Do not discuss exams until 24 hours have passed. More information about the rules here.


Popular Content

Showing most liked content since 04/24/2017 in all areas

  1. 53 likes
    For the last few months I've been volunteering at my daughter's high school to help the 12th graders review for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Maths Standard Level Exam in May 2015. In the process I produced these review notes that I thought could be useful to other students preparing for the exam as well. Review Notes for IB Maths Standard Level I'd be grateful if you email me with any mistakes you find so I can correct them. Best of luck on the upcoming exams.
  2. 37 likes
    Skip to these useful links: 1. ToK Presentation Guide by Keel 2. How to pick your TOK presentation title by Sandwich 3. Past TOK Presentations - what people chose ToK Presentation Guide Knowledge Issues 'Knowledge issue' i.e. issues about knowledge. It would be appropriate here to consider what ToK is all about. Many naturally assume that anything philosophically based is ToK. Understandable, but wrong. ToK is based around three main questions: What is knowledge? How is knowledge acquired? How do we know what we know? In layman’s terms, a knowledge issue is a very general question which aims to explore the problems of knowledge and evaluate it. Thus, knowledge issues are usually formatted in the form of ‘How do we know…?’ (this deals with question 3) However, there are other forms such as ‘What is the role of [a way of knowing] in [an area of knowledge]?’ (this deals with question 2). The knowledge issue must be stated in the introduction of your presentation as it is what your presentation is all about. For example, ‘To what extend is euthanasia ethical?’ is not a knowledge issue as it does not attempt to answer any of the three basic questions. ‘What ways of knowing can aid us in determining whether euthanasia is ethical?’ is not a well formed main knowledge issue because it is too specific, but at least it is a knowledge issue which deals with question 2. ‘Derived / Sub-’ Knowledge Issues These are knowledge issues in themselves but are connected to the main theme or main knowledge issue of the presentation and are possibly more focused in nature. For example, if your main knowledge issue is ‘What is the role of reason in History?’ a linking knowledge issue you could explore would be ‘How can we use Historical knowledge and inductive reasoning to predict future events?’ Your entire presentation should be based around the main knowledge issue and your main theme, but this sub-knowledge issue will allow you to explore one small aspect of 'the role of reason in History'. Claims and Counter-claims These are statements which are answers to your knowledge issue or sub-knowledge issues. They are then proceeded with evidence that supports such a point. In a way you can treat this as a paragraph in an essay, its structure is similar to the Point Evidence Explaination (PEE) or Statement Evidence eXplaination (SEX) which you may be familiar with. For example, for the knowledge issue ‘How do we know whether homosexuality is ‘natural’?’ A claim would be ‘deductive reasoning can tell us that it is not natural. the natural goal of all living things on earth is to reproduce; homosexuality does not allow the possibility of biological reproduction; therefore homosexuality is not 'natural'. A counter-claim would be that ‘deductive reasoning has its limitations in aiding us to determine whether homosexuality is natural.’ A discussion on the flaws of premises and reliability of deductive reasoning would then take place. Real Life Situation A real life situation is a realistic event, object or scenario that allows you to extract knowledge issues from it or supports your claim, a possible answer to your knowledge issue, by providing evidence. Real life situations can be drawn form anywhere ranging from the news to a book your read to an event that happened on the school playground. The possibilities are endless. Always try to make your real life situation related to you in some way; an incident which happened to you would be perfect. For example, for the knowledge issue ‘How reliable are our sense perceptions in determining what is true.’ For the claim/counter-claim: ‘Sense perceptions have their limitations in determining what is true,’ a real life situation would be, ‘The time when I was small and saw a ghost’s face appear in the curtain, upon further inspection, it was the folds of the curtain that had shaped into something similar to a man’s face. With the combination of flawed inductive reasoning, sense perception had hindered my knowledge of truth.’ Getting Started There are two main ways to get yourself started. is to find a real life situation which really interests you. You will extract one knowledge issue from it and simplify it to make it into your main knowledge issue your presentation will be based on. From there you find sub-knowledge issues and more real life scenarios to support your claims and counter claims. is to think of a broad knowledge issue, derive sub-knowledge issues which you wish to explore and find real life situations from there. There are many ways to do your presentation. It can be a simple lecture, a power point presentation, (if your are in pairs) a dialogue, a role play ect. The entire presentation should be like a verbal essay, with a focused introduction introducing the main issues, your methodology and how the presentation is structured. A claim should be given first, evidence to support the claim, then the limitations of the claim or a counter claim. The conclusion should sum up the main points in the presentation, it is an opportunity to give your opinion (great for scoring marks on the Knower’s Perspective criteria). Presenting As with any presentation, practice makes perfect. Make sure you can be heard clearly and that you articulate yourself well. The nice thing about the presentation is that since it is verbal it allows you to create a lot of links. E.g. ‘referring back to the first slide of the presentation’, ‘this scenario is very similar to the tax the government is enacting next month isn’t it?’ Create a set of notes to aid you so that you know what you will be discussing next. With power points do not cram everything onto the slide, each slide should only have a max of 5 points, they should not be sentences. When showing pictures, make sure it covers the entire slide, what’s the point of having a picture when it's of minute size shoved in the corner? Most people are scared of the questions at the end, don’t be. The questions asked by your teacher are there to help you. If you’ve missed something in your presentation that is key to answering the knowledge issue, this is the opportunity to gain back marks. If you can’t answer the question simply make a statement or give an opinion. A classic way of avoiding questions is to make your own question, ‘That’s a very good question, but I think the main issue here is….’ But try to answer them because they are very likely to be beneficial. Secondly, the audience can ask questions too. Do not plant a question in the audience; it is obvious and creates a bad impression. © Keel,
  3. 35 likes
    Now that I'm done with my History finals (which I've been panicking so much about for the last few months) I'm going to procrastinate by writing some tips on how to do well in IB History while trying not to repeat things that have been said in previous posts on the forum too much. The historical investigation I wrote my historical investigation on Ancient Rome and regret it somewhat, although I did find it interesting. Unless you are very much into history as a subject (and even then), doing your HI on a topic that somewhat interests you and is likely to be of some use in your exams is, I think, the best option. This is simply because having spent so much time on your HI, you can probably spend a lot less time in general on revision of that topic, cutting your study time by a lot during what will probably be the busiest time in your IB years, the month or two leading up to the final exams. Don't spend too much time on the HI and also don't get stuck in refining small details - same advice goes for all IB assignments. Don't underestimate its importance, either - it is worth 20% (or 25%) and could potentially save your grade in case the finals do not go according to plan. Make use of the resources in this forum, including examples. Also, keep a very close eye on the marking criteria when finishing work; you should aim to achieve the highest one in every aspect. The same advice goes for your EE if you choose to write it in History; although in this case, choosing something you're passionate about and actually want to research is much more important than for the IA which is comparatively simpler and shorter. The essays There's a number of important points concerning essays. There's plenty of good resources for actual essay writing both online and in here, so I won't go into that. Some history specific tips follow... The subject reports for history seem to indicate that a thematic approach is preferable to a chronological one. This means that, for example, if you're writing an essay on Hitler's successes and failures, you could have body paragraphs for political, social, cultural, economic, and foreign policy, rather than going through everything he did from 1933 to 1945. Be as analytic as you can make doing so very explicit in your essays for the benefit of the examiner. Some ideas to show analytical skills: Refer back to the question at the end of every paragraph you write. The last few sentences should sum up why, how, and to what extent the things you introduced are significant to the question. Use connectors of addition and contrast such as "however", "on the other hand", "in addition" to make it very clear that you're analysing. Examine causes and effects for different groups of people. For example, in a Hitler's successes essay, you could discuss the point of view of supporters of liberal democracy, the population, the state, and Hitler himself, and make it clear that this wasn't necessarily the same thing. Define the terms used in the question in your introduction (eg ideology) as well as the scope if you're responding to a more open-ended question. Challenge the assumptions in the question if there are any. For example, if you need to discuss the conditions in the rise to power of two leaders, you can briefly say that the methods were perhaps even more important in their rise to power. This should not, however, be a major point in your essay! If you can use actual figures or specific primary sources in your essay, that's great. Memorising them in large quantities and for everything, however, is probably not worth the time. Dates are not very important; it is important to know the broad chronology of events, but not the exact dates! So you should learn years for most things, and months for some more short-term issues (eg. collapse of the Provisional Government in 1917 or the 1945 Cold War conferences). You can place events in context by, for example, discussing the events in the long-term (for example, when discussing the Russian revolution, you can say that WWI was particularly problematic for tsarism since the Romanov dynasty had linked itself greatly to military success) or discussing events in other places at the same time (once again, when discussing the Russian revolution you can say that it may not be surprising that