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iblyf last won the day on November 8 2013

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  1. Right now I think that there are two things that you can do. Firstly, you have done something great which is to choose a theme. This is the first step for any EE. Next, the best thing that you can do is to do some preliminary reading to get a feel for your subject. For example, I decided that for my EE I wanted to look at French history, and then decided to focus in on the French revolution. After lots of reading I chose my focus to be on Marie-Antoinette and did a heap of research to try and work out what about her that I wanted to write about. So, at this stage you aren't really looking about how to be 'unique' in your extended essay. Rather, you want to find a theme that interests you as you are going to be stuck with this essay for a seriously long time!! I would have read mine several hundred times and done countless revisions and editing before it was ready for submission. My first draft was exponentially different from my final submitted essay. After you have found an area within that theme, say for me was the treatment of the queen, you then need to turn this into a question. Like- to what extent does the colour of apples affect our perception of their taste? I know this has absolutely nothing to do with history but you get what I mean. The best way to start a question is 'How'? or 'Why' or 'To what extent'? as they really demand an answer from a multitude of perspectives. The way to get an A in history (at least in my opinion!) is to not only have lots of historiography and opinions, but then to use facts and statistics to prove/disprove this historiography in order to come to your own opinion. The assessor isn't interested in a plain old repeated summary of what everyone thinks about the issue- they've probably heard it all before/ it's not unique or showing your own ability to come to a conclusion! Rather, you want to have your own argument and to provide a perspective on the issue that is personal. The best way to have a 'unique' angle is to get a better understanding of the topic yourself. Find out what exactly about that period of history interests you. Maybe a person? Or a particular event? You could focus on them/that and really have a nice, unique and engaging argument. It's more important that you have a good EE than an original topic. It's much better to have an amazingly written and researched EE on a more common topic than a terribly researched and 'un' analytical EE that is on a unique topic. Good luck!
  2. iblyf

    History IA

    I would have to say that for your history IA you are going to need a really good argument with extensive analysis of various opinions, arguments etc. to answer some kind of research question. So, basically your IA is just a long report using evidence to answer a question. So, the most important thing that you can do right now it to turn your ideas into a question. At this stage, that question does NOT have to be perfect at all! It is likely that it will change regularly throughout the process. I am sad to say though that I'm not sure how suitable this topic is for a history IA (the barbie one). Although I am also really interested in feminism and women's rights, I feel that the IA would become more exploratory than argumentative which is ​not what you want. Although your exams sound like a long way away, I cannot recommend enough doing your IA on something that is going to seriously complement what you have already learnt. You put a huge amount of work into it so it's most definitely worth doing it on something that is going to make your revision for exams that much easier and make you know a bit more about a question that could very well come up on the exam. If you have already done the research and formed an opinion about the topic from doing your IA on it, you will have all this extra knowledge to bring into your exam essay than most other students who have answered that question- simply because you have spent hours and hours researching and analysing the evidence to come to your own conclusion! So, if you are still interested in feminism through politics, try and connect that to something that you have/ will be studying in your history course. Even if you are studying WWI, I doubt that women's fashion would really assist you in answering an exam question. Unfortunately I can't be the one to give you the ideas, but feel free to post your own. I definitely recommend you google the topic syllabus to get an understanding of what you will be tested on the exam to find areas that might interest you- for example, in Single Party States there is a section on treatment of women and minorities. All you have to do is type in something like "IB History Single Party States Syllabus" or study guide. What you are looking for are dot-points of all of the areas that you are expected to know as a part of that topic for the exam. For example, I was really interested in learning more about the origins of the Cold War, as so far, there had always been a question on it on the exams and I really wanted to be able to have lots of great points which would allow me to answer it really effectively. It turns out that the exam question for November 2013, although no where near like my IA question, allowed me to draw upon a lot of points that I had made in my IA. As I had already researched it, I knew heaps about all the different historians opinions as well as what I thought about that topic which allowed me to come up with a thesis and argument points very quickly so that I could write my essay not only more effectively, but with more knowledge and at a faster rate as I kind of already knew what I wanted to say. Also, my history teacher recommended last year that a great idea for the IA is to look through past exams at the kind of questions being asked to get some inspiration for your IA question/theme of study. I hope all of that helps!
