arisen from the
research should be mentioned at this stage.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
The essay must include a bibliography, and diagrams, photos, pictures or sketches should be attributed
and suitably annotated.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract should clearly state the research question; give a brief account of how the investigation was
carried out, the methods that were used and the types of information that were dealt with; and summarize
the findings as stated in the conclusion.
Criterion K: holistic judgment
This criterion refers to the quality of the student’s response to the research question or the chosen topic.
It rewards intellectual initiative in the choice of research paths, the depth of understanding demonstrated
by the student in reflecting on the findings of the research, and creativity in testing and applying the
research in a practical context.
168 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Theatre
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
An extended essay in visual arts provides students with an opportunity to undertake research in an area#p#分页标题#e#
of the visual arts of particular interest to them.
The outcome of the research should be a coherent and structured piece of writing (with appropriate
illustrations) that effectively addresses a particular issue or research question, appropriate to the visual
arts (broadly defined also to include architecture, design and contemporary forms of visual culture). The
research may be generated or inspired by the student’s direct experience of artwork, craftwork or design,
or interest in the work of a particular artist, style or period. This might be related to the student’s own
culture or another culture. Personal contact with artists, curators and so on is strongly encouraged, as is
the use of local and/or primary sources.
Absolute reliance on textbooks and the Internet is discouraged and no extended essay in visual arts
should be based exclusively on such sources. Textbooks should be consulted only insofar as they may
stimulate original ideas, provide models of disciplined, structured and informed approaches, and encourage
direct and personal involvement with the essay topic.
Choice of topic
Topics that are entirely dependent on summarizing general secondary sources (such as universal art
history textbooks, and encyclopedias), and topics that are likely to lead to an essay that is essentially
narrative or descriptive in nature, should be avoided. Biographical studies of artists must address a
relevant issue or research question and arrive at a particular, and preferably personal, conclusion. Choosing
a topic that covers many aspects of art history and/or a long period of time is also unlikely to result in a
successful essay. Restricting the scope of the essay will help to ensure a clear focus and will provide
opportunities for demonstrating detailed understanding and critical analysis.
The following examples of titles for visual arts extended essays are intended as guidance only. The pairings
illustrate that focused topics (indicated by the first title) should be encouraged rather than broad topics
(indicated by the second title).
· “How did Wassily Kandinsky use colour?” is better than “The Bauhaus”.
· “An analysis of African influences on Henry Moore” is better than “20th-century British sculpture”.
· “What is the artistic significance of recent poles raised by the First Nations of Haida-Gwai?” is better
than “The art of Native North American people”.
Details—subject specific
Visual arts
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 169
· “Klimt’s use of gold” is better than “Sezession in Berlin”.
· “Robert Ntila’s etching techniques: a critical investigation” is better than “Contemporary East African
art”.#p#分页标题#e#
It may help if the student defines the topic chosen for study in the form of a more specific research
question, followed by a statement of intent that indicates which broad process is going to be used in
answering the question. In this way, the approach to the topic chosen may be even further clarified. Some
examples of this could include the following.
Topic Cultural influences on Pablo Picasso’s work
Research question Picasso: individual genius or cultural thief?
An investigation of the extent to which selected images in Picasso’s work
may have been appropriated from other cultural sources.
Approach
Topic The influence of Renaissance architecture in Montreal
Research question Cathédrale Marie-Reine-du-Monde, Montreal: a replica of St Peter’s, Rome?
An original investigation into the stylistic similarities in the architecture
of these two buildings.
Approach
Topic The impact of immigration on an artist’s work
Research question What is the impact of transcultural experience on the art of Gu Xiong?
Approach An investigation into the effects of migration on a selected artist’s work.
Treatment of the topic
It is essential that the topic chosen is clearly and directly related to visual arts. If the connection is only
incidental, students risk introducing material that is of only marginal relevance, and will confuse the
inquiry and weaken the argument. Students should be encouraged to formulate a research question of
personal interest and to draw on a variety of sources to support their arguments, such as textual analysis,
study of original artworks or designed artifacts, and interviews with practitioners or authorities on the
subject. Students should be helped to identify and choose appropriate sources, both primary and
secondary, and appropriate methods of research. Research questions that do not allow a systematic
investigation that demonstrates critical artistic analysis and detailed understanding are unlikely to be
suitable. In some instances, it may become clear at an early stage in the research that too few sources
are available to permit such an investigation. In such cases, a change of focus should be made.
