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|Extended Essay| 

|Marking criteria| 

|Criterion A: Criterion A: Focus and method
​(Strands: Topic, Research question, Methodology)|

Focus and method (6 marks)

Topic: is your topic communicated accurately and effectively?

Is the purpose and focus of your research clear and appropriate? Research question: is your research question clearly stated and focused (your research question must be a question, with a question mark)? Does your completed essay continuously relate to your research question, or have you been sidetracked? Many essays lose marks by not sticking to the question. Methodology: how are you going to carry out your research? How will you analyse and show your findings? Has an appropriate range of relevant source(s) and/or method(s) been selected and used in relation to your topic and research question?

|Tip:Take a listen| 

00:00 / 00:16

|Front Cover| 

|A clear title of investigation. Ensure to refer to a specific location regarding place and a geographical model.|

|Ensure to provide the word count which is a max of 2500 words. Dont go over the word count.| 

|Add an image if you want. Make sure it is an image that is relevant to the coursework.|

|Make sure not to have page number on your front page.|

|Contents Page| 

|Add Heading 1s for the main sections of the IA|

These are: 

  1. Introduction

  2. Methodology

  3. Data Analysis

  4. Conclusion 

  5. Evaluation 

  6. Bibliography

  7. Appendix

|Add maps and Images to your Bibliography.|


|Make sure to add page numbers to your document.|

|Add a clear Aim (word count 50 words)|

  1. Ensure to the reason as to why you are conducting this research

  2. What part of the curriculum does it cover.

  3.    When was the research gathered?

  4. What to aim to achieve through this research?

|A clear title for each sections to help structure your report.|

|Add a well labelled map of the area where the research is going to be conducted.

Tip: Add more than one map to create a detailed context of place.|

|Example of Mapping Techniques| 

|Introduction Page 2| 

|Location: Help create context as to where the data is going to be collected.|

|Have a Geographical model that is relevant to the coursework and that has been explained and researched. |

|Ensure to have a depiction of the model chosen and spent some time to contextualise the image. |

|Examples of geographic models| 

|Introduction Page 3| 

|A clear subtitle is given.|

|With only 2500 words at your disposal you need to ensure that you can prove or disprove your hypothesis at the end of your IA. So less is sometimes more. Choose three Hypotheses that you will be able to prove or disprove and explain your findings.|

|Criterion B: Criterion B: Knowledge and understanding
(Strands: Context, Subject-specific terminology and concepts)| 

Context: is your selection of source materials relevant and appropriate to the research question? Subject-specific terminology and concepts: is your knowledge of the topic clear and coherent and are your sources used effectively and with understanding?

|Constructing Hypothesis| 

1. Ensure to make sure your Hypothesis is a statement.

2. Keep the Hypothesis simple and easy to understand. 


|The Bradshaw Model|

|The Schumm's Model|

|Hjulström curve|


|Give a clear title of investigation, this helps guide the reader and help the examiner allocate the marks to the right criteria.|

|Conduct a pilot study prior to collecting your data to help improve the overall results. It helps reduce human error and bias, increases accuracy and increases the reliability of your results.|

|Method: How are you going to use the named equipment above to gathered the required data. Ensure to keep this short and detailed.|

|Equipment: What equipment will you use to gather this set of data, list them.|


|Justification (sampling) | 

Random sampling

Random sampling = is a part of the sampling technique in which each sample has an equal probability of being chosen. A sample chosen randomly is meant to be an unbiased representation of the total population.

Stratified sampling

Stratified sampling = is a type of sampling method in which the total population is divided into smaller groups or strata to complete the sampling process. 

Systematic sampling

Systematic sample = requires you to gather data at regular intervals.

For example, every 1 metres along a line running from one river bank to the other data is collected for depth.

Pragmatic sampling

Pragmatic = essentially safety, accessibility and the use of prior knowledge. For example, if a student is carrying out a river investigation they might use pragmatic sampling methods meaning only areas that are easily accessible and did not pose a risk would be studied. It is reliable and practical. 

|Justification | 


Accuracy means how close a measurement is to the true value.

The closer a measured value is to the true value, the more accurate it is. The further a measured value is from the true value, the greater the error.


Reliable means consistently good in quality or performance; able to be trusted.

How are you going to repeatedly gather data ensuring top results?


Representation refers to the description or portrayal of someone or something in a particular way, in this case the river. At each site how are you going to choose a site that represents that particular course or part of the river?


Bias is a tendency to lean in a certain direction, either in favor of or against a particular result. To be truly biased means to lack a neutral viewpoint on a particular topic. So what are you going to do so that your results arent falsified and are as true as possible?

|Criterion C: Criterion C: Critical thinking
(Strands: Research, Analysis and Discussion and evaluation)| 

Students should treat and display the information collected using the most appropriate techniques. These techniques must be the most effective way of representing the type of information collected and must be well used. The precise techniques employed will differ depending on the nature of the fieldwork question but may include statistical tests (including confidence limits), graphs, diagrams, maps, annotated photographs and images, matrices and field sketches.

Students must also refer to the geographic context, information collected and the ways in which the material has been treated and presented.

This criterion assesses the quality of information and data collected and its suitability for analysis in criterion D, whether it is appropriate and a sufficient range of techniques have been used for the presentation of information, and whether the presentation follows accepted conventions (that is, the numbering, labelling, and annotating of tables, graphs and diagrams).

|Data Analysis| 

|A clear title of investigation to ensure the examiners knows what hypothesis this belongs too. |

|Each graph/ map or illustration needs to have a title. |

|For each graph an in-depth analysis must be done.

  1. Make sure to have less graphs that are well constructed an show composite variables rather than simple graphs that show single variables.

  2. Also design your own methods of displaying data.

  3. Also incorporate diagrams and images to highlight anomalies. 


|If you want to construct a cross-sectional area diagram using your data digitally click on the logo. |


|Criterion D: Criterion D: Presentation
(Strands: Structure, Layout)| 

Structure: the way in which your essay is constructed. Is your essay laid out in the conventional way expected of such essays? Layout: is your essay is set out according to the IB’s EE requirements? (Are your pages numbered? Have you used a 12-point, readable font that is double spaced? etc.)

|Written Analysis| 

|Criterion E: Conclusion| 

Students should summarize the findings of the fieldwork investigation. There should be a clear, concise statement answering the fieldwork question. It is acceptable for the conclusion to state that the findings do not match the student’s preliminary judgment or prediction.

This criterion assesses the ability of the student to summarize the findings of the fieldwork investigation and draw a supported conclusion.

A clear title of investigation

A clear title of investigation


A clear title of investigation

A clear title of investigation

|Criterion F: Evaluation| 

Students should review their investigative methodology, including methods of collecting primary information. Within this, they should consider any factors that may have affected the validity of the data, including personal bias and unpredicted external circumstances such as the weather.

Students should suggest specific and plausible ways in which the study might have been improved and could be extended in the future.

This criterion assesses the student’s ability to review the investigative methodology, by weighing up the strengths and/or weaknesses of the chosen method, and suggest improvements


A clear title of investigation

A clear title of investigation

A clear title of investigation

A clear title of investigation

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