the tsar was overthrown as WWI tended to illegitimise rulers all over Europe and even regimes where the social situation was much more stable pre-1914 collapsed as a result of the war). Also see the section below for historiography! Effectively using historiography When making notes, include a couple of historians for every subtopic, especially those which are more likely to come up in exams (for example, for the Russian option, Alexander II and the revolutions). Make little lists such as: It's pretty easy to find summaries of historians' views on the internet or on this forum, so use them to your advantage. Saying that, there's no substitute for actually reading proper history books at least for the topics you are focusing on. It helps you gain an understanding of the nuances of the events in question and also a deeper grasp of historiography which should show in your essays. This is especially true if you're aiming for the higher mark bands (although it is perfectly possible to get a 7 without wider reading). Shorter works eg. Pipes' Three Whys of the Russian Revolution give you a lot of benefit for a small investment in time. This also helps you see the kind of style you should aim for in essays. Although style isn't something you should be particularly concerned about, assessment in history will always be in some ways subjective; it might help you score a few extra points! Integrate the historians well in your essays and critically examine their views. Try to refute them if you can using facts. For example, for the above Soviet view, you could refer to the results of the Constituent Assembly elections following their coup, where the Social Revolutionary party won twice as many seats. Historiography should complement your facts, but it's in no way a replacement for them. In any given paragraph, roughly 50% should be facts, 30% your own analysis, and less than 20% should be historiography. Also show an awareness of the factors that affect history writing. So for example when discussing a Soviet view you could refer to state pressure and political ideology; when discussing the view that Hitler was the "Master of the Third Reich" (Bullock) you could refer to the experiences of the victims of the Third Reich and perhaps the fact that emotional and historical distance hadn't had the time to develop. Revising for the final exam and the exam itself HL History is probably one of the most time-consuming subjects to revise for since you need to have a good grasp of a large quantity of events and also a fairly good depth of information. You should not study everything you've gone through in class. The smart thing to do is to use a combination of past papers and the syllabus to determine what you should study. If your teacher has planned the course well (and even if he/she hasn't), there should be a considerable amount of overlap; for example, the paper 1 topic Peacemaking, Peacekeeping, overlaps to some extent with the Causes, practices, and effects of war in paper 2, and the interwar years topic in paper 3. Naturally, you should choose the topics with the most overlap to minimise work and maximise grades. Focus on the questions that come up a lot (such as Alexander II, origins of WWI and Cold War, and the Russian revolutions), but also ensure that whatever the combination of questions, you can answer at least the minimum required amount – you might get very unlucky. When considering what you should revise, it might be helpful to keep your own interests and strengths in mind. I am, for example, terrible at memorising practices of war since I have no interest whatsoever in military strategy or weapons... So I decided to skip that entirely for my final exams. I've mentioned notes (see this topic by Julie especially!) a couple of times above. You should have your class notes, but actually rewriting (and expanding) them while keeping the points above in mind is a good way to revise. Markschemes for past papers show the kind of things you should have knowledge on for every topic. As for all subjects, make yourself a schedule to make it easier to keep up with revision. At the point where you have a good grasp of the facts – which should ideally be no less than a week before your history exams start – the thing to do is to start going through past papers and writing as many essays and essay outlines as you can. This should be done using the actual timing, so about 45 minutes per essay. Aim to do at least one essay on every topic that is likely to come up. If your teacher is nice, he/she’ll give you comments on essays even during the study break. During the exam… Try to relax and breathe. Have a sip of water Use the reading time to your advantage. Read through all questions (and the sources in paper 1). Decide which ones you’ll write essays on. Start mentally planning the first one if you have any time left over. Writing essays against the time limit while revising also lets you know the way you work the best. If you need to plan, do so, as it is 5 minutes well spent. Keep up with the time limit and keep an eye on the time. Having three essays worth 15 points is better than having two essays worth 20 points and one introduction. If you get lucky and get a question that you find easy, I’d say it’s better to leave it last. This is for two reasons: first, you’ll be tired at that point, and writing on an easy topic will be easier for you; second, if you find that you have more time left than the 45 minutes you’ve planned for, you can use it to your advantage more efficiently by using more of your knowledge (rather than starting with that and finding yourself in the scenario above)
  4. 28 likes
    Here are some tips that I think will help with formatting paper 2's for language B. Sorry it's not very well edited. Paper 2 Tips Overarching tips: -Register: Who are you talking to? Should you use “tu” or “vous”? Are you being subjective or objective? -Linguistic elements: Always remember to include a variety of tenses and colloquial language. However, when considering tenses always make sure to stay consistent and match the tense that the prompt requires. -Structure: For structuring, always make sure your paragraphs are cohesive and transitions are solid. As Lower would say “Give their eyes a break”. -Principal ideas: This is very important. So important it needs to be bolded. STAY ON THE SUBJECT. Do not deviate from the subject and make sure you UNDERSTAND what the prompt is saying. Don’t write on it if you don’t understand a word that you feel is the key word. Start underlining the prompt while reading it, picking out key words and phrases. Be sure to use these phrases within your paper. Journal entry -Make it familiar: Journal entries are usually seen as more intimate than a letter. You can write it in letter form, or you can have fun with it. Write diagonally if you feel that it will boost the score (who knows sometimes it helps). If you are writing a letter begin with a familiar phrase such as “Cher journal” or “Mon cher ______”. - Utilize mainly past tenses and future tenses: A journal entry is usually kept simple, as it is a recollection of an event that has recently passed. Remember to talk about what happened and what will happen and what you’re feeling. - Cute pictures: No I’m not even kidding. Draw pictures. It helps with the aesthetics. - Date and signature: This is a journal. Always remember to date a journal entry and sign it. This should be located in the upper right hand corner usually. Remember everywhere but the US uses dd/mm/yyyy. -Ask self-questions: You’re being personal here. Ponder. Do some soul searching on paper. It’ll show the grader that you actually have a soul and emotions . Talk about what you fear, what you hope for, what you dream of. You know, the works. -Name journal (optional): Give your journal a name “Chere mon petit Bob”. Formal letter -Formal: Well…considering this is a formal letter. USE VOUS! You have no choice. Sorry. End of discussion. - Formatting: In the opening, don’t use “cher” just open with “Monsieur” or “Madame”. Always include the address for both you and the other person. Make it up. Also include appropriate dates and times. - Vocabulary: You can throw in s****y words here! Do it!! Don’t forget transitions. - Objectivity: This isn’t personal. In contrast to the journal entry, you don’t get to use the pronoun “I” too much here. Don’t go into your experiences. If it’s a formal letter, the other person will not care. Imaginative discourse/speech -“It has to be deep”: Not really though. But a speech should be thought provoking. So write in a way that provokes independent thinking of the grader. These are one of the harder essays to write but if you can get the grader to think about what he/she is reading in a way that is independent of what you have on the paper, you’ll major points. - Be persuasive in your arguments: You are making a speech. Odds are, unless you’re a crazy lunatic, this speech is to a crowd. Make it good. - Use “vous”: Just assume your speech will have more than one person listening to it. - Utilize proper salutations: Remember, crowds = plural strangers. You don’t know them. Don’t write like you do. -Subjective opinions: More opinionated writing. Yay! Make it some good opinions. You’re going to want to come on fast and strong. You only get one chance to get your ideas across so write it loud and proud. -Artistic effects: Exclamation marks!!!!!!!!!!!!! Make it exciting! Roar! Informal letter -Format : Use « tu ». You’re not writing to your school superintendent. Also use informal language. - Proper salutations and closing : « Bisoux » is quite normal for a closing. Try mixing it up “chaleureusement” (with warm regards) and “bien a toi” (best wishes) are some better ones. -Format: Always date it, it may be informal but it’s a letter. Use your first name to enhance familiarity. Address it as you would. - Friendly: Ask them questions. You want to get everything you want to say in this letter. Ask them about their lives, their work, their friends, their family. (Don’t be a creep) - Subjective: This is your friend. You can throw your opinions in there. -Experiences: Maybe you have some experiences with this friend of yours you can share. Make them up. Brochure -Format: Fold the page. No, really. Fold the page as you would a real brochure. Draw some pictures. Change up the font. -Give personal opinions: In other words, make up quotes. - Make it dramatic: MORE EXCLAMATIONS! And use figurate language. Over exaggerate. Propagate! - Organized: Don’t write paragraphs. Nobody wants to read that in a brochure. Make bullets and bold face them. Then if you need to write the description on the back. Make your space organized and make it seem well thought out. - Command form: You’re going to want to say “come” so use “vous”. - Be sure to include contact info, prices, phone numbers and other necessary information about the business the brochure is propagating. Newspaper article - Well structured: Vous. Always vous. You’re a journalist, be professional! And use past tense. This is a story you’re telling. -Be sure to refer to school/city/organization if you’re making up cites and sources. -Subjective: Once again, if you need to, make up some quotes from people who are biased. It makes your essay stronger. -Change the fonts: Imagine a page off the newspaper. If you’ve never seen one now’s a good time to go look. Make sure you have COLUMNS when you write. - When you end the article end with the date followed by your first and last name.
