The extended essay is a core requirement a student has to complete as part of an International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma program. It has to be done independently and results in a 4000-word research paper on a topic of choice. Preparation for the IB program is a way of preparing the student to conduct research for an undergraduate program. It offers the opportunity to learn exactly what would be involved in directing research material to complete the research paper on a chosen subject.
This exercise is mandatory and if not completed would simply mean you do not get your diploma. Here are a few pointers you could use to ease up the process of completing this very important assignment.
- You are not allowed to complete the assignment as part of your normal class time. It has to be completed utilizing free time after class. Start on the assignment as soon as it is given to you. Plan yourself and devote a fixed amount of time everyday till you are well into the essay with the required sources of research systematically charted out.
- Since it is an academic essay, ask your teachers to help you out. The IB program suggests two to three hours of consultation with the supervisor or teacher. Start off with the initial research and then refer all the material to your guide for advice. It is important as that you have at least two to three different approaches to a research question. The guide would then be able to point out the direction you could take.
- If you are good in presentations, take this opportunity to utilize language, media, and formatting skills to complete the assignment. Think of custom written essays. You can use the style of writing you are most comfortable with. Try and incorporate all the guidelines given to you by your guide and blend it into your extended essay in your own words.
- Imagination is appreciated. Though it is an exercise in writing a research essay, using new skills and imaginative writing would help in getting you better scores. A well presented essay with new ideas and information that could benefit others is always a plus point to get you better scores.
- You have to pay attention to details. When an essay analysis is conducted, all the sources of information have to be listed and quoted. There should be a great deal of emphasis on analyzing each piece of information gathered as part of research. Basically, any question related to the researched information should be answered within the essay.
- Till you get the confidence of completing all the research requirements, a simple method of research would be to get your first research question, refer it to your guide, and follow up on advice given. It is an student essay, so help is always at hand. You might have to change the research question on and off, but you have time at your disposal. So this would not be a difficult task.
- Break your assignment into parts. Prepare a draft with the essay questions you had in mind. When you decide on the direction you have to take, attempt each section of the essay in parts. This would help to focus on just one aspect of your essay at any time. You can always compile it at a later time when you have completed the different aspects of your extended essay.