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Hi! I just need some help with my EE. I do not know which subject I am going to do it in and was wondering if someone could help me. 

My subjects are:

Swedish A SL

Psychology SL

Maths SL

English B HL

Biology HL

Chemistry HL

 

My IB-coordinator told me that you are supposed to do your extended essay in one of your higher level subjects. She also said that it should be about what you want to study at university. My plan right now is to study medicine in the UK. So my original plan was to do it in biology or chemistry but I read that it is really difficult to get a good grade on your EE in those subjects so I don't know what to do. Any advice/ help? 

Edited by andreaelise

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Getting a good grade in EE doesn’t really depend on the subject that you choose. All that matter are your passion to the subject that you’ve chosen and whether you are good at it or not. For example, I find it much easier to get a good grade in science EE compared to language EE; while some other people find it impossible to get a decent grade in a science EE. So it’s all relative. If you love biology and are good at it compared to other subjects, then go for it.

 

One more thing to remember is to actually think of a topic when you are choosing the subject. This is because having a good topic, in my opinion, is a grade-determining factor. I love physics, and I was also quite good at it as well; but since I chose a bad topic to write my EE on, my physics EE didn’t go as well as I expected. So while you are choosing the subject to write the EE on, you should have some ideas about what topic you want to investigate. If you haven’t found a good topic, then I recommend you to switch to another back-up subject.

 

To sum up, an ‘A’ is not hard to get as long as you have a great passion for the topic that you choose. The subject does not matter! So good luck! :)

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Just adding in my 2 cents' worth:

 

I did my EE in English (which I did take as a HL subject). I'm currently studying medicine. I honestly don't think what you write your EE on has that much of an impact on your university studies. 

 

Science-related EEs are generally harder than humanities-based ones because the former usually require experimentation or research, and therefore a lot of lab hours. There is also a chance that the results may not be what you expect, and then you're going to have to do more research in order to explain those results. This isn't to say that an English or History EE is the easier option. I just think you have more control over how you manage your time if you went with something that doesn't require experiments.

 

I chose English because I like poetry and literary analysis/critique. The whole process, from the initial research to eventually writing up the essay, was highly enjoyable for me. I think I ended up getting 32/36, which back in those days equated to an 'A' grade.

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Forget about what your coordinator said, it doesn't matter at all if it's related to what you want to study at uni because it's not like it will build a knowledge base for you - the topic should be pretty narrow so it doesn't really help much if at all. 

 

The best thing to do would be to do it in a subject that interests you and in a topic that interests you. That's the only thing that will keep you motivated to do the reading that you need to do, the research that you need to do, and spend enough time on writing it and improving it. 

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It's really not necessary to do your EE in one of your HLs, though most do end up doing that way. Sometimes your favourite subject isn't one that your school offers at HL, or you just really like a subject that you're not comfortable taking at HL.

 

However, the reason your coordinator says you ought to do it in a subject you plan to pursue at uni is that you'll have experience writing a formal and relatively long academic essay in your chosen subject. It saves you from a lot of "whiskey tango foxtrot" moments, according to most of the graduates from my school. It's not the topic that's important, it's the credentials and experience.

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