  5. 13 likes
    As much as I believe in gender equality, I find it hard to accept the term 'feminism' because of the connotation many women have given to it throughout the years. Don't get me wrong, but nowadays there are many women who use feminism as an excuse for a special treatment. Even in my limited experience of things, I've come across many women who were not too scrupulous when insulting the other gender. Why is this acceptable? Does an empowered woman really have the right to pigeonhole all males as "stupid pigs"? Maybe if we started calling it "equality", some individuals would not use it as a justification to back up their actions.
  6. 11 likes
    I've noticed a lot of people are asking about how many point they need to get into some Canadian universities or if their points are good enough. Many of us now people who have been accepted in with certain scores, so let's share? Below is a quick format you should use--just to keep posts easy to read. You can include how many people you know who received a certain score and got in--to add more credibility. You may also include what reps have told you--if specific. University: Program: IB points achieved Concordia University: Bsc. Science - Biochemistry 27 Points mimumum--unknown source McGill University: Biological, Biomedical, and Life Sciences: 42 points (2010) 43 points, 41 points (2011) 42 points (2012, 1 person) 35 points (2012, 1 person) Physical, Math, Earth, and Computer Sciences: 37 points (2012, 1 person) Bsc. Science: 34 Points (1 person) Management (commerce): 37, 37, 38 (3 people in 2011) McMaster University: Health Science: 43 Points (2010) Life Sciences: 37 Subject Points + 1 Bonus (1 person) University of Alberta: Bsc. Neuroscience: 38 (1 person in 2011) University of British Columbia: Biomedical Science: 32 points (1 person) Commerce: 32 points (1 person) Low-30s for "competitive app" (according to UBC International rep) University of Calgary Bsc. Neuroscience 37 Subject Points + 1 Bonus points(1 person)--Final Admission Psychology 33 Points (1 person) University of Manitoba: Faculty of Science: 40 points (1 person) University of Toronto: Business: Low 30-s for "competitive app" (according to U of T International rep) Life sciences: Low to Mid 30s for "competitive app" (according to U of T International rep) Co-Op Neuroscience (Scarborough Campus): 37 Subject Points + 1 Bonus (1 person) Co-Op Management (Scaborough Campus): 35 Subject Points + 2 Bonus (1 person) University of Waterloo: Biology: 40 Points (1 person) Mathematics: 35 Points (1 person) Mathematics & Business: 39 Points (1 person) University of Western Ontario Biomedical Sciences: 40 Points (1 Person) Science: 38 points (1 person)--applied for Medical Sciences Yr 1, got alternative offer for Yr 2 faculty of science. University of Wilfrid Laurier Bachelor of Business Administration And Bachelor of Science in Computer Science Double Major (Laurier campus only) (Co-Op) 36 points (including 2 bonus points) THIS POST WILL BE UPDATED AS MORE INFORMATION IS POSTED IN THE THREAD
  7. 10 likes
    Okay after seeing a tonne of questions about getting into Medicine in the UK recently, I thought I'd just save everybody some time and make a questions thread with a little list of frequently asked Qs. Please read through these to see if your question is answered here! ...and if it's not been answered already, please feel free to ask it on this thread so we can keep all the information together for future students so they can more quickly access the info they need. Frequently Asked Questions! Regarding subjects and IB scores... 1.1 Do I need HL Chemistry? 1.2 What if HL Chemistry is not offered at my school? 1.3 Do I need HL Biology? 1.4 Do I need HL Maths? 1.5 How many points do I need? 1.6 Do medical schools really like IB students? 1.7 Do I have to do my Extended Essay related to Medicine? 1.8 Do I do X subject or Y subject if I want to get in for Medicine? Regarding additional exams... 2.1 Do I need to take extra exams? 2.2 What is the BMAT and how do I prepare for it? 2.3 What is the UKCAT and how do I prepare for it? Regarding picking where to apply to... 3.1 Are all Medical courses the same? 3.2 What criteria should I use to pick where to apply? Miscellaneous 4.1 What other stuff should I do to maximise my chances of getting interviewed? 4.2 How do I prepare for the interview? 4.3 Can I do a different degree and THEN apply to study Medicine? 4.4 Can start out on another degree and then transfer/convert to Medicine? 4.5 What should I expect from the course? Q: Do I need HL Chemistry? A: Yes, you do. Only one or two minor medical schools in the UK don't stipulate HL Chemistry amongst their requirements. It's not a subject which you will find hugely useful when actually studying Medicine (actually HL Biology will probably help you a lot more!), but it is widely acknowledged to be a hard scientific subject and therefore people who can do well in HL Chemistry are likely to be able to handle the course. To double check that your Uni wants HL Chemistry, look on their particular website. The broad rule? You need HL Chemistry. Q: What if HL Chemistry is not offered at my school? A: Ring the admissions departments of the Medical Schools you're looking at and explain your situation. Their phone number can generally be found on the websites for those specific Universities. Often the Medical School will have its own admissions department, so make sure you check you're ringing the right place! Q: Do I need HL Biology? A: In the past, then as a rule, no. However for 2013 onwards several Universities seem to have made it into a requirement alongside Chemistry, for the somewhat understandable reason that a grounding in basic biology is somewhat assumed when you get onto the course. You will find it extremely useful to have done HL Biology, and if you're interested in Medicine one would assume it's the kind of subject you'd enjoy anyway, so I'd suggest taking it if at all possible! If you really can't take HL Biology, you should either check around and only apply to Universities which still don't require it, OR you might also want to have a shot at ringing up the admissions department and explaining it is not offered at your school. You can only find out for definite by trying Medicine IS Biology in many ways, so if you're not doing HL Biology because you hate the subject, you may wish to think deeply about WHY you hate Biology and whether you might not end up hating medicine the same! Q: Do I need HL Maths? A: No. Does it help? Maybe, but evidence suggests probably not. If you're good at Maths then go for it - also it's a hard subject so it's a respectable HL. Nobody knows the exact answer to this question, but the safe option is to do SL Maths unless you've got a particular motive to do HL. People can get in with Maths Studies, but as I only know one person who has done this (who had many better reasons to be allowed in) then I wouldn't recommend it as (assuming the admissions department knows the difference) it is a very easy 'soft' subject. Q: How many points do I need? A: The answer to this is simple - as many points as it says you need on the website of the particular Medical Schools you're looking at. Go to their websites and look, because they will all ask for different numbers of points! You need to be predicted at least as many as their minimum requirement, and they may also have other requirements such as particular scores in particular subjects. Go investigate. Q: Do I do X subject or Y subject if I want to get in for Medicine? A: The answer is that unless it's HL Chemistry (required) or HL Biology (pretty recommended!) it probably doesn't matter. Avoid 'soft' easy subjects but more or less pick whatever you want. The world is your oyster! I know of no subject combination which will put a shiny star next to your name because the IB by nature forces you to cover a lot of bases (an essay subject, a language etc.) so you'll never be lacking. Q: Do I need to take extra exams? A: Yep, almost all Medical Schools (except for a few such as Bristol) require you to sit additional exams to help them differentiate candidates. These exams are the BMAT and the UKCAT, and they'll ask for either one or the other. More explanation in the questions relating to those exams. Q: What is the BMAT and how do I prepare for it? A: The BMAT is an entrance exam currently required by Cambridge, Oxford, Imperial and UCL. It requires problem solving skills, essay writing skills and a memory of basic (GCSE level) science. You can prepare for it best by going through past papers and reading preparation books (such as this one) AND also reviewing your GCSE science. My advice? Try and find the book in your local/school library or buy a second hand version - it's very good but also something people buy and use just once, so you can get it for cheap quite easily! Remember to book in for the BMAT early because it occurs only once every year on a particular date which you can find for your year via visiting this page. Q: What is the UKCAT and how do I prepare for it? A: The UKCAT is also an entrance exam, but unlike the BMAT it takes the form of a crazy IQ test and isn't done on paper but on computers at Pearson centres. Same as the UK driving test You book yourself in for a session whenever you