Uncertainties in Lab Work

It may be holiday time in the Northern hemisphere but that doesn’t say things go quiet in the world of blogging. If you are a student who is about to start on your IB Chemistry course, or, if you are a student who has yet to do their IA this post is for you! When recording measurements or data in lab work it is vital that you record things correctly, especially in your IA (that’s internal assessment to all you new ...

Mandatory Lab Ideas, 1.2, Empirical Formula

As you well know, the IB now tells us that we must carry out up to twelve mandatory labs or skills (I say up to as there is some debate whether 9.1, the application of the Winkler method is mandatory or not and the ‘single replacement labs’ occur twice, in 15.1 and 19.1). So I thought I would focus the next few blog posts on some of these mandatory labs, starting with the first on one the list, namely, topic 1.2, ...

The new IA – views from DP subject experts

The Group 4 IA is changing. For those teaching students in their first year of the DP, these changes will be taking effect now. As a teacher or a Head of School, do you know which methods and practices your school will be adopting? Some of OSC’s subject experts have written specific blogs on the changes and offer advice on how to approach them. Biology Chemistry. Article 1 | Article 2 Physics Design Technology

Internal Assessment

This is not a regular post, perhaps its an anomalous one (?) But please do no exclude it. I am presently moderating Internal Assessments and I feel compelled to write on behalf of all the moderators out there, who open up a bag of scripts to find not a single word has been written on the submitted labs. Please Please Please ANNOTATE your scripts. I know that the syllabus is changing and that the Internal Assessment has had a revamp etc. However, you will still ...

Scaffolding the new IA / developing your new practical programme

A very Happy New Year to do. I do hope you managed to get some rest and relaxation and were able to unwind somewhat. I expect you are now back in school, although some southern hemisphere teachers may have some more holiday time left still. Now the new course has been running for a few months, I thought it was worth giving you some thoughts / ideas as to how you could run your practical programme under the new course. That ...

The New TSM (Teacher Support Material) – A guided tour

Have you seen the new TSM (teacher support material)? It was first uploaded to the OCC (online curriculum centre) back in August and with the release of the new course, it makes vital (and interesting!) reading. Whilst the old TSM material consisted of a number of PDF files of labs, this new revamped version is more like an e-book and it is my intention to run over some of the highlights: The TSM now aims to support teachers in structuring and delivering ...

Internal Assessment Parts B (Summary of Evidence) and D (Analysis)

Although they are divided into two separate sections (and separated by part C) the Summary of Evidence (B) and Analysis (D) are inextricably linked – or should be.  Although the sections are assessed as discrete entities, they both must relate to the research question and the analysis should be only of the evidence presented in B. This can sometimes be frustrating ; you have spent a large part of your career as a history student trying to integrate these two elements ...

Plan of investigation – part II: scope and method of the investigation

This is one of the most difficult parts of the Internal Assessment to unpack because they are integrated.  In other subjects, the scope and method are very separate; in history less so.  One colleague likes to tell her students that the scope is the what and the method is the how.  I agree to a certain extent, but feel that can cause some confusion. The scope of an investigation would be the parameters.  If you choose to write your IA on ...

CE – Get it Right!

I have already made some blog postings regarding the first two assessed IA criteria, namely ‘Desgin’ labs and ‘DCP’ labs. This posting will focus on the third assessed criteria, ‘Conclusion and Evaluation’ or ‘CE’ or ‘CEv’. As with the other two assessed criteria, CEv is split into three aspects, aspects 1, 2 and 3. We will focus on each aspect individually. Aspect 1 – it is the opinion of the author that this aspect is the hardest aspect of all to achieve ...

Introducing the Internal Assessment in History

In the southern hemisphere the students are completing their IB exams; those of us in the Northern Hemisphere are beginning the preparations for the IB, often including a draft of the Internal Assessment. Students complete some form of internally assessed work in all of their subjects.  Students in Math Studies have their project; Economics students have a portfolio; Biology students have their labs (for now); and History students have the historical investigation. The Historical Investigation can be the high point of a ...