The 5 Nots (Comparative Study HL)

In September I posted some thoughts about the Comparative Study – Six of the Best (comparative study issues and advice) This month I’m continuing that theme but focusing on criterion F, so I’m only talking really to those of you who are taking HIGHER LEVEL Visual Arts. Criterion F deals with making connections to your own art-making practice. *In July I posted a blog about what NOT to do in your exhibition - “When NOT to…” (Visual Arts Exhibition No Nos) Now I am posting ...

Start as you mean to go on

By Wednesday, October 4, 2017 No tags 0

The IB year is starting for most students. It is an exciting time because the courses you are doing are new and hopefully interesting. Also there is no left baggage from previous courses – it is a fresh start. A word of warning however – the IB is an educational system that has very little flexibility. The choices on offer from most schools is limited, and of course have to fit into a blocking system that allows the timetable to work. ...

Core concepts/principles

This post is primarily aimed at the IB1 crowd. Right about now you should be well along your Frustration Curve - it looks something like this over the first year:   Should be fairly self-explanatory but maybe a few words about where you are heading. Your first tests should be reasonably straightforward - let's face it, we are not rocket surgeons - and you should be able to deal with supply, demand, markets and elasticities with reasonable confidence. The initial shell-shock, and ...

Understanding Averages

You will have learnt that there are three types of average: the mean, the median, and the mode. Let's look at them closely - why we need all three, what you can do with them, and when to use each one. The Mean The mean is calculated by adding all the values and dividing by the number of values. Using sigma notation, where the sigma sign means "the sum of", we can write: $m = {{\sum x } \over n}$. The best way ...

Teaching optical isomers

I've just started to teach this topic to my students. It doesn't take too long but I do find it an enjoyable topic to teach. But how do you teach it? I always warn the students that the topic is jargon heavy - the words / phrases used in the topic such as  chiral, racemic, racemate, optically active are all pretty specific to optical isomers and are not used outside of the topic. In my teaching I have found that students understand the ...

On the sources of political authority

Authority without expressed consent is nothing short of autocratic power or as the Ancients called it, tyranny. On the other hand, to preside over a politically educated, active citizenry is true democracy. If authority is the ultimate justification for exercising power, sovereignty remains the very foundation of its legitimacy. It is in the name of popular sovereignty that revolutions erupted in America, France and Russia. The very moment the legitimacy of a political leader is undermined, authority soon erodes to ...

Preparing students in Grade 11 for Internal Assessment

By Friday, September 29, 2017 , , , , 0

The Internal Assessment represents an examination of the students understanding of the experimental programme. To this end, Grade 11 is of great importance in preparing students for the independent investigation (or II) that is most commonly carried out in Grade 12.   The experimental programme is pivotal in the teaching of Biology, illustrating, teaching and reinforcing the theoretical concepts of IB Biology. It comprises three parts: Practical activities including Applications / Skills / Mandatory labs (These can be found within 'My IB' (the platform which ...

University Entrance Exams and Tests – Deadlines and Test Centre availability

There is a plethora of entrance exams or tests for different universities around the world and they all have deadlines for registering.  From the SATs and ACTs, to the IELTS and TOEFLs, to the TSAs and all the other subject-specific and country-specific exams, you will need to check all dates for registering.  And not only the dates but also the Test Centre availability.  Seats fill up quickly at Test Centres so make sure that you get in there early. With the ...

IB Career-Related Programme – university admission news update

The latest news on the block (see news from TIE Online, 30 May 2017) is that the University of Southampton now accepts applications from students taking the IBCP.  Please read the UoS Admissions Policy Statement carefully to fully understand the requirements.  Have a look at an example course here (Economics and Philosophy). Add this high-quality, research-focused, Russell Group University to the growing list of other UK universities accepting the IBCP and you will soon realise that there are a wide-range of ...

Descartes on the dangers of false opinion

On the onset of his quest for pure and truthful knowledge, René Descartes decides to ‘overthrow’ all his former opinions since the latter may be built on sandy foundations. However, for fear of finding himself in a mental no man’s land, the philosopher sets for himself the rules of a ‘provisional morality’, the first being ‘to obey the laws and customs of my country’, a precept immediately followed by the injunction: ‘holding constantly to the religion in which, by God’s ...