Extended Essay Guide Nature of the extended essay



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Extended Essay Guide

Nature of the 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. It is recommended that completion of the written essay is followed by a short, concluding interview,

or viva voce, with the supervisor.
The extended essay is assessed against common criteria, interpreted in ways appropriate to each subject.
The extended essay is:

• compulsory for all Diploma Programme students

• externally assessed and, in combination with the grade for theory of knowledge, contributes up to

three points to the total score for the IB diploma

• a piece of independent research/investigation on a topic chosen by the student in cooperation

with a supervisor in the school

• chosen from the list of approved Diploma Programme subjects, published in the Handbook of

procedures for the Diploma Programme

• presented as a formal piece of scholarship containing no more than 4,000 words

• the result of approximately 40 hours of work by the student

• concluded with a short interview, or viva voce, with the supervising teacher (recommended).
In the Diploma Programme, the extended essay is the prime example of a piece of work where the student

has the opportunity to show knowledge, understanding and enthusiasm about a topic of his or her choice. In

those countries where it is the norm for interviews to be required prior to acceptance for employment or for a

place at university, the extended essay has often proved to be a valuable stimulus for discussion.



Aims

The aims of the extended essay are to provide students with the opportunity to:

• pursue independent research on a focused topic

• develop research and communication skills

• develop the skills of creative and critical thinking

• engage in a systematic process of research appropriate to the subject

• experience the excitement of intellectual discovery.

Assessment objectives

In working on the extended essay, students are expected to:

1. plan and pursue a research project with intellectual initiative and insight

2. formulate a precise research question

3. gather and interpret material from sources appropriate to the research question

Introduction

4. structure a reasoned argument in response to the research question on the basis of the material

gathered


5. present their extended essay in a format appropriate to the subject, acknowledging sources in

one of the established academic ways

6. use the terminology and language appropriate to the subject with skill and understanding

7. apply analytical and evaluative skills appropriate to the subject, with an understanding of the

implications and the context of their research.

Responsibilities of the student

It is required that students:

• choose a topic that fits into one of the subjects on the approved extended essay list (in the

Handbook of procedures for the Diploma Programme)

• observe the regulations relating to the extended essay

• meet deadlines

• acknowledge all sources of information and ideas in an approved academic manner.

It is strongly recommended that students:

• start work early

• think very carefully about the research question for their essay

• plan how, when and where they will find material for their essay

• plan a schedule for both researching and writing the essay, including extra time for delays and

unforeseen problems

• record sources as their research progresses (rather than trying to reconstruct a list at the end)

• have a clear structure for the essay itself before beginning to write

• check and proofread the final version carefully

• make sure that all basic requirements are met (for example, all students should get full marks for

the abstract).

Outline

Advice to students from examiners

Recommended: things to do

Examiners’ reports frequently emphasize the following positive steps.

Before starting work on the extended essay, students should:

• read the assessment criteria

• read previous essays to identify strengths and possible pitfalls

• spend time working out the research question (imagine the finished essay)

• work out a structure for the essay.

During the research process, and while writing the essay, students should:

• start work early and stick to deadlines

• maintain a good working relationship with their supervisor

• construct an argument that relates to the research question

• use the library and consult librarians for advice

• record sources as they go along (rather than trying to reconstruct a list at the end)

• choose a new topic and a research question that can be answered if there is a problem with the

original topic

• use the appropriate language for the subject

• let their interest and enthusiasm show.

After completing the essay, students should:

• write the abstract

• check and proofread the final version carefully.



Recommended: things to avoid

Examiners’ reports also 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 research

question.

In addition, students should not:

• forget to analyse the research question

• ignore the assessment criteria

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• collect material that is irrelevant to the research question



• use the internet uncritically

• plagiarize

• merely describe or report (evidence must be used to support the argument)

• repeat the introduction in the conclusion

One further piece of advice is as follows: the more background a student has in the subject, the better the

chance he or she has of writing a good extended essay. Choosing to write the extended essay in a subject

that is not being studied as part of the Diploma Programme often leads to lower marks.

Researching and writing the extended essay

It is recommended that teachers advise their students about researching and writing the extended essay as

follows.

The research process

When researching the extended essay, students should do the following.

1. Choose the approved Diploma Programme subject for the extended essay.

• Read the assessment criteria and the relevant subject guidance.

2. Choose a topic.

3. Formulate a well-focused research question.

4. Plan the investigation and writing process.

• Identify how and where they will gather material.

