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IB`NOT`ez last won the day on August 6

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288 IBS Chief

About IB`NOT`ez

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    May 2017
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  1. I think only 1 person in this entire forums is qualified enough to answer..... I summon thee @kw0573!
  2. University of British Columbia in Canada offers a lot of scholarships for IB Diploma students
  3. They tell you it's a geometric sequence, so U2/U1 = r, where U2 is the second term of the sequecne and U1 is the first term of the sequence. Likewise, U3/U2 = r. Set up those two equations, solve for 'a', and they seem to hint you'd find 2 values of 'a' leading to two different 'r' values.
  4. Forget grade boundaries -- you can literally get a 5/24 for your IA and still get a 7 for the course if you do exceedingly well on your papers. Your score out of 24 is converted into a percentage e.g. 17/24 = 70% and so that gives you 70% of the total allocated points for Internal Assessments, which is 20% of your overall grade. So you get 70% times 20% your overall grade, in essence attaining 14% of your overall grade already just from a 17/24. Refer to the syllabus on how grades are awarded, but each component accounts for a fraction of your overall grade e.g. Paper 1 = 20%, Paper 2 = 35%, Paper 3 = 25%, IA = 20% for a HL science. And no problem -- always happy to help! Feel free to ask more questions if you have any!
  5. Criteria marks are holistic, so exceeding 12 pages MAY have played a factor in not getting a 4/4, but I doubt it was the sole reason. I had very neat and concise labels and titles for all my tables and figures as well as organized subheadings, but just reading the text I do think some parts could be made more concise. Also keep in mind that marks are moderated by the IB according to your teacher's grading accuracy for the whole cohort -- it's entirely possible the IA moderator thought I should have gotten a 4/4 for communication, but if he felt other people's IAs Communication marks were on point, he couldn't just increase the mark for my IA without increasing others'. Likewise, for my Chemistry IA, my teacher giving a 24/24 would also easily catch the attention of an IA moderator and if the latter's having a bad day, that's just asking for a down-grade of the entire cohort and so my teacher may just have wanted to play it safer. I really wouldn't worry about Communication at all. It comes down to a lot of things that are out of your control ie your teacher's grading, how other students in your class did for their IAs, consideration of your peers' marks if you're at the top of the class, and the moderator's judgment. Just follow all the criteria, make things organized and labelled and you should be set for a minimum of 3/4. In fact, if you feel confident your IA is at 17+ points out of 24, I would not put much more thought into it as mastery of the subject material is far more important to getting the IB score you desire -- I could have had 7 points less in each of my science IAs and still had a comfortable 7.
  6. I was a former IB student, graduating in May 2017 with an overall score of 41/45 -- I achieved a 40/42 in my six subjects, and received 1 diploma point from ToK/EE. Writing was an integral component to my experience in the diploma program and I recognized that there were different approaches to take in differing courses. 2) On workflow, the process of writing definitely took up the most time. Research is a continuous aspect of writing IAs - I incorporated more research when I feel is necessary. I usually aim for a balance between being concise and thoroughly explaining the background concepts and relevant ideas. Drafting, writing, and rewriting definitely took up most of my time with the IAs of most of my courses. Moreover, my school rarely had us write "trial" reports e.g. writing experimental lab reports in the style of IAs as practice in junior year before doing your real IA. Hence, our first IAs were our real IAs and though we didn't get to practice much in writing them, we had a lot more time to receive and incorporate feedback. 3) I've honestly never tried to look at my writing in such a formalized manner, however after reading The Pyramid Principle by Barbaro Minto, it's definitely something I've become more conscious about now. In the past I just try to make sure my writing wasn't superficial and that every sentence contributed something. 4) Having a holistic understanding of the criteria through looking at sample IAs from the IB Subject Materials, constantly thinking about them when writing your IAs, and then objectively marking your own work against the criteria is in my opinion the most critical factor to my success. I scored significantly beyond the 7 boundary for IAs in all my HL subjects -- Biology, Chemistry, Economics -- as I had a confident understanding in the IB's expectations. That said, I had massive setbacks as well -- I only received Cs for both my English EE and ToK, despite being predicted a B and an A, respectively. We all know predictions are tumultuous, but having done the same process of objectively grading my work against the listed criteria and reading many samples, I was genuinely shocked that I was so off the mark. Given that ToK/EEs were frequently moderated in my school, meaning my predicted scores weren't just the prediction of an individual teacher, made the situation all the more surprising. The bottom line is that having a firm understanding of writing expectations can enable success, albeit to a lesser extent in subjects like epistemology and english where there is arguably a greater deal of subjectivity. I hope this helps -- it's always refreshing to see an educator valuing the importance of skillful writing!
  7. You should double check requirements on their admission pages for CS. Physics may very well not be "essential" and your Biology + Chemistry background could be all the STEM proficiency you need. Everyone has had similar problems with standardized testing and internal school deadlines -- I'm not saying you should force yourself to still take SAT Physics, but you need to do the research and confirm whether or not you do need it for the schools you want to apply to.
  8. I had friends with predicted 40+/45 including Math HLs and didn't get into GT. After a certain point, about 36/45 or so, your IB points will no longer really matter. It's also definitely tough to apply to CS with those HLs. Not all is lost however -- I suggest trying to study and excel in the SAT subject tests for Math II and Physics. SAT Math II can make up for the fact you didn't take Math HL as really a good number of applicants only took AP Calc AB which is the equivalent of Math SL. SAT Physics will demonstrate your proficiency in Physics -- at least more so than you would had you not taken the subject test. Aim for 730+ on both and you're gucci. All these aspects, then maintaining a solid academic performance in classes along with some extracurriculars related to programming should put you in good stead. Lastly, you might want to apply Early Action to GT/Purdue/UW Madison to maximize your chances of getting in -- if you apply EA/ED, I'd say your chances are a lot better.
  9. It's perfectly fine. In the UK, HL Maths and a HL Science, preferably Physics/Chemistry/Computer Science, fit the academic requirements of almost any engineering program.
  10. IB`NOT`ez


