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Academics: Extended Essay Project


Wondering what kind of projects our IB students work on? We're pleased to showcase the Extended Essay Project in this newsletter edition:


Which IB Course is this project for?  

The Extended Essay, a 4000 word independent research paper, is part of the CORE requirement of the IB Diploma. Do students get to choose their topics for this project as well? If they are, what are some of the topics the students choose? Students select a topic that can be explored, usually within one of the IB subjects they are studying, to which they have a "personal connection" of some sort. This connection may relate to their personal heritage, for instance, or to a love for a particular subject; a past experience; a current activity they are involved in; or maybe even an exploration related to what they hope to study in university. Sample topics this year include evaluating Japan's decision to release water contaminated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster directly into the adjacent ocean; the relationship between the math of Coxeter and the art of Escher; the influence of Czec folk vs. American spiritual music on Dvorak's "New World Symphony"; and the best way to control human-elephant conflict in India.

What is the learning objective of this specific project? 

Technically, the paper provides an opportunity to learn and practice undergraduate essay preparation skills, such as locating and using academic library sources. Intellectually, it requires students to move beyond the narrative approach to topic examination, to one that requires a developed argument that can be supported critically by evidence. Which grade levels are participating in this project?

Grade 11.

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