• Identify which system of academic referencing they will use, appropriate to the subject of the

essay.


• Set deadlines for themselves that will allow them to meet the school’s requirements.

5. Plan a structure (outline headings) for the essay. This may change as the investigation develops

but it is useful to have a sense of direction.

6. Under take some preparatory reading.

• If students discover that it will not be possible to obtain the evidence needed in the time

available, the research question should be changed. This should be done sooner rather than

later: students should not lose time waiting and hoping that something will turn up. Students

should go back to stage 3, 2 or 1, and choose a new research question that can be answered.

7. Carry out the investigation.

• The material gathered should be assembled in a logical order, linked to the structure of the

essay. Only then will students know whether they have enough evidence for each stage of the

argument so that they can proceed to the next.

• Students should be prepared for things to go wrong. Sometimes they may discover something

later in the investigation that undermines what they thought had been established earlier on. If

that happens, the investigation plan needs to be revised.
Writing the extended essay

The structure of the essay is very important. This is what helps students to organize the argument, making

best use of the evidence gathered.

The required elements of the final work to be submitted are listed here. More details about each element are

given in the “Formal presentation of the extended essay” section. Please note that the order in which they

are presented here is not necessarily the order in which they should be written.

Title page

Abstract

Contents page

Introduction

Body (development/methods/results)

Conclusion

References and bibliography

Appendices


Students should use the chosen system of academic referencing as soon as they start writing. That way,

they are less likely to forget to include a citation. It is also easier than trying to add references at a later

stage. Most modern word processors are helpful with this.

Some students draft the introduction first. If students do that, they must be prepared to revise it once the

essay is complete.

The main task is writing the body of the essay, which should be presented in the form of a reasoned

argument. The form of this varies with the subject of the essay but, as the argument develops, it should be

clear to the reader what relevant evidence has been discovered, where/how it has been discovered and how

it supports the argument. In most subjects, sub-headings within the main body of the essay will help the

reader to understand the argument (and will also help the student to keep on track).

Once the main body of the essay is complete, it is possible to finalize the introduction (which tells the reader

what to expect) and the conclusion (which says what has been achieved, including notes of any limitations

and any questions that have not been resolved).

Any information that is important to the argument should not be included in appendices or footnotes/

endnotes. The examiner is not bound to read notes or appendices, so an essay that is not complete in itself

will lose marks.

The remaining stages in writing the essay take time but are not difficult. Students need to check that they

have cited sources for all material that is not their own, and that the citations are complete and consistent

with the chosen referencing system. The bibliography should list only the sources used in the essay. The

whole essay needs to be proofread carefully (computer spelling and grammar checkers are useful but will

not do everything). Pages must be numbered and the contents page must be completed. The abstract is

normally written last.

Formal presentation of the extended essay

The extended essay should be written in a clear, correct and formal academic style, appropriate to the

subject from which the topic is drawn. The use of word processors is encouraged.
The length of the extended essay

The upper limit is 4,000 words for all extended essays. This upper limit includes the introduction, the body,

the conclusion and any quotations, but does not include:

• the abstract

• acknowledgments

• the contents page

• maps, charts, diagrams, annotated illustrations and tables

• equations, formulas and calculations

• citations/references (whether parenthetical or numbered)

• footnotes or endnotes

• the bibliography

• appendices.

Essays containing more than 4,000 words are subject to penalties and examiners are not required to read

material in excess of the word limit.



Title

The title should provide a clear indication of the focus of the essay. It should be precise and not necessarily

phrased in the form of a question.
Abstract

An abstract not exceeding 300 words must be included with the essay submitted. It does not serve as an

introduction, but presents an overview of the extended essay, and should, therefore, be written last.

The inclusion of an abstract is intended to encourage students to examine closely the development of an

argument within the extended essay and the pertinence of any conclusions that are reached. It is also

designed to allow readers to understand quickly the contents of the extended essay.

The minimum requirements for the abstract are for it to state clearly:

• the research question being investigated

• the scope of the investigation

• the conclusion(s) of the extended essay.

