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Judge my History EE ideas!

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Hi y'all. I'm in IB1 and I'd like to start working on my extended essay over the summer. I've decided to do a history essay and I've come up with a couple different ideas that I'd like to get some feedback on. I sent an email to my advisor but seeing as it's the summer I don't expect him to check it, so I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice.

Obviously the feasibility of my topics will depend on whether or not I can find enough quality sources for each, but before I get too far into my research I'd just like to know if my ideas fit within the spectrum of an extended essay, and whether or not they're too broad or too narrow (since that seems to be a common problem).

Here's what I've come up with so far:

1. An analysis of to what extent Hitler's various hypothesized medical problems affected his military strategies - I'm not really sure how to word this one but it's mostly the idea I'm concerned with right now. Basically I was watching a documentary that proposed Hitler was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and that's what caused him to make a lot of irrational decisions towards the end of his life and take bigger risks to try and end the war before he died, etc. It was really interesting. I'm a bit concerned that Hitler is a very unoriginal topic though?

2. The political influences of punk rock in 70's Britain. Admittedly I don't know much about punk music but the subculture of anarchy/socialism intrigues me. I think this topic needs to be narrowed down a lot more but I'd have to do more research first.

3. To what extent should/did the Racak massacre influence NATO's actions during the Kosovo war &/or the validity of the war crimes committed at Racak. I have quite a bit of research compiled on this topic already as I did a non-IB essay on a related issue, but I'm more interested in the first two topics.

4. I'm not sure about a topic, exactly, but I'm currently studying a primary source original diary of a Canadian prisoner of war in Sham shui po during WWII as an external research project, I've considered doing something like comparing German vs Japan POW camps, or looking at how Japanese culture/worldviews impacts the way these camps are run (does that still fall under history?)

Erm...as you can see I don't really have any solid research questions developed yet, mostly just general ideas. But I'd appreciate any advice as to whether or not I'm headed in the right direction :)

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Hi y'all. I'm in IB1 and I'd like to start working on my extended essay over the summer. I've decided to do a history essay and I've come up with a couple different ideas that I'd like to get some feedback on. I sent an email to my advisor but seeing as it's the summer I don't expect him to check it, so I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice.

Obviously the feasibility of my topics will depend on whether or not I can find enough quality sources for each, but before I get too far into my research I'd just like to know if my ideas fit within the spectrum of an extended essay, and whether or not they're too broad or too narrow (since that seems to be a common problem).

Here's what I've come up with so far:

1. An analysis of to what extent Hitler's various hypothesized medical problems affected his military strategies - I'm not really sure how to word this one but it's mostly the idea I'm concerned with right now. Basically I was watching a documentary that proposed Hitler was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and that's what caused him to make a lot of irrational decisions towards the end of his life and take bigger risks to try and end the war before he died, etc. It was really interesting. I'm a bit concerned that Hitler is a very unoriginal topic though?

2. The political influences of punk rock in 70's Britain. Admittedly I don't know much about punk music but the subculture of anarchy/socialism intrigues me. I think this topic needs to be narrowed down a lot more but I'd have to do more research first.

3. To what extent should/did the Racak massacre influence NATO's actions during the Kosovo war &/or the validity of the war crimes committed at Racak. I have quite a bit of research compiled on this topic already as I did a non-IB essay on a related issue, but I'm more interested in the first two topics.

4. I'm not sure about a topic, exactly, but I'm currently studying a primary source original diary of a Canadian prisoner of war in Sham shui po during WWII as an external research project, I've considered doing something like comparing German vs Japan POW camps, or looking at how Japanese culture/worldviews impacts the way these camps are run (does that still fall under history?)

Erm...as you can see I don't really have any solid research questions developed yet, mostly just general ideas. But I'd appreciate any advice as to whether or not I'm headed in the right direction :)

The second one you mentioned seems to be really interesting! If i was a supervisor, i'd love to assess that EE.

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The first seems far too speculative, and I'm not sure if the second topic would fully fall under History. I wouldn't rule it out, but for an assignment that is typically so subject-stringent as the EE, number 4 seems by far to be the safer bet. Number 3 may be too specific for an EE, depending on how much research you can find.

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Hey! Im actually doing EE in history as well, although about how appeasement and nevil chaimberlain was to an extent cause for ww2 or something in that direction. Reading your topics i found topic 1 and 2 really interesting as, my teachers have told me, they might be turning points in which it would be an awesome topic to discuss. Hitlers medical issues as i recall did affect the war on germanys behalf, he was addicted to drugs as well. Topic 2 seemed as previous posters have stated really intersting as you could analyse and discuss the turningpoints in which the era brought towards the society, thats a really good benefit for you to have in your essay! message me if you want to brainstorm some more ideas im also a little speculative! :)

Edit: your ideas and topics are right on the track

Edited by Sunstorm

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You honestly shouldn't do anything involving Hitler for an EE. I like the punk rock one as well as the last two.

Hitler is always a safe route to write about when writing an EE in history, the only issue is that it is so common to write about his events and effects that it might get boring for the examinors to read, it does not affect your grade in any direction based on if you write about hitler or not.

A helpful source towards the 2nd question would be the book: What's That Sound? I read it during the music lessons in 9th grade and it explained the evolution and impact on different genres of music thus including the evolution of punk in the 60's and 70's!

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Thanks for the advice everyone! I was somehow assigned a chemistry teacher as my advisor so I appreciate all the input I can get.

I'm leaning towards the Punk Rock topic; I'll definitely try to focus on the societal changes/historical impact though. One other question though; today I was looking through some extended essay guides and I'm a bit worried that this topic might fall under Social and Cultural Anthropology instead of History? SCA isn't offered at my school so I don't know much about it. Oh well, I'll talk to my advisor/coordinator in September and if there's a problem, it seems like I have a couple other decent topics to fall back on.

Sunstorm, thanks for the book recommendation! It sounds like a good starting place for my research.

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