Example Essay: Technological Techniques

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

I’ve been playing around a bit with scaffolding for essay writing, and from what I’ve found, a general guideline for essay structure is as follows: Introduction Core argument  Supporting evidence (min. 2 x studies). Counter argument Conclusion  Of course, this is just a template and sometimes the structure varies. For example, you might have one study supporting the core argument …

Sample SARs: Memory Reliability

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

Here are two versions of the same sample answer from this year’s (May, 2017) IB Psychology exam. The question was: Describe one study investigating memory reliability. The annotated short answer response (SAR) shows you the answer, plus my comments as to why I think this is a mediocre response. Then we have this second excellent annotated example SAR, which does a better …

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 …

Social Identity Theory: A Brief Summary for Students

tdixon Revision and Exam Preparation, Studies and Theories Leave a Comment

On the surface, Tajfel and Turner’s social identity theory can seem complex as there are multiple parts and some of the ideas are really abstract. In our themantic approach we try to break it down, lesson-by-lesson so each of the major concepts of social identity theory are introduced gradually. Remember that one of the first questions you should ask when trying to understand …

Critical Thinking in the New Course

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

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 …

Short Answer Response Writing Guide

tdixon Assessment (IB), Curriculum, General Interest, Revision and Exam Preparation Leave a Comment

I’ve had some good feedback for this short answer response writing guide so I thought I would post it here. This was one of my first resources I created after “cracking the code” of the IB Psychology assessments and it was in the midst of my creation of the themantic model of curriculum design. Understanding the requirements of short answer responses, …

Lesson Idea: Understanding the Approaches

tdixon Curriculum, Revision and Exam Preparation, Themantics Leave a Comment

This post is adapted from an earlier post. If you’re adopting a thematic approach to the IB Psychology course, you might be wondering: “won’t students get confused about what studies go with each topic?” It’s easy to think this since at first glance the thematic approach appears to be jumbled. But in this post I’ll outline a couple of very …