The abstract should be presented on a separate sheet of paper, and placed immediately after the title page.
Contents page

A contents page must be provided at the beginning of the extended essay and all pages should be

numbered. An index is not required.
Illustrations

Presentation and overall neatness are important, and it is essential that illustrative material, if included, is

well set out and used effectively. Graphs, diagrams, tables and maps are effective only if they are clearly

labelled and can be interpreted with ease. All such material that is incorporated into the extended essay

must be directly related to the text and acknowledged where appropriate. The use of photographs and other

images is acceptable only if they are captioned and/or annotated and are used to illustrate a specific point

made in the extended essay.

Bibliographies, references and citations

An extended essay must reflect academic honesty in research practices and provide the reader with the

exact sources of quotations, ideas and points of view through accurate bibliographies and referencing.

Producing accurate citations, referencing and a bibliography is a skill that students should be seeking to

perfect. Documenting the research in this way is vital: it allows readers to evaluate the evidence for

themselves and it shows the student’s understanding of the importance of the sources used.

Failure to comply with this requirement will be viewed as plagiarism and will, therefore, be treated as a

case of malpractice.


What is a bibliography?

A bibliography is an alphabetical list of every source used to research and write the essay. Sources that are

not cited in the body of the essay, but were important in informing the approach taken, should be cited in the

introduction or in an acknowledgment. The bibliography should list only those sources cited.

There are a number of different documentation styles available for use when writing research papers; most

are appropriate in some academic disciplines but not others. The supervisor should help the student decide

on a style for the particular subject of the essay. It is important to remember that, whatever style is chosen, it

must be applied consistently. When choosing the documentation style, the student needs to have a clear

understanding of how it is to be used before embarking on the research task. The documentation style

should be applied in both the final draft of the essay and in the initial research stages of taking notes. This is good practice, not only for producing a high-quality final product, but also for reducing the opportunities and

temptation to plagiarize.
Major documentation styles

The following are examples of acceptable documentation styles.

• American Political Science Association (APSA)

• American Psychological Association (APA)

• Chicago/Turabian

• Council of Biology Editors (CBE)

• Harvard citation and referencing guide

• Modern Language Association (MLA)

• Numbered references

What is a reference?

A reference is a way of indicating to the reader, in an orderly form, where information has been obtained. A

reference provides all the information needed to find the source material. References must be cited because

they acknowledge the sources used, and enable the reader to consult the work and verify the data that has

been presented.
References must be given whenever someone else’s work is quoted or summarized. References can come

from many different sources, including books, magazines, journals, newspapers, emails, internet sites and

interviews.
Internet references should include the title of the extract used as well as the website address, the date it was

accessed and, if possible, the author. With regard to electronic sources, the requirement of the IB for datestamping supersedes the requirements of the chosen referencing system. In other words, all electronic

sources must be date-stamped. Caution should be exercised with information on websites that do not give

references or that cannot be cross-checked against other sources. The more important a particular point is

to the essay, the more the quality of its source needs to be evaluated.
Any references to interviews should state the name of the interviewer, the name of the interviewee, the date

and the place of the interview.


What is a citation?

A citation is a shorthand method of making a reference in the body of an essay, which is then linked to the

full reference at the end of the essay. A citation provides the reader with accurate references so that he or

she can locate the source easily. How sources are cited varies with the particular documentation style that

has been chosen. Page numbers should normally be given when referencing printed material: in some

styles this will be in the citation, in others in the full reference. Once again, it is important to emphasize that

there must be consistency of method when citing sources.

Appendices, footnotes and endnotes

Appendices, footnotes and endnotes are not an essential section of the extended essay and examiners are

not required to read them, so care should be taken to include all information of direct relevance to the

analysis and argument in the main body of the essay. An essay that attempts to evade the word limit by

including important material in notes or appendices risks losing marks under several criteria.

Unless considered essential, complete lists of raw data should not be included in the extended essay.

Students should not constantly refer to material presented in an appendix as this may disrupt the continuity

of the essay.

The use of other media and materials

Apart from graphic material, materials in other media may be submitted only as supporting appendices and

should not detract from the written content of the extended essay.
Computers

The use of computers is encouraged where they are appropriate as tools for analysing data relevant to the

subject of the extended essay. Material such as a hard copy of computer output may be included in the

extended essay, but any associated program should be referred to or reproduced, if original, only as an

appendix.

Computer programs may only be included (in particular circumstances) in computer science and physics

essays. (See the “Computer science” and “Physics” sections for further details.)
CDs, DVDs and audio-visual materials

The model for the extended essay is a paper in an academic journal. Hence, materials such as these should

not normally be included. They are liable to be lost or damaged and the examiner will probably not have time

to look at them.