    My university application process didn't go that great, that said I had an extremely supportive counselor and I've learned a lot in my time afterwards as well. Feel free to PM me if you have any other questions -- I'd be happy to reflect from my own experience and provide advice I wish I had in the past.
  11. IB`NOT`ez


    Also my bad, but while your numbers are definitely there for a UC Berkeley admit, it's still going to be a tough process. Being a state school, Californian residents just get the priority and it's not an indictment on your merits. That said, I've known people who got in with lower numbers, which brings me back to my first point -- show why you would be the best fit for that school and no other schools, and such genuine enthusiasm is what can get you in in place of stellar application components.
  12. IB`NOT`ez


    Sorry I made a little edit, I did come to realize parental or peer pressure may have played a role. Refresh the page and you can see my edited post! If you're interested in pursuing CS, a lot of state universities offer superior programs than their Ivy League counterparts. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Maryland College Park, University of Minnesota Twin Cities, SUNY Stony Brook, and most of the UCs can also fulfill your academic needs. CS is a hyperselective program -- even more so in those schools, with CS department average SATs/GPA rivalling Ivy League schools -- and you will inevitably find yourself still urrounded by world-class peers.
  13. IB`NOT`ez


    Focus hard on 1-3 top-notch schools e.g. MIT/Princeton and then have half a dozen or so good "match" schools e.g. UMichigan/UVA/BU/NU/NYU/CMU/USC. It's never a good idea to spam-apply a lot of uber selective schools without genuine interest/actual research and introspection on why you want to attend. It's not just about attending an excellent school, but it's why you would fit that school more than the other 95% of applicants. Judging from your list it seems you're attracted to those schools because of their brand names. While one can argue that the only real difference between Harvard, Stanford, Yale, and Princeton are their different school colors and names, you don't want readers to think that. Hence, do a lot of research on 1 school you can apply early action for and really look into what makes that school a unique fit for you. A good test would be if you can replace 'Harvard'' in your personal statement with 'Stanford' or any other name in your list, then that essay is generic and does not show genuine enthusiasm for the school. In other words, it's off putting to application readers and unlikely to make you stand out from the bulk of the applicant pool. Your best bet is to show that you 9999999% genuinely want to attend that school because it 9999999% is uniquely fitted to you and not because of any superficial reasons. Such schools are usually known for their academics but you're going to have to look for reasons beyond those as everyone will be highlighting academic reasons and they're pretty easy to look up online. Edit: I might have sounded a little aggressive in my post. Often times a lot of people apply to those schools due to peer or parental pressure. If that is the case, and even if it's not it's still relevant, my best advice is to reflect hard on yourself and figure out what you would want out of your college experience. The student community, geographical environment, and ideals of the institution are almost as important as academics and the last thing you want is to be at a school you're unhappy with. You're a high achieving student, but so is 80%< of applicants to all your listed schools and thus if you can't think of an extremely compelling reason to attend that school, app readers in turn won't feel compelled to admit you. Most schools in the top 100 are as academically fulfilling as the Ivy League schools; broadening your perspective is always a healthy thing.
  14. Doing ECs for the sake of doing them is indeed unrecommended, but that shouldn't stop you from doing a wide range of things if you're genuinely interested in them. The most important thing however, is that it's all up to you as to which extracurriculars you list. I suggest only talking about the ones that both mean the most to you, as in you contributed most meaningfully in those areas, and they help give your profile a decipherable shape. For example, 3 of your ECs -- Python progrmaming, position programming, and Microsoft internship -- all help convey a genuine enthusiasm as well as proficiency in software. Community service in your case is great as you actually did something, so TESOL is worth including as well. Honestly, and considering how you feel about Rubiks and your Youtube channel, there's no reason to leave those off too. If anything I'd just exclude the student council stuff since that's overrated and judging by the lack of description you don't feel that strongly about. Again, "doing ECs for the sake of doing them" is just a general rule of thumb and can't be applied to every individual. Your case is unique, but with a deft hand you can convey all the characteristics of yourself without seeming superficial. I suggest discussing with a counselor as to what kind of profile you want to convey to colleges, and then prioritize how you want to explain your ECs based off of that. Best of luck!
  15. Just look up SAT/ACT grammar rules, punctuation rules, clauses etc. Alternate between memorizing rules and practicing questions for a week or so and you should see an increase in your English score.

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