The inclusion and discussion of appropriate visual reference material is of particular importance in visual
arts extended essays. Such material must, however, be directly supportive of, and relevant to, the
analysis/argument. It should be neatly presented, properly acknowledged, and should appear in the
body of the essay, as close as possible to the first reference.
170 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Visual arts
In order to promote personal involvement in the extended essay, the use of local and/or primary sources
should be encouraged wherever possible. However, it is appreciated that, in certain situations, students#p#分页标题#e#
may not necessarily have access to primary sources. In such situations, reproductions, videos, films or
photographs/Internet images of a high quality are considered acceptable sources. An argument should
be well substantiated, with comments and conclusions supported by evidence that is relevant and well
founded, not based simply on the student’s preconceptions.
Students are expected to evaluate critically the resources consulted during the process of writing the
essay by asking themselves the following questions.
· Which sources are vital to the support of my ideas, opinions and assertions?
· Which sources do not contribute to the analysis?
Many different approaches to the research question can be appropriate, for instance:
· use of primary sources (artwork and artists) and secondary sources (material about the visual arts)
in order to establish and appraise varying interpretations
· analysing sources (primary and secondary) in order to explore and explain particular aspects of the
visual arts
· using primary source material for an analysis, with emphasis on a particular aspect of visual arts
· collecting and analysing reproductions of artwork, possibly leading to a comparison of similar or
different images.
Students should also demonstrate awareness of other issues surrounding the art studied.
· Do I show an awareness of the value and limitations of the art I am studying through analysing its
origin and purpose?
· Do I show a consistently good artistic understanding in setting the research question into context
and addressing it fully and effectively?
Relevant outcomes of this analysis should be integrated into the student's argument.
The argument should also be well substantiated:
· With what evidence do I support my comments and conclusions?
· Is this evidence relevant and well founded, and not based simply on my preconceptions?
Finally, an extended essay in visual arts is a formal essay, so students must pay very careful attention to
the requirements of the assessment criteria.
Frequent reference to the assessment criteria by both the supervisor and the student will help
keep a sharper focus on the project.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 171
Visual arts
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
The research question can often be best defined in the form of a question. It may, however, also be
presented as a statement or proposition for discussion. It must be:
· specific and sharply focused
· appropriate to the visual arts (broadly defined also to include architecture, design and contemporary
forms of visual culture) and not of a trivial nature
· centred on the visual arts and not on peripheral issues such as biography#p#分页标题#e#
· stated clearly early on in the essay.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should explain succinctly the significance of the topic, why it is worthy of investigation,
and how the research question relates to existing knowledge on the topic.
The introduction should not be seen as an opportunity for padding out an essay with a lengthy account
of an artist’s life.
Criterion C: investigation
The range of resources available will be influenced by various factors, but above all by the topic.
Students should use in the first instance primary sources (artwork, exhibitions, architecture, interviews),
with secondary sources (textbooks and the comments of other artists, critics, art historians) as evidential
support. It is expected that visual material (sometimes including the student’s own photographs) will be
included and properly referenced.
The proper planning of an essay should involve interrogating source material in light of the research
question, so that the views of other art scholars and artists are used to support the student's own argument,
and not as a substitute for that argument. It may thus be helpful for a student to challenge a statement
by an art scholar (historian or critic), in reference to the art being studied, instead of simply agreeing with
it, where there is evidence to support such a challenge.
If students make use of Internet-based sources, they should do so critically and circumspectly in full
awareness of their potential unreliability.
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Students should demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the visual arts by discussing formal
artistic aspects (for example, elements and principles of design) and considering historical, social and
cultural contexts. Some of this knowledge and understanding should be based at least partially on primary
sources.
172 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
Visual arts
Criterion E: reasoned argument
Students should be aware of the need to give their essays the backbone of a developing argument in
which the essay is grounded in an understanding of the relevant and wider historical and sociocultural
context. Personal views should not simply be stated but need to be supported by reasoned argument,
often with reference to illustrations, to persuade the reader of their validity. Straightforward descriptive
or narrative accounts that lack analysis (for example, a simple recounting of an artist’s life) do not usually
advance an argument and should be avoided. Good essays are those that have something interesting to
communicate, where there is evidence of original thought, and where students are able to substantiate
their ideas and opinions.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject#p#分页标题#e#
There should be strong evidence of a thorough knowledge of the visual arts aspects of the topic, and
the essay should successfully incorporate and discuss visual images.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
There should be evidence of familiarity with, and the accurate and effective use of, visual arts terminology.