Specimen materials

Specimen materials used in, or produced by, investigations do not form part of the extended essay and must

not be submitted. Photographic evidence may be submitted in place of such material.

The viva voce (concluding interview)

The viva voce is a short interview between the student and the supervisor, and is a recommended

conclusion to the extended essay process. Students who do not attend the viva voce may be

disadvantaged.

The viva voce serves the following purposes.

• A check on plagiarism and malpractice in general

• An opportunity to reflect on successes and difficulties in the research process

• An opportunity to reflect on what has been learned

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• An aid to the supervisor’s report



The viva voce should last between 10 and 15 minutes. This is included in the recommended amount of time

the supervisor should spend with the student. The following are examples of questions that can be asked, which should be adapted to the particular essay and student.

• “I am not clear what you mean on page XXX. You quote Y: could you explain a little more about

what this tells us?”

• “On page *** you cite Z. I couldn’t find this reference (for example, website). Could you tell me

more about it?”

• “What have been the high and low points of the research and writing processes?”

• “What were the most interesting aspects of the process? Did you discover anything that surprised

you?”

• “What have you learned through writing this essay? Is there any advice you would want to pass



on to someone just starting out on an extended essay?”

• “Is there anything else that you would particularly like me to mention in my report?”

In conducting the viva voce and writing the report, supervisors should bear in mind the following.

• Examiners want to know that students understand any material (which must be properly

referenced) that they have included in their essays. This is particularly important in subjects like

mathematics. If the way the material is used in context in the essay does not clearly establish

this, the supervisor can check the student’s understanding in the viva voce and report on it.

• Minor slips in citation and referencing may lose the odd mark. If there appear to be major

shortcomings, the supervisor should investigate thoroughly. No essay should be authenticated if

the supervisor believes it contains plagiarism.

• In assessing criterion K (holistic judgment), examiners will take into account any information

given in the report about unusual intellectual inventiveness or persistence in the face of

unexpected difficulties.

• The report should not attempt to do the examiner’s job. It should refer to things, largely processrelated,

that may not be obvious in the essay itself.

• Unless there are particular problems, the viva voce should end positively. Completion of a major

piece of work such as the extended essay is something for students to feel good about.

Assessment

Using the assessment criteria

The method of assessment used by the IB is criterion-related. That is to say, the method of assessment

judges each student in relation to identified assessment criteria and not in relation to the work of other

students.

The aim is to find, for each criterion, the descriptor that conveys most adequately the

achievement level attained by the student. The process, therefore, is one of approximation. In the

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light of any one criterion, a student’s work may contain features denoted by a high achievement



level descriptor combined with features appropriate to a lower one. A professional judgment

should be made in identifying the descriptor that approximates most closely to the work.

• Having scrutinized the work to be assessed, the descriptors for each criterion should be read,

starting with level 0, until one is reached that describes an achievement level that the work being

assessed does not match as well as the previous level. The work is therefore best described by

the preceding achievement level descriptor and this level should be recorded.

• Only whole numbers should be used, not partial points such as fractions or decimals.

• The highest descriptors do not imply faultless performance and assessors and teachers should

not hesitate to use the extremes, including zero, if they are appropriate descriptions of the work

being assessed.

• Descriptors should not be considered as marks or percentages, although the descriptor levels are

ultimately added together to obtain a total. It should not be assumed that there are other

arithmetical relationships; for example, a level 4 performance is not necessarily twice as good as

a level 2 performance.

• A student who attains a particular achievement level in relation to one criterion will not

necessarily attain similar achievement levels in relation to the others. It should not be assumed

that the overall assessment of the students will produce any particular distribution of scores.

All extended essays are externally assessed by examiners appointed by the IB, and are marked on a scale

from 0 to 36. This maximum score is made up of the total criterion levels available for each essay. The total

score obtained on the scale 0 to 36 is used to determine in which of the following bands the extended essay

is placed. This band, in conjunction with the band for theory of knowledge, determines the number of

diploma points awarded for these two requirements. See the following “Award of diploma points” section for

further details.
The band descriptors are:

A Work of an excellent standard

B Work of a good standard

C Work of a satisfactory standard

D Work of a mediocre standard

E Work of an elementary standard.

Award of diploma points

The extended essay contributes to the overall diploma score through the award of points in conjunction with

theory of knowledge. A maximum of three points are awarded according to a student’s combined

performance in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge.