like. The UKCAT is very popular with Universities (although it remains an unsubstantiated test as the first wave of people to take it are only just starting to qualify as new Doctors) and nearly all non-BMAT Universities will ask for it. You can see the full list of Universities here. Prepare for it by doing past papers is my advice. Going in blind is not a good idea! Another tip would be to make sure you finish as it's multiple choice with no negative marking, so the more you complete (even if you're just clicking at random) the better when you're running out of time. Anyway, I strongly recommend you attempt the practice test and past papers (but don't bother buying a book, it won't help you) which you can find here. Q: Do medical schools really like IB students? A: No more or less than they like other students. Being an IB student in itself doesn't give you an edge (outside of mythology), so make sure you still work jolly hard! Most people on your course will be A Level students from the UK and around the world. The IB is a definite minority. Q: Do I have to do my Extended Essay related to Medicine? A: No, you don't. It can be on anything - and it doesn't even have to be Biology or Chemistry! You'll not be penalised for doing it on an unrelated topic, so don't bend over backwards trying to make it relevant. Generally the only thing you achieve by doing that is getting a poor mark in your EE because it no longer fits perfectly into the category of pure Biology/Chemistry. On the other hand if you DO somehow manage to do your EE engineering viruses in a research lab or whatever crazy thing you might find, mention it in your personal statement and bring a copy along to your interview. If they ask you about it, you've got the ideal opportunity to impress them and it'll go down well Q: Are all Medical courses the same? A: Indeed they are not! Broadly speaking you can divide medical courses primarily by teaching method. PBL or 'problem based learning' is something all medical schools are required to do, but some medical schools are far more enthusiastic about this than others. It's important to consider because the teaching style is something which will hinder or help you massively dependent on your learning style. PBL is, more or less, that you're taught via scenarios ('problems') which you then have to solve and so simultaneously you'll study the physiology, anatomy, pharmacology etc. of that particular scenario. As I said, all medical schools have some element of PBL, it just depends on the quantity. To stereotype massively, think of it this way: Low PBL courses - heavy basic science, largely lecture based, lower patient contact in early years (Cambridge, Oxford, Imperial, UCL) High PBL courses - high patient contact throughout, low on basic science, problem based (Manchester, UEA etc.) Basic science referring to for instance the difference between having a general lecture on protein structure, as opposed to learning about protein structure as relevant to a medical topic which you are covering. It's kind of like a purist approach versus a practical approach. The majority of courses are high PBL. Personally I think it really depends on whether you're the kind of person who'd rather learn all the information and then extrapolate from your base of knowledge (low PBL) or whether you'd rather pick it up as you go along (high PBL). I suggest you go and seek people's views and opinions on Google to find out more and really decide what would suit you best. Ultimately all courses will be some mixture of both. Other academic differences between courses include the availability of dissection (some courses will offer full body dissection, others only prosections - make of this what you will, dissection is in my opinion less important than people make out, but it may be something which will help you a lot) and importantly the BSc element of a course. Many courses are 6 years instead of 5 and this is because you get to take a BSc in the middle. This means you have to study for an extra year, but it will make you more employable anddd you can also be a 'normal' student for a year and indulge any passions you may have for scientific research etc. so it's important to consider in your choice. In some places the BSc is compulsory (Imperial, UCL, Oxford, Cambridge) whereas in other Universities it's considered an optional year which a certain % will do and a certain number will just proceed without, effectively moving into the year above, passing GO and saving £9000 of tuition fees in the process... Q: What criteria should I use to pick where to apply? A: Apart from the academic ones (see question above) and league tables etc. you should probably consider the following... - How well have I done in the entrance exams? If you screwed up your BMAT/UKCAT or did especially well in one or the other, it'll maximise your chances of getting an interview or alternatively ruin them. As without an interview you have zero chance of getting on the course, it's important to consider these exams and, if you've no idea or haven't done them yet, make sure you consider Universities asking for both sorts of exam. - Where do I want to study? This goes for ANY course. Do you want to live on a campus (e.g. Nottingham)? Do you want to live in London? Small town (Cambridge), medium town (Oxford), countryside (UEA)? Big city (Manchester, Birmingham)? And so on. - How much cash do you have? London is a very expensive place to be a student, consider cutting it off the list if you're short on cash or don't fancy hefty student loans. - Do I meet the minimum requirements of all the courses I'm applying to? Check the websites of all the Medical Schools you're applying to!! - If you're into a particular sport or music or whatever, make sure you also consider the social side of Unis because you may want to consider these things if you're above amateur level. - How big is the cohort of students? Being 1 of 350 is very different from being 1 of 30. Q: What other stuff should I do to maximise my chances of getting interviewed? A: AKA what do I include in my personal statement, effectively! You'll find way more about this on other websites if you google it because this question is asked the world over, but I'll include a brief snapshot here. Medicine is a very competitive course and just meeting minimum academic requirements is not enough! Important things to look at are: - Work experience. There's no minimum or maximum amount of work experience to do, but you need to have enough that you can reflect on it in your personal statement, say what you learned, and most importantly that you've been sufficiently exposed to the world of work that you can safely say you're still interested in Medicine. They don't want to invest money in medical students who drop out! Try for at least a week of work experience. Also remember, it doesn't have to be in a hospital. Writing to your local GP is a good idea, or failing that even just volunteering in a hospital/nursing home. - Extra curricular activities. Try and do things which illustrate what an amazing person you are. Think of all the good personality traits people can have - commitment, leadership, enthusiasm, creativity etc. and then try and find activities which help you demonstrate which of those traits you have. If you're lucky, you'll be able to use these activities for CAS hours too. - Well-roundedness. This goes hand in hand with extra curricular activities, really, but they'll want to know that you're not one-dimensional and that you can cope with stress, so having some sorts of hobbies or things which make you interesting goes down well. ...and so on. Basically for the whole of the 2 IB years you'll want to bear in mind the sorts of things you can ultimately write on your personal statement and try to make sure you've done stuff like work experience in plenty of time. Work experience is vitally important! Also very hard to get hold of unless you've got a family friend willing to help you out. Apply for it early, write to the hospitals early and KEEP BUGGING THEM! Q: How do I prepare for the interview? A: If you're lucky enough to get an interview, firstly celebrate and then PRACTICE. Yes technically you should be able to go in and sit down and answer all their questions, but in situations where you get nervous such as interviews, it helps you a lot to have thought about what you'd say beforehand. A LOT. Also it stops you saying stupid things and cliches because hopefully you'll be able to bash those things out of yourself prior to going into the real thing! Generally they'll ask you some straight forward questions which you can predict quite well. Why do you want to do Medicine? Why at this University? What interests you about the course? etc., and these are all things you should think up some answers for. There are many better answers to "Why do you want to do Medicine?" than "I like helping people". Expand on it! Find a good way to express yourself in the time you have before the actual interview date. Then they are also likely to ask you some more 'off the wall' questions that you can't prepare for much, but they'll be things like current topics in the news relating to Medicine. So, read the news for a bit. You don't need scientific expertise but you DO need to be able to back up whatever