Appropriate vocabulary must be used to describe historical periods, artistic styles and so on.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography,
appropriate (and acknowledged) visual images, or that do not give references for quotations is deemed
unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the required elements—title page, table of contents, page
numbers, visual references—are deemed no better than satisfactory (maximum level 2), while essays that
omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1). Within the visual arts, the “look” as well
as the “craft” of the essay is given consideration.
In visual arts essays, illustrations should appear in the body of the essay, as close as possible to their first
reference.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,
not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 173
Visual arts
Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in visual arts essays include the choice of topic and
research question, and locating and using a wide range of sources, including some that may have
been little used previously or generated for the study (for instance, transcripts of interviews with
artists and collectors).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These are most likely to be demonstrated as a consequence of
detailed research, reflection that is thorough and well informed, and reasoned argument that
consistently and effectively addresses the research question.
· Creativity: In visual arts essays, this includes qualities such as new and inventive approaches to artistic
analysis, new approaches to “well-worn” or popular topics, or attention to new topics and questions.
174 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007#p#分页标题#e#
Visual arts
These subject guidelines should be read in conjunction with the “Introduction”, “Outline” and “Details—all
essays” sections of this guide.
Overview
Extended essays in world religions provide students with the opportunity to undertake an in-depth
investigation into a limited topic within the field of world religions. The study should integrate disciplined
research that is informed by scholarly methods with original and imaginative analysis, interpretation,
and critical evaluation of the results of that research.
Students who are considering submitting an extended essay in world religions are strongly advised to
study carefully a copy of the Diploma Programme syllabus for this subject, before making a final decision.
The syllabus gives a clear idea of the scope and content of the subject, and will help students to decide
whether their choice of topic is appropriate.
World religions comprises a systematic, critical, yet sensitive study of the variety of beliefs, values and
practices encountered in religions around the world. A rigorous attempt is made to maintain objectivity
in the analysis and evaluation of religions. This requires, at the very least, an authentic attempt to
understand the beliefs, values and practices of the religion being studied by using language and concepts
drawn from that religious tradition. Essays that are primarily a defence or critique of the beliefs, values
and practices of a particular religious tradition, or that explain or evaluate religious phenomena from
the standpoint of another religious tradition or of a secularist ideology, are unacceptable.
The concern is not just with what the followers of a faith believe and do, but also with an understanding
of why they do so, through an appreciation of the form of life and world outlook that they constitute.
The result of writing an essay in world religions should be, among other things, improved intercultural
understanding.
Choice of topic
Essentially, students may choose to answer any well-defined question about any of the world’s religions,
present or past, subject to the following guidelines.
· Topics must be appropriate to the subject. Extended essays must address the beliefs, values and
practices of religious traditions and show a genuine understanding of the religion from the standpoint
of its adherents. Essays that are only indirectly related to religion—for example, legal issues relating
to school prayer, the wearing of religious symbols, or the scientific validity of “creation science”—are
not acceptable.
· It should be made clear to students who have not followed a course in world religions, and who are,
therefore, unfamiliar with the discipline and its methodology, that an essay in world religions is not
an opportunity to write an essay of a confessional, evangelizing, or apologetic nature. This means#p#分页标题#e#
that students should avoid topics that involve making judgments about the truth-value of religious
beliefs.
Details—subject specific
World religions
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 175
· Essays should not be purely descriptive but should shed some light on why people believe and/or
act as they do, or on the relationship between the religion and the culture of which it is a part.
Students should ideally either have taken a course in the discipline or spent some time in independent
study, preferably with a mentor who has significant background in the discipline.
· The research question should be well defined. Topics that are too broad nearly always result in essays
that are superficial, purely descriptive, and riddled with errors and misconceptions.
· The research question should permit investigation using a method or approach that the student is
capable of completing successfully, given his or her level of training, and the time and resources
available. In other words, students should not plan an essay that requires access to unobtainable or
unreadable primary sources, or that requires a larger number of in-depth interviews than there is
time to carry out.
The most successful essays generally focus on the analysis or interpretation of a particular religious text,
image, ritual or practice, or examine the significance of a well-defined concept in a particular religious
tradition. Some examples of this could include the following.
Topic The politics of religious symbols in France
Why do some high school students in France wear religious symbols to
school? Why do many people in France object?
Research question
An in-depth interview study of attitudes towards wearing religious
symbols in public schools in France.
Approach
Topic Creationism
Why is the doctrine of creation so central to contemporary evangelical
Protestantism?
Research question
An analysis of the understanding of the doctrine of creation and its
relationship to other doctrines in the work of three contemporary
evangelical theologians.
Approach
Topic Prophecy
What are the differences in the understanding of prophecy in Judaism,
Christianity and Islam?