Both the extended essay and theory of knowledge are measured against published assessment criteria.

According to the quality of the work, and based on the application of these assessment criteria, a student’s

performance in each of the extended essay and theory of knowledge will fall into one of the five bands

described previously.


The total number of points awarded is determined by the combination of the performance levels achieved by

the student in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge according to the following matrix.



The diploma points matrix

A student who, for example, writes a good extended essay and whose performance in theory of knowledge

is judged to be satisfactory will be awarded 1 point, while a student who writes a mediocre extended essay

and whose performance in theory of knowledge is judged to be excellent will be awarded 2 points.

A student who fails to submit an extended essay will be awarded N for the extended essay, will score no

points, and will not be awarded a diploma.

Performance in both the extended essay and theory of knowledge of an elementary standard is a failing

condition for the award of the diploma.

* From 2010 onwards, 28 points overall will be required to be eligible for the diploma if a student attains an

“E” grade in either the extended essay or theory of knowledge. As previously, a grade “A” in one of the

requirements earns an extra point even if the other is a grade “E”. Attaining a grade “E” in both the extended

essay and theory of knowledge continues to represent an automatic failure.



Assessment criteria

This section provides an overview of what each criterion assesses in the extended essay. Further advice on

interpreting the assessment criteria is provided within the guidelines for each subject in the “Details—subject

specific” section. The extended essay is assessed against common assessment criteria for all extended

essays. Candidates must understand that the work submitted for assessment must address these criteria

effectively. Supervisors of extended essays should ensure that the assessment criteria are made available to

candidates and that the candidates understand these criteria.
A: research question

(Objectives 1 and 2)
This criterion assesses the extent to which the purpose of the essay is specified. In many subjects, the aim

of the essay will normally be expressed as a question and, therefore, this criterion is called the “research

question”. However, certain disciplines may permit or encourage different ways of formulating the research

task.
0 - The research question is not stated in either the introduction or on

the title page or does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in

an extended essay in the subject in which it is registered.

1 - The research question is stated in either the introduction or on the

title page but is not clearly expressed or is too broad in scope to

be treated effectively within the word limit.

2 - The research question is clearly stated in either the introduction or

on the title page and is sharply focused, making effective

treatment possible within the word limit.


B: introduction

(Objectives 1 and 5)

This criterion assesses the extent to which the introduction makes clear how the research question relates to

existing knowledge on the topic and explains how the topic chosen is significant and worthy of investigation.
0 - Little or no attempt is made to set the research question into

context. There is little or no attempt to explain the significance of

the topic.

1 - Some attempt is made to set the research question into context.

There is some attempt to explain the significance of the topic and

why it is worthy of investigation.

2 - The context of the research question is clearly demonstrated. The

introduction clearly explains the significance of the topic and why it

is worthy of investigation.

C: investigation

This criterion assesses the extent to which the investigation is planned and an appropriate range of sources

has been consulted, or data has been gathered, that is relevant to the research question. Where the

research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which the essay is

registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2.
0 - There is little or no evidence that sources have been consulted or

data gathered, and little or no evidence of planning in the

investigation.


  1. A range of inappropriate sources has been consulted, or

inappropriate data has been gathered, and there is little evidence

that the investigation has been planned.

2 - A limited range of appropriate sources has been consulted, or

data has been gathered, and some relevant material has been

selected. There is evidence of some planning in the investigation.

3 - A sufficient range of appropriate sources has been consulted, or

data has been gathered, and relevant material has been selected.

The investigation has been satisfactorily planned.

4- An imaginative range of appropriate sources has been consulted,

or data has been gathered, and relevant material has been

carefully selected. The investigation has been well planned.

D: knowledge and understanding of the topic studied

(Objectives 3 and 7)

Where the research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which the

essay is registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2. “Academic context”, as

used in this guide, can be defined as the current state of the field of study under investigation. However, this

is to be understood in relation to what can reasonably be expected of a pre-university student. For example, to obtain a level 4, it would be sufficient to relate the investigation to the principal lines of inquiry in the

relevant field; detailed, comprehensive knowledge is not required.

0 - The essay demonstrates no real knowledge or understanding of

the topic studied.

1 - The essay demonstrates some knowledge but little understanding

of the topic studied. The essay shows little awareness of an

academic context for the investigation.

2 - The essay demonstrates an adequate knowledge and some

understanding of the topic studied. The essay shows some

awareness of an academic context for the investigation.

