jess_hoeps23

Biology HL New Syllabus Exam Thoughts?

Hey Guys!

November 2016 exam student here. I was wondering what you all thought about the Bio HL Papers? What trends and differences did you see that were different when compared to the old syllabus? Did you find it difficult? 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought paper 1 and paper 3 were relatively easy if you studied. But paper 2 had some unexpected question( although it was all based on material from the syllbus). As to difference in trends, Paper 2 tend to focus on the "application" portion of the syllabus more, while paper 1 leaned heavily towards nature of science. Hope this helps:) 

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did SL, so I am not qualified to comment on HL materials. Still, for me, I can not help but to think that IB is trying to increase the difficulty of the exam by twisting words. Some of the questions could have improved in wordings. As you might now, based on the specimen, I thought the IB will give one or two questions about nature of science contents (which they did). Generally, content wise, paper 1 was fair I guess.

Paper 2 was actually a replica of many of past papers. The most challenging questions were data analysis questions, I think. Other than that, I think there was not much of "unexpected" surprises in paper 2.

Now, for paper 3, I might be really biased because I think I f**ked up section A. I think there is no way for you to practice paper 3 unless you know nature of science, famous experiments and assigned practicals by your heart. I did Option A neurobiology and section B was just between good and OK. I am saying this because the last question in section B sounded like a joke and I got kinda angry in the exam center. 

Summary: Paper 1, there is more emphasis on nature of science. Other than that, the pattern of questions is basically same.

Paper 2, data analyzing questions became a bit difficult. 

Paper 3, Section A, you would just have to know the practicals, famous experiments, nature of science by your heart. Section B: I guess the only difference is the rearrangement of contents in each options.  

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, =-= said:

I thought paper 1 and paper 3 were relatively easy if you studied. But paper 2 had some unexpected question( although it was all based on material from the syllbus). As to difference in trends, Paper 2 tend to focus on the "application" portion of the syllabus more, while paper 1 leaned heavily towards nature of science. Hope this helps:) 

 
 

Yeah, that makes sense. Thank you! What option did you do for paper3?

Edited by jess_hoeps23

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Seung Hun Han said:

I did SL, so I am not qualified to comment on HL materials. Still, for me, I can not help but to think that IB is trying to increase the difficulty of the exam by twisting words. Some of the questions could have improved in wordings. As you might now, based on the specimen, I thought the IB will give one or two questions about nature of science contents (which they did). Generally, content wise, paper 1 was fair I guess.

Paper 2 was actually a replica of many of past papers. The most challenging questions were data analysis questions, I think. Other than that, I think there was not much of "unexpected" surprises in paper 2.

Now, for paper 3, I might be really biased because I think I f**ked up section A. I think there is no way for you to practice paper 3 unless you know nature of science, famous experiments and assigned practicals by your heart. I did Option A neurobiology and section B was just between good and OK. I am saying this because the last question in section B sounded like a joke and I got kinda angry in the exam center. 

Summary: Paper 1, there is more emphasis on nature of science. Other than that, the pattern of questions is basically same.

Paper 2, data analyzing questions became a bit difficult. 

Paper 3, Section A, you would just have to know the practicals, famous experiments, nature of science by your heart. Section B: I guess the only difference is the rearrangement of contents in each options.  

 

I am doing Option A! Glad to hear that paper 2 was nothing new. We have already learnt our option topics and there was no mention of famous experiments, so I need to learn that! Thanks so much :D 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, jess_hoeps23 said:

I am doing Option A! Glad to hear that paper 2 was nothing new. We have already learnt our option topics and there was no mention of famous experiments, so I need to learn that! Thanks so much :D 

FYI, the section A of paper 3 will be based on the practicals and nature of science that are studied during the core and AHL!

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, kyriakosr21 said:

Paper 2 and 3 were HELL.

I have been reading all the comments on the petition...did you find the specimen paper was an accurate representation? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, jess_hoeps23 said:

I have been reading all the comments on the petition...did you find the specimen paper was an accurate representation? 

Well, the specimen paper was not an accurate representation I must say, but it doesn't mean that the actual exam paper was poorly made. 

 

Paper 2 and 3 were difficult, but they were reasonable.  I fail to see how I can complain about the paper. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Lovelife said:

Well, the specimen paper was not an accurate representation I must say, but it doesn't mean that the actual exam paper was poorly made. 

 

Paper 2 and 3 were difficult, but they were reasonable.  I fail to see how I can complain about the paper. 