Research question
A study of the usage of the Hebrew, Greek and Arabic words translated
into English as “prophet” in selected texts from the Hebrew Scriptures,
the New Testament and the Koran.
Approach
Topic Prayer in public schools
How do high school students in South Carolina experience school prayer
and its prohibition?
Research question
An in-depth interview study of the attitudes and experience of South
Carolina high school students regarding school prayer.
Approach
176 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007#p#分页标题#e#
World religions
Topic Sacred spaces
Research question What is the difference between a Catholic church and a mosque?
An ethnographic study incorporating observation and interviews of
believers visiting both types of sacred space, informed by background
reading of theological texts addressing the question from both traditions.
Approach
Treatment of the topic
The first step in preparing an extended essay is to formulate a well-defined research question. Essays
that pose a question that might reasonably be answered in different ways are generally better than those
that simply discuss a topic, even one within the limits defined above. The best research questions are
those that indicate familiarity with existing research and with the larger concerns of the discipline.
Many methods of investigation are possible. Students might, for instance:
· analyse and interpret a sacred text, image, or ritual
· analyse the role of a particular doctrine within one or more theological systems
· conduct in-depth interviews in order to understand how ordinary believers approach a particular
religious belief or practice.
Students should be careful to obtain the permission of the leaders of religious communities before
observing services and rituals, and should obtain the permission of everyone they interview, making it
clear how the results will be used and how, if at all, the interviewees will be identified.
Students are encouraged to use both primary and secondary sources. Secondary sources should be
consulted in order to locate the topic being studied within a broader context, and to gain an understanding
of various methods of investigation, analysis, interpretation and argument. The best essays generally
test these established positions against primary sources or data collected for the extended essay.
Supervisors should make sure that students have at least a basic grasp of the scholarly methods needed
to interpret primary sources—for example, literary, source and historical-critical approaches to sacred
texts, formal and iconographic analysis of visual images, various approaches to the interpretation of
rituals. While it is understood that students are just beginning their study of world religions and are not
expected to have a complete mastery of methodological issues, essays that contain naïve analyses and
interpretations that reflect no training, and could have been prepared without any formal study, will not
receive high scores.
It is important that methods of investigation and analysis are appropriate to the topic and well executed.
In-depth interviews are an excellent way of finding out how ordinary members of a religious community
actually understand and experience their religion, but a study of this sort must involve a significant
number of interviews with a diverse cross-section of the population being studied. Interviews should#p#分页标题#e#
not be used naïvely as a source regarding the “official teachings” of a religious institution: simply
supplementing readings of secondary sources with a few interviews with local clergy accomplishes very
little.
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 177
World religions
Comparisons between well-defined aspects of two or more different religions are permissible, but
students must take great care to ensure that the comparisons are, on the one hand, genuine, clear and
specific, and, on the other, a manifestation of sensitive and objective analysis. It is important to understand
that different religions do not always pose competing answers to the same questions, but actually pose
different questions, making comparative approaches difficult at best. Should the student or the supervisor
have any doubts about the student’s ability to meet these criteria, a comparative study should be avoided.
Comparison in religious studies means the comparing of ideas or practices, not the making of value
judgments such as “Buddhist meditation is more effective than Christian prayer”.
Students should be aware that few religious traditions are monolithic, and so naïve analyses of
“Christianity” or “Buddhism” are unlikely to attain the depth necessary for an excellent extended essay.
Students should be as specific as possible about exactly what they are studying.
The results of the investigation, analysis and interpretation should be presented in the form of a
well-written, well-organized argument that supports a clear and well-defined answer to the research
question. Logical links and relationships between ideas should be spelled out. The conclusions should
show an understanding of the wider implications of the research.
The use of materials such as drawings, pictures and photographs should be encouraged where they
appropriately illustrate the discussion/argument. These should be included in the essay in a way that
makes the intended point, and this point should be spelled out clearly in the analysis, interpretation and
argument. When such materials are derived from another source, that source must be acknowledged.
Interpreting the assessment criteria
Criterion A: research question
Although the aim of the essay can best be defined in the form of a question, it may also be presented as
a statement or proposition for discussion. The research question must be appropriate to the particular
subject in which the essay is submitted. In world religions, this means that it must in some way address
the beliefs, values and practices of one or more religious traditions, and show some understanding of
world religions as a discipline. Questions that, by their very nature, require a defence or critique of the
beliefs, values or practices of a particular religious tradition, or that properly belong in another discipline#p#分页标题#e#
because the issues being addressed are scientific, legal or political, receive a score of zero.