  3. It also really depends on what you're more passionate about. You have to remember that the EE is something that you're going to be working on for a LONG time, and you're going to want to do it on something that really interests you. So if you love chem more and can see yourself working to design experiments to answer a research question (but like a seriously massive IA) then go for it. My friend did her EE in Biology and the amount of practical work she did was enormous- something like 5 variants and each with 50 trials! So be prepared for a lot of practical work. But, with History if you want a good solid EE you need to spend a LONG time researching feeling like you're getting nowhere sometimes as a lot of the research is the same but from a slightly different perspective. It's a lot more than answering a question- you have to find loads of historiography, evidence to support/disprove that historiography and then lots of time and effort to bring everything together to make your own argument. But it's definitely possible to get an A in both- I got an A in my History EE and with the right outlook, determination and advice from your supervisor you can make a fantastic EE. So ultimately it's your decision, but I would recommend meeting with both a History teacher and a Chemistry teacher that have supervised extended essays before prior to making your decision as they are the ones who will be able to give you the best advice regarding which subject you should pursue. I hope that all of that was helpful!
  4. Hi! I got a 7 in HL History and I would be more than happy to help So, first of all, if you want the marks, historiography can never ever ever be used in place of an argument. The whole point of writing a history essay is to examine all of the evidence and opinions out there in order to come to your personal opinion. My mistake (and most peoples') is to simply summarise all of the evidence and historiography without actually having any kind of thesis. This is just presenting all the arguments, and this won't get you the marks. But, what will is if you can use evidence combined with historiography to prove your own argument. For example, Historian A might argue that Stalin's First Five Year Plan was a massive success. But, maybe you disagree. So, using evidence (like statistics of how much electricity was produced) you can argue that in actuality, it wasn't. By doing this you are combining a personal thesis, evidence and historiography in a way that is analytical and proves that you know how to use the historical evidence to argue your point. Or, you might agree that yes, the plan was a massive success. So, you quote Historian A and then say something like "this is supported by the fact that ..." So basically you want to follow a strategy of having a point- like the First Five Year Plan was a success, then bring in a historian, then use a fact to support that historian. Or, you could have a countering point too with a countering historian to show that history isn't actually simple- it's grey with lots of answers, but despite the 'greyness' you have come to your own conclusion. I hope that all of that makes sense! Ultimately the only way to do well is to really know what you are talking about and then, from there, how to put what you know into a well thought-out argument. Good luck!
  5. I did the South-East Asia option with China and Japan. I thought that the questions were absolutely fantastic- they covered all the things that I knew best so I was extremely happy! We did our mock exams on I think May 2013 TZ1 which was pretty tough so it really couldn't have gone better. I was also really happy with P1 and 2, so hopefully it all works out! I hope it went well for everyone
  6. I have to say, although some people don't need as much sleep, in IB you need to place as much importance on sleep as you would as a subject. I know that sounds a bit silly and weird, but sleep needs to be one of your number one priorities. Just as you would study for a test to get a good mark, if you want to be able to do well throughout IB in a sustained manner it is absolutely essential to get enough sleep. Right now I am in the middle of my final exams, and I can't tell you enough how important sleep is. I'm sorry to say this, but the only reason that you shouldn't be getting enough sleep is an enormous workload of IAs at once, or our favourite thing- procrastination! Thus, being tied is the worst thing that you can do to yourself in IB. It will affect you results in the long run. Put importance on sleep! If you want to get enough sleep, you need to find ways to deal with procrastination if this is what's preventing getting those extra couple of hours each night. Even 15-30 minutes extra sleep each night makes a huge difference in the long run. I would suggest making a study plan, blocking out how many hours you will work each night and adding in some breaks for food and fun stuff. And then, set yourself a consistent bedtime, but make it realistic. Don't go with something as early as 9pm, or as late as 12am. Aim for somewhere in between like 10-11pm. This will create a routine for you. The hardest thing about marking a new habit is starting a routine. But once you get a routine you will find yourself much more able to meet and to deal with the strenuous demands of the IB. And when you say you are a bit worried about exams, don't be! At this time, no one feels ready, and that's okay. It's more important that you look after yourself than staying up until all hours cramming every night. You can only retain about 15% of what you learn each day (I think...) and if your tired then this will be even less! So, I hope all of this makes sense. I am more than happy to message you a sample study plan if you would like some help planning out your time. Just remember, you can do it!