you say (so if you start quoting statistics, make sure they're correct!!) and put forth an opinion. It's about being able to think critically and express yourself, effectively. Topics in the news tend to be stuff like latest discoveries, ethics regarding organ donation, abortion etc. and NHS related stuff - like how, with a finite source of money, do we decide where to allocate it? And so on. You need to be articulate and have actual reasoned opinions. Just reading the BBC website (or listening to the highly informative Today programme on Radio 4 in the morning as you get ready for school) should be enough for this, you don't need to go out and buy the student BMJ or a load of journals unless you really want to. Remember though that the BBC seriously dumb down/make a big deal/are generally not that great about science articles on their website, so try to also find the information elsewhere if a story seems interesting to you. In some interviews they might ask to discuss with you your BMAT essay which they'll produce from some hidden location and remind you of all the rubbish you speedwrote in the exam, so be prepared for this possibility. In others they'll give you data and ask you what you think of it - especially Oxford and Cambridge. Take your time, think through the basic science that you do know and if you've no idea, say it out loud. They want to hear you explain how much you do recognise/understand and then be open and honest about where you get stuck and ask them for help, because that's technically how the tutorial system (which they have at Oxford and Cambridge) will then work. Resist the IB urge to bull****! This will not go down well. Q: Can I do a different degree and THEN apply to study Medicine? A: Yes, and at certain Universities with compulsory BSc courses you can use your degree to exempt yourself from doing a BSc year (so the course goes from 6 down to 5 years). However graduate entry is extremely competitive, supposedly more so than undergraduate as there're more people per place available (there are not many places available for graduates) so you have to ace your first degree. The first degree doesn't have to be related to Medicine - it can be History, English, Biomedicine, whatever. Q: Can start out on another degree and then transfer/convert to Medicine? A: You CAN start out doing another degree and then go to study Medicine, but you can't convert or transfer. Effectively, you join the group of people who're in their last year of school who are also applying to study Medicine. Even if you do Biomedicine, there's no way to move from one course to another, you have to apply to enter in at Year 1. Most people who do this have started out doing a degree which they've realised is not for them. As a "Tactic" for getting into Medical school it doesn't really have many positives, because the net effect is wasting a year. Don't try and do this on purpose is basically what I'm saying - you'll gain nothing from it. For those who have suddenly decided that they want to change course after making a mistake initially, however, don't despair. I know somebody who got into Medicine this way after a year of Biomedicine - but as I said, they had to start from Year 1, so didn't gain anything from it. Q: What should I expect from the course? A: Obviously it depends on the Uni but by and large you're looking at a course with (relative to other Uni courses) a lot of hours and a SHEDLOAD of information to absorb and learn. It IS a demanding course and plenty of smart people struggle and either drop out or are chucked out. So I suppose what I'm trying to say with this is that you should feel in yourself like you'd be able to cope. Expect to be pretty damn stressed out If you're only just scraping your IB grades, think long and hard about whether you're really up for/capable of being academically massacred for a further 5/6 years! Especially on Low PBL courses because the quantity of science and stuff to learn will leave you reeling. EDIT: still adding to this list, please suggest questions if you have more!
  8. 9 likes
    List of Online Resources for revision: General: English: French: German: Spanish: Dutch: Chemistry: Physics: Biology: Economics:,6221,65090-,00.html History: Business and management: Geography: Maths: Please send me any you think should be on there but aren't
  9. 8 likes
    Hi!! This is my second year of IB and in order to study ESS more efficiently, I made a summary of the whole book. Let me know if you want it
  10. 7 likes
  11. 6 likes
    Having taken both Economics and Chemistry HL, I would choose Chemistry HL over Economics HL in a heartbeat. Especially in conjunction with Maths and Physics HL, Chemistry HL is much more complementary and enjoyable, as well as preparing you a lot better for engineering. Economics HL is a tedious chore honestly, and Paper 3s of late has been getting much harder – it's no longer the "free marks" it used to be. As a matter of fact, the only reason the grade boundaries for May 2017 Economics HL isn't going to skyrocket high is because of a difficult Paper 3. Additionally, it's preferable also to do the subject you truly enjoy rather than the one that's "easy", as you're more likely to put in effort into a subject you're engaged in. Seeing as you like both though, and you're in a dilemma, I would simply suggest going for Chemistry HL due to the reasons noted above, and a lot more I can describe in time based on my own experience with the subject.
  12. 6 likes
    ummm... mine is kind of terrible. So once we had an exam in our history class, and the teacher was absent, so he had a substitute present. The substitute was waaay too nice, and didn't bother to even tell anyone to be quiet. So, the kids in my class started cheating off of each other. Not even covertly. Like legit, students were walking around in the class, going to different tables and ask for answers. Pretty soon it seemed like the whole exam was turned into a massive discussion session. Some of my classmates went so far as to snatching papers from other kids and copy down the answers (needless to say, these people didn't last too long in IB). Anyways, what they didn't know was the substitute was secretly noting people's names down. And so, when our teacher returned he was soooo furious, and there was a whole deal of drama in our class after that. We were punished by having to create our own lessons and teach our peers ourselves for about a month. We were shamed by all the IB teachers (this was just kept between the IB teachers and classes) and the parents were summoned. After that we were offered a retest. But our teacher was really mad at us.... it took a few months for him to forgive us... The whole experience terrified everyone so much that they decided to never cheat again. At least overtly. Now we look back on that incident and laugh at how foolish we were...It became our inside joke.
  13. 5 likes
    1) Age doesn't matter as long as school admits you. 2) The school can provide you with the exams in classes they don't offer, but doesn't have to. 3) Retakes are only for same subjects, at same or different levels. You cannot take a different subject to contribute to the diploma. You can take additional subjects that do not contribute to your diploma score. Thus it depends if your university accepts IB courses, or only the diploma. Specifically for History, you can change your route but not regional option and still have it contribute to diploma. Note that i) ToK cannot be re-taken. EDIT: A previous version stated that EE can only be add as an additional subject, but that only reflects the registration procedure. In the latest (Sept 2016) edition of the general regulations, it states clearly that a student can revise or submit a new EE in the hope of improving the grade.
  14. 5 likes
    This really depends on where you want to study, and what quality you want from the university you attend. In the UK all unis will require maths HL, and many of the top-tier universities elsewhere in the world are probably going to ask for maths HL for most types of engineering (you haven't specified exactly what type of engineering you want to pursue - I know that electrical engineering uses a lot of complex numbers which is HL only).
  15. 5 likes
    You find it weird when your backpack feels too light.
  16. 4 likes
    You have to comply with any internal deadlines. There is nothing according to IB that prevents you from working on them over the summer, but your school may have different rules. Your best bet is to probably talk to your coordinator (and possibly ask for an extension).
  17. 4 likes
  18. 4 likes
    Our teacher gave us some research resources for 2 business which are Mcdonalds and Google. I dont mind emailing you those if you want them Also make sure you study CUGIS very well, and understand it thoroughly. You can find everything at the back of the textbook regarding CUGIS. There are some sample questions at the back of the textbook as well, so you can do those if you like. I dont mind having a discussion about them with you, because I personally feel like I need to study that part too. We can pick a business, and do one of the questions at the back regarding that business. Please contact me if you want to do that and/or want me to email you the resources.
