Why teach themantically?

tdixon Assessment (IB), Criminology, Curriculum, General Interest, Themantics Leave a Comment

Why teach thematically? If you think about it, teaching by the core approaches (or levels of analysis) in a linear way IS a thematic approach – the themes are biology, cognition and socio-culture, and then the themes are abnormal psych, health, etc. These themes tie together topics so by the end of the unit students have a broad conceptual understanding. …

Alternative Essay Rubric

tdixon Assessment (IB), Curriculum Leave a Comment

Here’s an alternative rubric that I use when marking my student’s work. At the core of the themantic approach to teaching is the recognition that learning moves from surface to deep learning. The three levels of learning (aka three levels of thinking) are descriptors that can lead to more objective marking and clearer feedback for students. These levels work at a …

Why we rarely use the word “prove” in psychology…

tdixon Assessment (IB), Revision and Exam Preparation 1 Comment

If you’re reading this it’s probably because your teacher has sent you here after you’ve gone and written something like, “this study proves that…” in your psychology writing. While you may be able to use the word “prove” in the natural sciences and other subjects, this post will help you to understand why as a psychologist you may never use this word …

So you want to assess ecological validity?

tdixon Assessment (IB), General Interest, Revision and Exam Preparation 7 Comments

If you’re reading this it’s probably because your teacher has sent you here after reading something in your essay along the lines of, “this experiment was a laboratory experiment and so it lacks ecological validity.” This throwaway sentence makes teachers and examiners groan (and not award you any marks, just so you know). So I’m here to help show you how to …

Biological Approach: Sample Exam Questions

tdixon Assessment (IB), Biological Psychology, Curriculum, Revision and Exam Preparation Leave a Comment

With the new curriculum and the loss of the LOs, many teachers may be wondering about what the exam questions will be like. The answer is: much like the old ones. If you look at all the topics in the biological approach they are all related to the understanding of how variables can influence behaviour. The exam questions will reflect …

Critical Thinking in the New Course

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The following is adapted from an extract in the introduction to IB Psychology: A Student’s Guide Critical Thinking The IB Psychology course is aimed at developing an understanding of relationships: relationships between variables, behaviour, ethics and research methods. But students also need to be able to develop the skills to go further than understanding and to be able to reflect critically upon …

How to cope with the options in 20 hours..Tip #1

tdixon Assessment (IB), Curriculum, Themantics Leave a Comment

With the new syllabus I do like the concept of having extensions to the core approaches: this is a well thought-out practical solution to deal with the many different SL/HL scheduling issues that IB teachers face. It gives us more flexibility in planning how we differentiate between SL and HL courses in the many ways we all approach the course …

C.H.A.C.E.R: The Themantic Lesson Plan

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Our goal at TE is to make teachers lives better by making them simpler. Do less and do it better, getting back to basics, yadda, yadda. If we can help you reduce stress, it will have positive impacts on your kids (see this article about the correlation between teacher burnout and cortisol in students). Get all your lesson plans and …

Relationship Chains: The Framework of the Themantic Model

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In an earlier post I outlined one of the core concepts of the themantic model of curriculum design: the building block. If a building  block is an individual unit of information, a relationship chain is what is created when it’s significantly connected to another building block. Psychology is the study of relationships. Primarily, it’s the study of relationships between variables and behaviour. …

Building Blocks: The Foundation of the Themantic Model

tdixon Assessment (IB), Curriculum, General Interest Leave a Comment

Now that we’re beginning to launch the themantic model of teaching and learning, it’s probably a good idea to begin elucidating what the model is all about. But before you think that this will just be another bunch of edujargon or abstract pedagogical theory, it’s important to note that at Themantic Education we realise that any theory is only as …