  7. The fact is, IB is meant to be hard. Everyone feels that there is way more work than they can ever reasonably do! However, one thing I will say is that I noticed that you're doing 4 HLs- how come? This may be one of the reasons why you're finding it so difficult- especially with the combination of Chem and History HL! Have you considered dropping one to SL?
  8. I thought that the questions were great! I have studied Mao's China and my class's HL option was China during that period so I know it really well! As for paper 2, I did the question on totalitarianism of Stalin and the question on the origins of the Cold War. I had particularly studied Stalin's policies and stats so I was really happy that a question came up that allowed me to talk about those. I thought that they were really straightforward and great to write responses on, especially given that I did my IA on the origins of the cold war so I was happy that the questions were really good!
  9. Absolutely! Ok, so what I have understood from your post is that you're asking two questions: 1. What is personal involvement and how do I address this? 2. How do I relate this to other real life issues? Well, to answer your first question, basically you need to show your own personal understanding of how you define beauty; not what the media tells us or anything like that. Use something similar to 'MY perspective on the issue is..." near the end of your oral to show, after examining the evidence, what conclusion you have come to about the issue, not anybody else. Does that make sense? With the second question, you need to check the media and get an understanding of how your particular real-life situation relates to others. This component is about quality, not quantity. Make one or two meaningful comparisons to other issues that you real-life situation draws strong parallels to. Does that all make sense? I hope that clears it up a bit!
  10. I would help as I have done Topics 1 and Option A which does a bit on Mass Spec but I can't access the photo! Would you mind typing out the question if you can?
  11. That's fine! Well, your x axis is always your independent variable (the thing you are changing, so temperature) and your y axis is the dependent variable (the result of what happens when you change the IV, so rate). Oh well if your teacher has told you to to SD then do it definitely! With the SD though, I'm not quite sure how you will use it... maybe with the error bars to show how much your results vary? Or perhaps constructing a normal distribution curve (sorry but I have no idea how to do this)! Sorry that I can't be much more help.
  12. Hi! Well, firstly I have to ask, do you do IB History? If yes, then great, but if not then I would strongly advise you against doing the EE in History. Having done a History EE myself it isn't just a chronological 'exploration', or an expository essay. First of all, you need to formulate some kind of research question. But, I'm not sure how suitable this topic is as you're not really asking a question. With your EE, you want to be answering something with research, evidence, historiography, and then extensive analysis of this historiography to kind of prove or disprove it using facts and statistics to come to your own conclusion. Also, when you say 'importance,' what do you mean? Importance for Disney? For film society? You can still choose to do this topic, but I'm not sure it if will really work. Is there historiography? Are there facts and statistics? You need to be asking yourself these questions to try and work out if the topic is suitable. It sounds to me like it would be a bit more suitable to IB Art. I don't know enough about it, but I would highly recommend that you go and see your History teacher/ EE supervisor to ask their opinion. They are the best people to ask- I'm just a student who is trying to do my best!! With History, if you're interested in art or film perhaps you could do an examination of those in a specific society?
  13. I thought that the poem had heaps to talk about, but it was hard finding an interpretation... I basically talked about the antithesis between Still and Life (from the title) and explored this through diction and other literary features, as well as our ability to bring a kind of dignified 'magic' to something as banal as a doorknob, but how this must return to normality when the sun rises again? I tried not to force an interpretation though, as it was so ambiguous; just more suggesting what some things might allude to.
  14. That's fine! I'm happy to help. I know how hard I found it at first so I'm happy to share some of my wisdom (haha) You don't have to have academic references, but it's good to try and find some kind of textbook reference or something if you can, as it looks like you have really got an understanding, of say, the effect of varying Potassium concentration on the growth rate of a certain type of seed, and why seeds need potassium etc. Does that make sense?
  15. No you shouldn't need to make a graph of all of the tables. Normally I make two. For example, if you are measuring the effect of glucose concentration on the rate of cellular respiration in yeast, one graph would be of the time taken for each of the variables to reach a certain CO2ppm level without any calculations of rate yet, and the other graph would have your calculated rate values. Why have you calculated standard deviation? I did an IA on the effect of increasing concentration of trypsin, so I'm not sure why you need SD. Nonetheless, you won't lose marks for putting it in! Feel free to ask me more questions about the IA, I have done 4 in total for HL Bio (and 4 for SL Chem too), and I scored full marks on two of my bio ias
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