  19. 4 likes
    I took the ACT With Writing too, and I can pretty much say that it was easy. Throughout the test, I just felt as if I'd been given multiple successive Paper 1:s on various subjects. In the end, I received a 31/36 composite on the first go with fairly little effort in studying (just 3 full practise tests, that's all). As far as tips go, I'd suggest the following: General When revising using a book, buy something that contains loads of practise tests and use those. The ACT should not contain anything foreign to you, as it is basically a test that you can get full marks on given that you know a little maths, for all other tests it is purely reasoning at speed. Therefore, I found it a lot more important to make sure I knew how the test worked and actually after doing a few practice tests I decided to not read theory at all.Whatever the paper, answer the easy ones first and if you need time to think, get back to it later on.In the ACT, you do not lose marks for guessing the wrong answer. So, if you don't know or are near to running out of time, just select one of the answers for any such questions, it has a probability of 1/4 of being correct and probability 0 for deducting marks if wrong.In Writing, do not spend too much time planning. One way is to simply draw a line and list pros on the other side and cons on the other. After one minute of this, pick the view you have more points for and get writing. They want to see clearly structured essays with strong arguments and a little high-level vocabulary, which you cannot accomplish unless most of your time is actually spent writing the thing.Reading/English If you have a question where there seem to be two right answers, pick the one that is more formal. Often there are colloquialisms in there, but what they are looking for is the grammatically correct answer.Read both the texts and questions carefully, the questions are sometimes inverse (e.g. Which one of these words does NOT refer to object y?). This also applies for other tests but is particularly important in reading.Maths Know your rules of algebra and other rudimentary maths concepts from trigonometry and algebra. Most of the questions are easy, but they rely on students being in a hurry and making stupid mistakes and/or wasting too much time on the few somewhat difficult question. You should be solving a question per minute, and no working needs to be written down unless you want to. The mark depends entirely on getting the right multiple choice option.If a question is tough to crack, move on and get back to it later if you have time. This is particularly important in maths as the questions have a huge difficulty range and are not necessarily in order of difficulty.Know your GDC and what it can do, it could get you through a few questions that you would not be able to solve in your head.It is possible that you encounter maths you've never seen. For example I had a question on the second-degree expansion of a complex polynomial, which is only HL, so if you're not taking HL Maths, there could be questions that refer to concepts you don't know. In that case, do not panic, leave it and move on unless it can be solved by calculator.Science If you have a hard time analysing graphs or don't study physics/chemistry, make sure you know how to interpret basic things off a graph.Learn to disregard the scientific jargon often present in these texts, most of the fancy words referring to species etc are irrelevant in terms of answering the questions. If a term is relevant, it is explained.
  20. 4 likes
    I didn't do the Spanish Civil War, but: WWI Fay: Writing straight after WWI, going against the war guilt of Versailles. A complex assortment of causes, no one country is responsible for the outbreak. (Secret alliances; militarism; nationalism; imperialism; the press) Joll: Concentric circles model. Emphasises the conflict between the military and the civilian leaders in eg. Germany - on 28-31 July decisions were too fast paced for diplomats as they were made by the soldiers. Does not view alliances as very important, but they conditioned both attitudes and battle plans. Imperialism and the arms race contributed to the mood of 1914 which, in turn, made conflict increasingly likely. Rejects Fischer's primacy of the domestic policy thesis; states that there's no evidence to support the view that the war was started deliberately with these in mind. Fischer: Fischer thesis is very influential and pretty much the consensus today. Germany was planning an aggressive war in her bid for world power (September Programme in 1914 determined the war aims, seen as evidence for this) before Russia could get too strong. This was a result of domestic policy factors such as the rise of socialism (SDP won 1/3 seats in the Reichstag) as much as foreign policy. A continuity between aims of Hitler and pre-1914 leaders. Thus Germany is to blame for WWI! Ritter: Writing against Fischer. Germany did not plan for war; rather, the foreign policy had a high risk of war. Needed to maintain Austria-Hungary (in decline) as an ally, and Austria-Hungary had a strong internal need for war to curb Serb nationalism. Seems to consider the German responsibility in broadly similar terms as Joll. Taylor: Views the war as more an accident than anything else, but the German want for supremacy was very decisive. Sees the attack plans and the railway timetables as very important in making the conflict inevitable in the last days of July 1914; If you need to choose two, choose Fay and Fischer. Could always throw in someone who blames capitalism/imperialism as well (such as Lenin). There's tons more (eg. Ferguson who blames Britain, and Hillgruber who states that Germany took a risk very similar to those in Morocco in 1905 and 1911 to break up the entente but clearly failed). WWII is much more simple... Hugh Trevor-Roper: Represents the intentionalist school in interpreting Hitler's foreign policy; he had a definite programme that he'd outlined in Mein Kampf and in the 1937 Hossbach Memorandum that he carried on intentionally, leading to a world war. Hitler and Germany are to blame for WWII. AJP Taylor: The opposing, functionalist school. Hitler reacted to circumstances after 1933 which led to war. Thus international diplomacy is as much to blame as Germany, he was an opportunist and an improviser. Hitler was an ordinary German statesman (Sonderweg thesis), so elements of his aims such as Lebensraum can be traced back to the 2nd Reich. This is the Sonderweg thesis, so German history produced Hitler. Parker: Blames the appeasement and Chamberlain for making WWII possible as it ensured that Britain and France were in a weak position. Quite easy to refute; just refer to the domestic policy factors, pacifism, and the belief that Hitler was a logical statesman. Also note the Thirty Years' War thesis according to which WWII was a continuation of WWI. Could emphasise Versailles and other results of WWI as well as continuation of policy, but also quite easy to refute by referring to the changed political & economic situation, ideologies, etc.
  21. 3 likes
    IB asks for your compliance to internal deadlines, and that it is unacceptable to have an incomplete because of vacation. This is stated in the Handbook of Procedures, which I assume not many students know about since it's on the OCC and not on It is somewhat common that schools schedule common IA days or group 4 days, and that may sometimes be when you have schools off. I guess your school is being slightly unreasonable, but it is within their power to establish such common days for IA. I would suggest that you switch flights and return 2 days prior over the weekend. Things to learn from this 1) Always keep a master schedule, especially one that include all official school holidays and all deadlines required by each course. Hence when you are reading the syllabus or course outline and you see a discrepancy, you can point it out to the teacher immediately. It was partially your responsibility to raise the concern of having IAs on school holidays (or no school days) when you read the syllabus 2) IB will not step in on your behalf to negotiate with the school. You have to keep in mind that while schools report to IB, schools can set additional rules and student should comply with.
  22. 3 likes
  23. 3 likes
    If your IA is part of the sample sent to the IBO, the external moderator will adjust the final marks based on his/her discretion. Unfortunately if it's not part of the sample, the moderator won't see it, BUT its marks will still get adjusted based on what he sees from the sample. Therefore if the IA marks of the sample are deemed too harsh by the moderator, all IA marks can increase, including yours. The IA is worth 20% of your final grade. Theoretically, it is possible to achieve a 1/24 for your IA and still get a 7 overall for any of the science subjects, provided your exams are pretty much perfect. However, getting a 7/24 does get your work cut out for you in achieving a high grade – you'll need to do more than the minimum for a 5, 6, or 7 boundary in achieving such grades (in your final exams). Generally speaking, if your exams are a mid-5 – boundary for a 5 is between 56-66% – so let's say your external exams overall average to 60%, and your IA being 7/24, worth 20%.... overall your final score will be approx. 54%, which is still a 4 (for HL) Therefore you'd need need a high-5 in your exams to get a 5 overall, a very high-6 or even a low 7 just get a 6 overall etc.
  24. 3 likes
    It depends on the individual scores in the papers/IAs and what they add up to, and not the grades they correspond to so, e.g. if you got 60 on something, not whether it's a 5 on that component. And then they have different weights. As an example, in Maths SL, I had a 6 in my paper 1, 6 in my IAs, but a 4 in Paper 2. And it added up to a 5 in the end.
