Essay Writing Tips: Three Rules of Three

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If you’re learning how to write essays in IB Psychology or looking for good tips to pass on to your students, I would suggest the following “Three Rules of Threes.” #1: Three Parts to an Essay Every good essay has three parts (excluding the introductions and conclusions): Central argument/s Supporting Evidence Counter argument/s The central argument is where you address …

Not happy with your IB results? Here’s what you can do about it.

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The IB has a process called Enquiry Upon Results, or EUR for short. If you’re not sure about this process, this post will give you some key details. Just remember that everything should go through your IB Co-ordinator. Here are the categories for EURs: Category 1 re-mark: This is the re-marking of externally assessed material for an individual candidate. The …

What should we include in a mock exam? (Year One)

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The guidance in this post is going to be most helpful for teachers who are: teaching a two year course using our textbook, IB Psychology: A Student’s Guide  …and are following a similar course structure to the one I’ve proposed here. (i.e. Criminology, Social Influence and Quantitative Methods covered in Year One). Here’s what I include in my End-Of-Year Exam for …

Exam Review: Why I’m pleased I didn’t teach the command terms (Paper 2)

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I realize that critiquing the inconsistent use of command terms in IB Psychology assessments is like shooting very confused fish in a very small barrel, but I just can’t help myself. Was anyone else surprised to see the command term “Explain” in Paper 2 this year for the Abnormal Option? Here’s the question in question: Explain, with reference to psychological …

How to go beyond “describing” and into “application” of studies

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One of the most common mistakes IB Psychology students make is they don’t explain studies, i.e. they don’t apply the study to show how the study is relevant to the question. Instead, students summarize aims, methods and results and that’s it. This is description. What’s missing? An applied conclusion. Describing a study = summarizing aims methods conclusions Explaining a study = summary …

Lesson Idea: Using case studies to investigate problems (Old Syllabus – Paper 3)

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This is a modification of an earlier post. One of the learning outcomes for the HL qualitative research unit is: Explain how a case study could be used to investigate a problem in an organization or group (for example, a football team, a school, a family).  The following is an example activity that could be used to meet this learning …

How do you “explain the problem/issue” in essay introductions?

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In the new IB Psychology curriculum, students have to “explain the problem/issue raised in the question” to get 2 marks for their essays (Paper 1, Part B and Paper 2). But what does this mean and how do you do it? In this post, I’ll explain what I think it means and will show a simple framework for how students …

Lesson Idea: Analyzing Focus Group Interviews

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Using real examples of qualitative studies is an effective way of teaching qualitative research methods and concepts. It also helps with developing students’ ability to apply their knowledge to stimulus material (i.e. they learn how to use details from the text to support their answers). Note: this task has been developed for the “old” syllabus, but could be adapted for …

IA: Final Submission Guidelines

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This post is designed to help you make sure that you’re following the basic IA requirements before submitting your final draft. The following guidelines come from the e-coursework handbook from the IB. This information is relevant as of March, 2018. Please always refer to official IB documentation and ask your DP Co-ordinator for the latest updates. Formatting Guidance The following …