Criterion B: introduction
The introduction should situate the research question in the context of existing research in the discipline
of world religions (including the specific sub-discipline in which the topic of the essay is located). The
student’s personal experience or particular opinion is rarely relevant here.
Criterion C: investigation
Essays submitted in world religions should show familiarity with the existing literature and with scholarly
methods appropriate to the specific research question being addressed. The use of primary sources,
especially sacred texts, should reflect at least a basic sensitivity to problems of analysis and interpretation.
Naïve readings of religious texts receive lower scores than those that are informed by an understanding
of historical-critical, source-critical, and literary-critical or other relevant issues. The same is true for the
interpretation of survey or interview material, observations of religious rituals or even theological texts,
which must not be treated naïvely as representative or authoritative.
178 © International Baccalaureate Organization 2007
World religions
Criterion D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied
Higher scores are given to essays that show:
· a broad familiarity with the discipline and relevant scholarly methods, including, especially, knowledge
obtained from the proper use of primary sources or scholarly secondary sources
· an understanding of how the religion looks from the inside
· some element of unique insight or innovation.
Lower scores are given to essays that show little or no knowledge of the topic, that are full of
misconceptions that would have been resolved by even cursory study, or that reflect only a confessional
perspective, catechetical formation, or basic factual knowledge of the kind that might be obtained from
world religions textbooks or encyclopedia articles.
Criterion E: reasoned argument
To meet the requirements of this criterion, students should ensure that the argument is appropriate to
the discipline and the specific scholarly methods used.
Criterion F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate
to the subject
World religions is a diverse discipline and this criterion measures the extent to which, and the effectiveness
with which, the student uses methods appropriate to the specific research question. Depending on the
question, this might mean the historical-critical analysis and interpretation of sacred texts, the use of
statistical methods in analysing survey data, the use of “thick description” or “interpretive understanding”
to evaluate in-depth interview or participant observation material, or the use of philosophical or theological#p#分页标题#e#
argument to address a disputed question. The highest scores are given to essays that both choose the
correct methods and use them effectively.
Criterion G: use of language appropriate to the subject
In world religions, the use of language must reflect an understanding both of the religious tradition
studied, as experienced by believers, and of the discipline of world religions.
Criterion H: conclusion
“Consistent” is the key word here: the conclusion should develop out of the argument and not introduce
new or extraneous matter. It should not repeat the material of the introduction; rather, it should present
a new synthesis in light of the discussion. The best conclusions will identify new questions arising from
the research or will reflect on its larger significance. In world religions, this might mean its significance
for the discipline or its implications for the religious tradition studied or the larger communities of which
it is a part.
Criterion I: formal presentation
This criterion relates to the extent to which the essay conforms to academic standards about the way in
which research papers should be presented. The presentation of essays that omit a bibliography or that
do not give references for quotations is deemed unacceptable (level 0). Essays that omit one of the
required elements—title page, table of contents, page numbers—are deemed no better than satisfactory
(maximum level 2), while essays that omit two of them are deemed poor at best (maximum level 1).
© International Baccalaureate Organization 2007 179
World religions
In applying this criterion, attention should be paid to standards for citing sources and other evidenceused by scholars in the discipline using comparable methods of investigation and the particular religious
tradition studied. Sacred texts are, for example, generally cited differently to other sources (for example,chapter and verse rather than page numbers). The Koran and Buddhist sutras are cited differently to the
Hebrew and Christian scriptures. Other forms of evidence—ethnographic observations, survey researchor in-depth interviews—should be cited in a manner standard for the discipline.
Criterion J: abstract
The abstract is judged on the clarity with which it presents an overview of the research and the essay,not on the quality of the research question itself, nor on the quality of the argument or the conclusions.Criterion K: holistic judgment
Qualities that are rewarded under this criterion include the following.
· Intellectual initiative: Ways of demonstrating this in world religions essays include originality in the
choice of topic and research question and in the development of theessay, locating and using sourcesthat have been little used previously (assuming standard sources have also been mastered) or thatare generated for the study (for instance, ethnographic observations or in-depth interviews),sophistication in the analysis and interpretation of that evidence, and taking new approaches to#p#分页标题#e#
popular topics (possibly achieved through evaluation of varying historical explanations).
· Insight and depth of understanding: These can be demonstrated by setting the research questionappropriately in the context of ongoing debates within the discipline of world religions, by theeffective use of appropriate research methods, and by creativity in the development of the argumentand conclusion. It can also be demonstrated by conveying to the reader a sense of how the religion
feels from the inside.

 

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