Keys to a Quality Extended Essay
The extended essay is an in-depth study of a focused topic chosen from the
list of approved Diploma Programme subjects—normally one of the student’s
six chosen subjects for the IB diploma. It is intended to promote high-level
research and writing skills, intellectual discovery and creativity. It provides
students with an opportunity to engage in personal research in a topic of
their own choice, under the guidance of a supervisor (a teacher in the
school). This leads to a major piece of formally presented, structured
writing, in which ideas and findings are communicated in a reasoned and
coherent manner, appropriate to the subject chosen
Students are, to a large extent, responsible for their own independent
learning, through which they acquire and communicate in-depth knowledge
and understanding. The research process necessarily involves intellectual
risk-taking and extensive reflection; open-mindedness, balance and fairness
are key prerequisites for a good extended essay.
Some extended essay subjects include cross-cultural questions within them.
Others invite such an approach. Whatever the subject, the extended essay
student should strive to find relevant information from a diverse range of
*** look for publicity about an EE boot camp this summer ***
EE Outcomes that should be evident
Demonstrates independent research on a focused topic
Demonstrates developmental approach to research practices – the
scope of the essay should pose inquiry and arguments represented
by depth of analysis and synthesis of ideas
Demonstrates skills of creative, authentic reasoning and perspective
Demonstrates engagement in a systematic process of research
appropriate to the subject
Communicates an excitement founded upon intellectual discovery.
EE quality examples ( S:\AAA-Classes\IB )
This is on the school server
You will find a copy of the ―academic Honesty‖ guide
You will find examples of quality essays in most subjects
Evaluative questions to ask yourself
Does my EE represent intellectual initiative and insight?
Did I formulate a precise research question?
Did I gather and interpret material from multiple sources appropriate
to the research question?
Did I structure a reasoned argument in response to the research
question on the basis of the material gathered?
Did I present my extended essay in a format appropriate to the
subject, acknowledging sources in one of the established academic
Did I use the terminology and language appropriate to the subject with
skill and understanding?
Did I apply analytical and evaluative skills appropriate to the subject,
with an understanding of the implications and the context of my
Things to Avoid (per Examiner’s reports)
Examiners’ reports mention these things to be avoided at all costs.
Students should not work with a research question that is too broad or too
vague, too narrow, too difficult or inappropriate. A good research question
is one that asks something worth asking and that is answerable within 40
hours/4,000 words. It should be clear what would count as evidence in
relation to the question, and it must be possible to acquire such evidence in
the course of the investigation. If a student does not know what evidence is
needed, or cannot collect such evidence, it will not be possible to answer the
In addition, students should not:
forget to analyze the research question
ignore the assessment criteria
collect material that is irrelevant to the research question
use the Internet uncritically
merely describe or report (evidence must be used to support the
repeat the introduction in the conclusion
cite sources that are not used.
An authentic piece of work is one that is based on the candidate’s individual
and original ideas with the ideas and work of others fully acknowledged.
Therefore all assignments, written or oral, completed by a candidate for
assessment must wholly and authentically use that candidate’s own
language and expression. Where sources are used or referred to, whether in
the form of direct quotation or paraphrase, such sources must be fully and
appropriately acknowledged. (reference S:\AAA-Classes\IB\Academic Honesty)
(P1464 PUPIL BEHAVIOR – REGULATIONS - BOARD POLICY: Each pupil is held responsible for
his/her personal actions. The right to attend a Wichita Public School carries with it the obligation to
maintain acceptable behavior. AIP 17. Plagiarism, cheating, and lying are prohibited. May 2008)
plagiarism: this is defined as the representation of the ideas or work
of another person as the candidate’s own
collusion: this is defined as supporting malpractice by another
candidate, as in allowing one’s work to be copied or submitted for
assessment by another
duplication of work: this is defined as the presentation of the same
work for different assessment components and/or diploma
any other behavior that gains an unfair advantage for a candidate or
that affects the results of another candidate (for example, taking
unauthorized material into an examination room, misconduct during an
examination, falsifying a CAS record).
The candidate is ultimately responsible for ensuring that all work submitted
for assessment is authentic, with the work or ideas of others fully and
correctly acknowledged. Candidates are expected to comply with all internal
school deadlines: this is for their own benefit and may allow time for revising
work that is of doubtful authorship before the submission of the final
PROSPECTUS is due May 17, 2010 ………. 0730 hrs!
ROUGH DRAFT is due Sept 3, 2010 ………. 0730 hrs!
REVISION is due Oct 5, 2010 ………. 0730 hrs!
Extended Essay Timeline – East High IB class
March 2nd & 3rd
Visit TOK classes – present EE process to Juniors – review ―Academic Honesty‖ –
review EE piece in IB Diploma requirements – students will be introduced to the IB
―groups & topics‖ to consider as well as the list of instructors available for advising
specific topics (see back side)
* During the next couple weeks – students make contact with potential advisors to
finalize their selection of subject area and topic idea
Week of March 8th
Meet with advisor to discuss general topic ideas – identify potential resources for
the student to investigate (this would be the first of four ―advisor meetings‖ signed
off on the prospectus cover page)
Week of March 29th
Meet with advisor to discuss the research question – make recommendations so the
question is narrow enough to cover in the length of the EE, yet having enough
merit to investigate (I see this as a meeting when the advisor poses various
questions that guide the student towards their own conclusion)
Week of April 12th
Meet with advisor to finalize the research question, review & clarify the specific of
the research process and discuss the specifics of the prospectus
Week of April 26th
Quick ―touch base‖ on progress of the prospectus – reminder of due date in May
(this meeting could easily happen via email)
DUE DATE May 14th
Prospectus due to advisor – signed off and forwarded to IB coordinator. Basically it
is believed that if students move through these steps – they will be well on their
way to completing a strong EE. The rough draft will be due prior to Labor Day
weekend (Friday Sept 3, 2010). Submission would be hard copy to advisor and
submission via Turnitin.com (we will incorporate the Turnitin plagiarism tool – you
have to first enroll in the class EE class of 2011). The prospectus will be scored
using a rubric and it being added as an assignment in the junior English class – the
advisor checklist, signifying meetings between student and advisor will be part of
that overall prospectus score.
DUE DATE Sept 3rd
Rough draft due to advisor - Submission would be hard copy to advisor and
submission via Turnitin.com (EE 2011 rough draft)
DUE DATE October 4th
Final draft due before school begins – students submit 3 hard copies to the IB
coordinator and submit electronic version via Turnitin.com (EE 2011 rough draft –