  25. 3 likes
    You can think of IB grades as a weighted average, but another way is to think of it as redempting tickets at a carnival for prizes. Your raw scores (out of 100% each) in each assessment are the tickets. For example if you get 100% on your IA, you may get 20 tickets. Then maybe you took paper 1 and 2 and from which you took another 40 points/tickets. So what IB does is look at the 60 altogether and say that's a level 4 prize. It doesnt matter what the IA 20 tickets by itself get you, but only the final number of tickets count. With that said, each of paper 1 and 2 is weighted twice as much as IA. So in the carnival analogy, that means a 100% on IA contributes the same number of marks (tickets) as 50% on one of the papers. With that said a final grade of 32% (32 tickets) is almost guaranteed a level 3 (prize). One way to get 32 final is 8/20 (40%) on IA and 27/90 (30%) on each of the two papers. There are two ways to get the final score and they come out to be the same. Calculate using raw marks (8 and 27): Final score = IA raw grade + (Paper 1 raw grade + Paper 2 raw grade)*4/9 Calculate using percentage:(40 and 30) Final score = (IA percentage + 2*(Paper 1% + Paper 2%)) all divide by 5 Varies by year, but 0 to15 is often level 1, 16-31 is level 2, 32-42 is level 3.
  26. 3 likes
    I believe the Oxford one does.
  27. 3 likes
    Paper 1 was difficult, but not too bad. Paper 2 was ok, but there always seemed to be one question in every set that I could not answer properly.
  28. 3 likes
    I passed away today
  29. 3 likes
    Hello Chemistry Students, I just made a comprehensive app for IB Chemistry post 2017-2018 Syllabus. The app is completely free and it has a lot of useful stuffs. 1. The app is only 3MB so you won't be losing a lot of space. 2.The app has most of the Syllabus content and plus detailed videos for every chapter and every topic. 3. Key terms and all definitions specific for every chapter. 4 If you feel confident enough, you can test yourself with PastPapers, Quizzes, and Tests right inside the app. And if any of you are having problems, you can contact me through the app at any time. The Link to my app: I put a lot of effort on this app so any support will make me happiest person ever. !!!!! Regarding the iOS app: Unfortunately, I will not be releasing an iOS version of the app because Apple charges an annual minimum fee of $99 for its developers (which is remarkably high considering that my app is free and non-profit) while Google only charges a one time fee of $25. If you don't have an Android device, you can install BlueStacks to simulate an android device on your Windows PC or Macintosh computer here.
  30. 3 likes
    An important point to mention here is that you should not let stress of the IB exams have an impact on your performance. Fair enough, you need a specific set of grades to achieve your offers but once you finish the IB you'll realize how such stress hindered your performance. Go into each exam fresh and give it all you got. Then, regardless of the outcome you'll know you gave it all you had and left everything in that exam room. That's all one can ever ask from anyone. With that said, I wish each and everyone of you the best of luck in your upcoming exams.
  31. 3 likes
    Generally, based on what my Literature teacher has told me, when doing a performative IOP you should do whatever it is you prepared first and basically step out of your role in the end and analyze what you have done, explaining how this ties back to your topic. Analyzing it in your role would be extremely hard and I can't really think of any way to do this and I'd advise you to listen to my teacher regarding this since analyzing is the most important part of the IOP (one of my friends did a performative IOP but ended up with no time to analyze and she was at the tip of failing the whole thing.) I'm not entirely sure if this is just my teacher though, perhaps you could consult yours regarding it and see what they say?
  32. 3 likes
    Hey and welcome to IBS! Taking essay-based HLs will definitely be quite a lot of work regardless of how skilled you are at writing, so keep that in mind. Passion and love for the subjects will get you through though, and will help you stay motivated when times get rough. I'd personally advise against 4HLs in your case (unless you want college credit for the US; I'm not an expert in this department so I cannot tell you whether biology HL would be beneficial or not). Biology HL is almost double the content compared to SL, and it might take up unnecessary time that you could put into some extracurriculars that would look good on your college application. In terms of your overall combination I'd say it's quite balanced and definitely manageable - as long as you chose (mainly) your strengths/ subjects you love. I cannot tell you how the economics course is going to be like, as I have neither taken the class nor done any IB class online. From what I've heard and read Pamoja Education provides rather solid courses, so I think it's really up to personal motivation to study as some see it as an 'extra' class due to the lack of physical teacher present in a classroom in front of you. Good luck with your IB journey
  33. 3 likes


    This chemistry investigation aims to determine the activation energy of a chemical reaction. I have received 22/24 in it, which was a 7. I strongly advice you to have it with you when you write your own, because it gives the style and sections needed to score a high mark.
  34. 3 likes
    I didn't have any of the same subjects as you, but with 4 HL's, I've had to optimise my time management. The backbone of my everyday-work was to go to school attend all classes, and when I went home I did homework rather than scroll through FB. If I'd had classes from 8 to 15, I might have taken half an hour or so to grab some food and just sit for a moment, but then I got going. This left me done with homework and assignments by dinnertime, giving me the evening to go to my free-time activities or just relax, or start the next assignment. It also meant that I could go to bed before 10 each evening, which I made use of, because a full night's sleep is KEY to getting good results while keeping your sanity. Start assignments early. Especially those concerning the language, because here you will have to work with texts. My strategy here was to read the text as soon as I could, because sub-consciously, you will work with it, and when you then sit down a few days later to write the assignment, it will come to you much easier. This counts for every assignment really, start early, because if you then have questions or are confused about something, you have time to ask your teacher, or if you simply run out of inspiration or energy, you can leave it for the day and return the next. I made use of lists on the tight days and during weekends where I had multiple assignments, be they the usual or the IA's. Just writing it down on a little notepad and putting it on the pinboard over my desk, where I could cross tasks of as I went along, was really nice and very satisfying. Finally, the very best tool I used was one I didn't get until the start of IB2, from the people at Lanterna. They showed a picture of a table that I took to heart. It was a table, divided into 3 columns and 3 rows: Urgent Not urgent Much brain power Less brain power I did this on a big piece of cardboard, and using sticky notes I wrote ALL my assignments down and put them on my table according to the matrix it presented: for example would I put a math assignment under "urgent + much brain power" because maths was not my good subject, so that was something I had to prioritise, whereas finishing my artworks went under "urgent + less brain power" because it was easier for me and didn't demand as much from me in terms of workload. This of course you can adjust to your own subjects, strengths and weaknesses.
  35. 3 likes
    IB is hard, we all know it, and there's always the temptation to take subjects where it's easier to get a 7. I just base my switching of History HL to SL on that. However, there are some subjects in the IB (and also A-Levels that aren't relevant to us) that are considered "soft" and as a result, universities like Cambridge and LSE have openly spelled out their attitudes towards them (not positive). Other selective universities do not accept them either. This is the list of "soft" subjects that aren't recognized the same way as other IB subjects, according to • Business and Management • Design and Technology • Information Technology in a Global Society • Theatre Arts • Visual Arts These are links to specific criteria given by Cambridge ( and LSE ( on the subjects that they accept and don't accept. This isn't to say that you WON'T get accepted by universities if you have one of these courses. For A-Level students, they still consider you if you have 2 subjects that are "traditionally" academic and one that isn't. However, maybe if you have 2 or 3 of these IB subjects for your diploma it might not necessarily be the best thing. I'm not trying to be discouraging, just though I would share this thread so that people, especially those starting IB1, are aware of the possible consequences of their choices. What do you think of this list, and is it fair that these subjects don't receive equal recognition? Personally, I don't take any of them. DT in my school is a big joke, the teacher makes them do no projects and for the exams it's just repetition of definitions (which according to the students that take DT is "soooo hard".) Not to be mean, but everyone in that class is part of the "non-academic group" that either has no future career plans or just doesn't want to "study hard" in Biology (these are real quotes). Our school doesn't offer any of the other subjects except Visual Arts, which is obviously relevant if you want to study it in university. However, I have a friend applying to Oxford Medicine who takes art and I don't see why she takes it instead of Economics. Art does have a lot of coursework, and so I think it's unfair that people who put so much personal effort in get less recognition. Friends elsewhere in the world who took the IT class mentioned also said that they did little work, and spent most of their time playing games on the computer. They took it for the "easy" 7 as well. Business and Management has a similar parallel, Economics, so if you are thinking of studying B&M the Economics course would be the stronger option, with the added benefit that the syllabus is one of the few in high schools that includes an emphasis on development economics. Useful for International Relations, Development Studies, etc.