 

You give me hope! The petition made it look deadly. Also hey there fellow German! I wish you luck for the rest of your exams :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bio was a bit challenging but nothing we did not know I think people just didnt like paper 2 because it had content that most people dont focus on too much I know i had a little trouble but I reviewed pretty extensively so i got lucky. Paper 1 was easy paper 2 was somewhat challenging and paper 3 was easy overall a solid exam however like ive been noticing with all my exams so far they have been harder than past papers i have practiced on. 

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/5/2016 at 0:26 PM, jess_hoeps23 said:

I have been reading all the comments on the petition...did you find the specimen paper was an accurate representation? 

what are u talking about bro hahaha. If i was given the specimen papers i would have gotten a 7 fo sure

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, I think that the fact you practice past papers without the exam tension makes it always seem as if your actual exam was harder.

The structure of the exam was close to the previous ones, if you practiced past papers you will be familiar with the structure (data based questions, essay questions etc), if you studied all parts of the new syllabus equally (not bias against ecology or other "unimportant parts" or nature of science) the questions won't be surprising and if you looked at the specimen and the mark-scheme you will find slight differences in grading and maybe question wording, for example: some one mark questions actually require more key words, not only one.

There are questions, such as those that start with "suggest" or "deduce", which by definition you are not expected to simply know, but figure out the answer...

That's what I think of both Chemistry and Biology exams this year, but it's all very subjective really...

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, AnjaDe said:

Personally, I think that the fact you practice past papers without the exam tension makes it always seem as if your actual exam was harder.

The structure of the exam was close to the previous ones, if you practiced past papers you will be familiar with the structure (data based questions, essay questions etc), if you studied all parts of the new syllabus equally (not bias against ecology or other "unimportant parts" or nature of science) the questions won't be surprising and if you looked at the specimen and the mark-scheme you will find slight differences in grading and maybe question wording, for example: some one mark questions actually require more key words, not only one.

There are questions, such as those that start with "suggest" or "deduce", which by definition you are not expected to simply know, but figure out the answer...

That's what I think of both Chemistry and Biology exams this year, but it's all very subjective really...

 

That sounds super reasonable! Thanks so much for the help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey guys! I was wondering if anybody was willing to share the Bio HL specimen papers with me. My IB1 exams are just around the corner and I'm pretty certain my school will use this year's examination papers, which I'm frankly quite worried about... :( I want to therefore at least try to become familiar with the new structure and possible content as much as possible. 

 

Thanks :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, badkidmarie said:

Hey guys! I was wondering if anybody was willing to share the Bio HL specimen papers with me. My IB1 exams are just around the corner and I'm pretty certain my school will use this year's examination papers, which I'm frankly quite worried about... :( I want to therefore at least try to become familiar with the new structure and possible content as much as possible. 

 

Thanks :) 

If you're certain that your school would be using those Specimen Papers for your IB1 exams, then it really is best in the long run that you don't try to do the Specimen Paper just yet as similar questions would overlap and you doing well would be more to having done the question previously rather than actually being capable of doing it on the get go. 

Also as you're still in IB1, it's very unlikely you'll even have a Paper 3 -- unless you've covered your Option topic already -- so you don't really need to worry about structure so much. 

As for new content, you can easily refer to the syllabus in the IB Biology 2016 Guide, though you shouldn't worry too much as again, you're still in IB1 and if your teachers haven't really been teaching you parts from the new syllabus, chances are you wouldn't be dealing with them just yet.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What should I say... IB got me over the point of not caring. (That was kind of my self-protection method from stress, heh...) I did both Biology & Chemistry HL, and I do not care if I'll get a 4 from either one, if the other is high enough.  P1 for biology was rather easy, I say.

P2, well... Some of those questions in Section B were just... weird. I did both the ones with drawings, kidneys etc. I knew they were going to ask about kidneys as a 8-point question, since it wasn't in P1! So ha! I'm not completely sure if I got everything required in the drawings, but oh well. I think I did. The data-based questions were good, I think. (Heard they were... interesting in SL though... HL was lucky, I think.)

I wish they would have asked more about cell respiration and photosynthesis in detail, since I was good at them, but only a few P1 questions, n'aww.

As for P3, we did Option D, which was good one since it was so well linked to Topic 6. I think I rocked P3. We'll see.

But damn, the Specimen Paper would have been so easy. *chuckle* Nevertheless, I think I'll survive.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree to everything others had said...

Specimen paper didn't help a lot...  specimen's questions were easier

P1 good

P2 and P3... Some of the questions I was bs all the way to earn at least some points... They were... just different

But don't remember the papers in detail, I completely gave up after P2 and P3, especially after Math P1 so I automatically erased all memories after the exams. Predicted 6 and got 5 for bio.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I guess I need to actually start reading the Nature of Science sections in my textbook..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now