3 - The essay demonstrates a good knowledge and understanding of

the topic studied. Where appropriate, the essay successfully

outlines an academic context for the investigation.

4 - The essay demonstrates a very good knowledge and

understanding of the topic studied. Where appropriate, the essay

clearly and precisely locates the investigation in an academic

context.

E: reasoned argument

(Objectives 1 and 4)

This criterion assesses the extent to which the essay uses the material collected to present ideas in a logical

and coherent manner, and develops a reasoned argument in relation to the research question. Where the

research question does not lend itself to a systematic investigation in the subject in which the essay is

registered, the maximum level that can be awarded for this criterion is 2.

Achievement

level

Descriptor

0 - There is no attempt to develop a reasoned argument in relation to

the research question.

1 -There is a limited or superficial attempt to present ideas in a

logical and coherent manner, and to develop a reasoned

argument in relation to the research question.

2 - There is some attempt to present ideas in a logical and coherent

manner, and to develop a reasoned argument in relation to the

research question, but this is only partially successful.

3 - Ideas are presented in a logical and coherent manner, and a

reasoned argument is developed in relation to the research

question, but with some weaknesses.

4- Ideas are presented clearly and in a logical and coherent manner.

The essay succeeds in developing a reasoned and convincing

argument in relation to the research question.
F: application of analytical and evaluative skills appropriate to the subject

(Objective 7)

0 - The essay shows no application of appropriate analytical and

evaluative skills.

1 - The essay shows little application of appropriate analytical and

evaluative skills.

2 - The essay shows some application of appropriate analytical and

evaluative skills, which may be only partially effective.

3 - The essay shows sound application of appropriate analytical and

evaluative skills.

4 - The essay shows effective and sophisticated application of

appropriate analytical and evaluative skills.
G: use of language appropriate to the subject

0 - The language used is inaccurate and unclear. There is no

effective use of terminology appropriate to the subject.

1 - The language used sometimes communicates clearly but does not

do so consistently. The use of terminology appropriate to the

subject is only partly accurate.

2 - The language used for the most part communicates clearly. The

use of terminology appropriate to the subject is usually accurate.

3 - The language used communicates clearly. The use of terminology

appropriate to the subject is accurate, although there may be

occasional lapses.

4 - The language used communicates clearly and precisely.

Terminology appropriate to the subject is used accurately, with

skill and understanding.



H: conclusion

(Objectives 1, 4 and 5)

This criterion assesses the extent to which the essay incorporates a conclusion that is relevant to the

research question and is consistent with the evidence presented in the essay.
0 -Little or no attempt is made to provide a conclusion that is relevant

to the research question.

1 -A conclusion is attempted that is relevant to the research question

but may not be entirely consistent with the evidence presented in

the essay.

2 - An effective conclusion is clearly stated; it is relevant to the

research question and consistent with the evidence presented in

the essay. It should include unresolved questions where

appropriate to the subject concerned.
I: formal presentation

(Objective 5)

This criterion assesses the extent to which the layout, organization, appearance and formal elements of the

essay consistently follow a standard format. The formal elements are: title page, table of contents, page

numbers, illustrative material, quotations, documentation (including references, citations and bibliography)

and appendices (if used).

0- The formal presentation is unacceptable, or the essay exceeds

4,000 words.

1 -The formal presentation is poor.

2 -The formal presentation is satisfactory.

3 -The formal presentation is good.

4 -The formal presentation is excellent.

J: abstract

(Objective 5)
The requirements for the abstract are for it to state clearly the research question that was investigated, how

the investigation was undertaken and the conclusion(s) of the essay.

0 -The abstract exceeds 300 words or one or more of the required

elements of an abstract (listed above) is missing.

1 -The abstract contains the elements listed above but they are not

all clearly stated.

2 -The abstract clearly states all the elements listed above.
K: holistic judgment

(Objective 1)

The purpose of this criterion is to assess the qualities that distinguish an essay from the average, such as

intellectual initiative, depth of understanding and insight. While these qualities will be clearly present in the

best work, less successful essays may also show some evidence of them and should be rewarded under



this criterion.

  1. - The essay shows no evidence of such qualities.

  1. The essay shows little evidence of such qualities.

  2. The essay shows some evidence of such qualities.

3 - The essay shows clear evidence of such qualities.

4 - The essay shows considerable evidence of such qualities


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