  36. 3 likes
    I majored in Math at UC Berkeley back in 1989, but because I've worked since then in the computer industry I haven't had much of a chance to recharge my math "batteries" until this year when my 12th grade daughter's class needed some intensive test prep revision help... Glad it might be of some use to others... If anyone knows of any other popular IB Maths related forums where I should mention it, I'd be glad to post a link there, too.
  37. 3 likes
    Hahaha not plagiarise, are you serious? . Every experiment you do, has already been done. Is that considered to be plagiarism? I give up.
  38. 3 likes


    Here are just some useful notes on all the chapters within the IB economics course.
  39. 3 likes
    “The Country of the Blind” “Knowledge is the small part of ignorance that we arrange and classify.” -Ambrose Bierce The short story by H. G. Wells, “The Country of the Blind” was an interestingly suitable start to Tok because it reveals somewhat of the truth about the whole theory of knowledge. This is a story about a camp guide named Nunez who stumbles down a hill at night and falls into a village surrounded and sealed by mountains. The story behind this village is that a natural disaster hit this village, 3 centuries ago, which resulted in the formation of these mountains that isolated this village for the rest of society and caused them all to become blind. Over the years, the civilization’s sense of sight disappears and was replaced by the development of unique ways of using their other senses. Nunez enters this village with the idea that he will be their “One-Eyed man King,” rule them, and bing them all to reason. Instead, he is regarded as a freak, and is not accepted in the society unless he takes his eyes out to cure him from his abnormality. Through the use of a short story, Wells uses the civilization of the country of the blind to represent the reality of mankind. These blind people don’t know anything about the world beyond the surrounding mountains, and assume that anything past that point is simply the end of the world. They refer to their village as “the world” since they aren’t aware of the happennings of the world beyond these barriers, and therefore convince themselves that their world indeed is the whole world. They also disagree with the fact that people can see because they learned to overcome any inconvenience after a few generations and regarded it as something rational. Simarly, we, society in general, regared any strange idea or anyone else who they find is different from themselves as abnormal and simply incorrect. However, the truth of the matter is that people in general never actually know what is correct or incorrect. They simply assume that a dominant idea or trend in their society is the correct one, and eventually base their whole belief systems and ideologies on what they percieve to be the truth. As a result, people who dare to be different, or percieve the world through totally different eyes than the rest of society are socially ostracized and viewed as abnormal, similar to the case of Nunez. Tok is a class that challenges the ideas of knowledge and truth that have dominated our lives since our childhoods. By presenting us with this story, we’re able to view mankind as the ignorant side and see the story through the eyes of one man who had correct ideas but were different from the dominant ones and therefore was disregarded. By witnessing the story through the eyes of the outsider, I began to rethink my whole justification of knowledge vs. ignorance. The idea that knowledge, in reality, may actually be a term people use when justifying their beliefs. Finally, the idea that knowledge, in some cases, may simply be a form of ignorance.
  40. 2 likes
    Honestly, i'm not so sure about that KQ. From what i've heard from my teachers, KQ's should be about the formation of knowledge, and how does that knowledge affect us (or how we come to influence knowledge)- the much hyped 'how do we know what we know' meme. However, this phrase is not a joke and it's actually quite serious in ToK in order to form a good KQ and KC. Your KQ, on the other hand, can easily be made into a second-order KQ if u give some more thought on the knowledge related aspects of the issue instead of going into a debate. Maybe you could rephrase it by saying how shared knowledge may shape our perceptions. For example, "How has shared knowledge come to determine what we perceive as normal?" Don't take my word as final though; you should probably discuss that with your teachers. Hope this helps!
  41. 2 likes
    To be very, very, VERY careful with choosing an EE topic. My supervisor placed a bit too much emphasis on the topic needing to be 'almost new' - I probably took it too literally and crafted a topic that actually was completely new. Great for my PhD. Not so great for EE.
  42. 2 likes
    IB doubles your essay mark and add to your presentation mark. Note that the presentation is moderated through TK/PPD. That would make your score around 16-18. Note that if your presentation is marked down, the total score may be around 15 ish According to May 2016 boundaries, 10 to 15 is C, 16-21 is B. You are looking at a B or C based on what you said, probably a B @Bigdreams @SC2Player @ShrutiMishra hope that helps.
  43. 2 likes
    I grew up as a Muslim migrant in a town in Texas right after 9/11 and things were not always nice for us... there was only one mosque in town, right next to a church of Jehovah (the priest was friends with my dad, who was the imam of the mosque) and both my parents were studying in Uni (my dadd got his PhD from Texas Tech University). I don't want to go through some of the things the community and I personally faced (at school and in public), but we heard after Obama's election things got so much better for the treatment of the community back there. Trump's rhetoric may have souded like hyperbole, but so many of the people in what I consider to be my hometown loved every word. You can talk about the politics of it, the liberal elite this, the white working class that, the economy... but nothing has a stronger impact on your opinion in such a debate when you wake up to find 'Go home sandni**ger' on the wall of your place of worship, or get told to go back to Osama's cave while shopping at a Target. That stuff makes it personal. I almost never tie my emotions to what I choose to believe of follow politically, but for some people it becomes a matter of how you are going to be treated on a day-to-day basis, and when some rich, ignorant and distant man tells your cheering neighbors that he is going to disregard everything you've worked and loved for and kick you out or keep you from getting in, you don't really care how bad he and his followers make his opposition look. I think many carry that view. I would have voted Trump had I could. I do not think the scheming, clever politicians who disguise moral crisis as trivialities and speak the empty words of liberalism while their policies hurt others globally are any better or preferable to someone who is blatant about the corruption and evil that infects the U.S government domestically and abroad.
  44. 2 likes
    The EE is suposed to be based on one subject. Only exception is World Studies, which is reserved for contemporary exploration of development, world health, world food security that kinda stuff. I would keep the biology discussion general and accessible to those who do not study biology
  45. 2 likes
    Hey Ekzo, I think that likely the Macroeconomic section will include a question on cyclical unemployment, or some specific form of unemployment. It has been occuring in almost all the past papers I've been doing.
  46. 2 likes
    Damn that's better than when I first started IB. I had a couple 4s, 5s and just two 7s. However I was one of those people who needed longer to adjust to IB, and my grades improved drastically. I think if IB is important for university and you're enjoying what you're learning, you should stick with it. You're well above the international IB average score so you're actually doing great!
  47. 2 likes
    Here are some I made a while back
  48. 2 likes
    "We just have so much to do! It's about an hour of homework everyd-" Shut up...
  49. 2 likes
    The number of people who think they're INTJ indicates to me that either this test is faulty, or people are subconsciously choosing answers which will give them the result they want to see. INTJ is one of the rarest personality types: "INTJs form just two percent of the population, and women of this personality type are especially rare, forming just 0.8% of the population" (, so obviously the 30% poll result here is way off. I suspect it's the test, personally, as the questions were quite narrow in scope and mostly repetitions and variations of one another. Therefore, it is easy to be skewed towards one "path", which happens to arrive at the INTJ conclusion. I'd recommend this one: for a more accurate result. It's a bit longer, but I think it's a better indicator. But honestly, the only way you can use this accurately is by doing the full, on-paper, externally assessed test, without knowing how the results work beforehand (so you're not quite as biased). Just keep that in mind
  50. 2 likes
    It's not necessary to present presentations on a digi board but can do some chart works etc.. my teacher always says that however dumb a presentation though it is counted,but still the way you convey your message should be lively and innovative.